PLAYA DEL REY, Calif., Jan. 6 (UPI) -- Patrick Reynolds, who says the family tobacco business has killed millions, including his own father, says it's never too late to stop smoking.
Reynolds, the grandson of R.J. Reynolds, the founder of the R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., was a smoker for 10 years until he quit in 1985 after five years of trying.
"If you've tried to quit before and failed, take comfort in the fact that this is normal. Most smokers do fail several times before stopping successfully. View your past failures as part of the normal journey to becoming a non-smoker," Reynolds said in a statement. "Also, get into a good program. Ninety-five percent of those who quit go back to smoking within 12 months. A good program will increase your chance of quitting by 300 percent or more."
Reynolds recommends trying the over-the-counter nicotine patch or gum, or discuss a prescription drug like Chantix or Zyban with a doctor.
Reynolds advises those quitting smoking to:
-- Drink more water.
-- Avoid sugar, caffeine and alcohol for the first week of quitting.
-- Try a cigarette substitute. The e-cigarette has unknown health consequences, but cinnamon sticks or chewing gum are safe.
-- Start thinking of yourself as a non-smoker; write 10 good things about being a non-smoker and 10 bad things about being a smoker.