Carbon Dioxide Effects on Exercise

The type of carbon that emanates from cigarettes is similar to that which is released by exhausts of motor vehicles and its absorption within the bloodstream takes place rapidly. When oxygen is taken up by blood from the lungs, it is transported by attaching it to hemoglobin which is normally founded within red cells of the blood. It has been noted that oxygen comprises of a high attraction level for hemoglobin but not as much as that of carbon dioxide. Carbon dioxide is found to have about three hundred attraction level for hemoglobin as compared to that of oxygen.

This higher level of hemoglobin attraction results to a greater binding of carbon dioxide on hemoglobin. Carbon dioxide continues to takes oxygen’s space within the blood whereby oxygen’s level tends to decrease as that of carbon dioxide increases. Increase in carbon dioxide levels within the blood also tends to tamper with a situation where oxygen is released from one’s blood and absorbed by the cells. This greatly affects the heart operations as well as muscle cells which experience a great oxygen demand.

Exercise greatly involves energy systems operational in ones body in much activity which makes it necessary to have high oxygen levels during exercising. Therefore a form of interference such as smoking hinders appropriate energy production which makes exercise difficult to undertake. (Bernardi, 1999) Airways Resistance Airways resistance forms another effect of smoking that causes difficulties during exercise. When the smoke that comes from cigarette is inhaled by an individual it interferes with the structure of airways whereby they tend to become narrower than usual.

This reduction in the size of air passages is what causes airways resistance since only a lesser amount of air can pass through the airways. A situation where smoke is inhaled from cigarettes within a few seconds results to about three times acceleration of airways resistance as compared to the rate at which air circulates from and to the lungs. This implies that oxygen coming from lungs is released in minimal amounts as the airways continue undergoing reduction. Smoking also contributes to airways resistance through swelling that takes place on airways mucous membrane.

When mucous membranes swell, they tend to interfere with smooth blood circulation hence providing minimal amounts of oxygen to be used during exercise. Exercises cause smokers to encounter deficiencies in the amount of oxygen in their blood and they find it hard to continue exercising. That is, exercise elevates oxygen’s demand and it causes airways resistance to get noticed more than when the smoker’s body is at rest. Since smoking reduce lung capacity, minimal amounts of oxygen gets to the alveoli which causes improper exchange of gases.

This impaired exchange becomes evident when reduced amount of oxygen is found present within the blood system resulting to low performance during exercise. (Bernardi, 1999) Airways resistance is also caused by tar that is normally found in the smoke produced by cigarettes. The tar forms a coating on the lungs’ wall which decreases the elasticity possessed by air sacs. Air sacs normally expand when air in form of oxygen is taken in increasing the capacity held at any one time. When their air sacs walls are coated by tar from cigarette smoke, the expanding becomes impossible and they are only able to hold very little amount of oxygen.

Since the oxygen stored in air sacs is later absorbed in someone’s bloodstream, minimal oxygen amounts are made available during exercise having in mind that exercising requires very high amounts oxygen. Another effect caused by tar is a situation where the mechanism through which lungs are cleansed is tampered with. The breakdown of this particular mechanism allows pollutants into lungs as well as bronchial tubes whose effects are presented through coughing. Coughing reduces performance during exercise since it interferes with normal breathing process which is of great importance when exercising. (Bernardi, 1999)

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