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Mariano, a Hispanic living in Illinois, started smoking at 15.
At age 47, Mariano woke up one morning feeling sick and dizzy. He was sweating a lot. He went to the doctor, who told him his blood pressure was extremely high. He was hospitalized that day.
Three days later, he had open heart surgery to replace blocked blood vessels in his heart.
“I smoked my last cigarette the day I was told I needed heart surgery,” he said. He hasn’t smoked since. “I was given a second chance to live.”
Mariano, who loves to cook and noticed that he has more energy since he quit smoking, is part of a new effort from the CDC and the National Latino Tobacco Control Network (NLTCN) to raise awareness among Latinos about the dangers of tobacco use and second-hand smoke.
The campaign, Tips from Smokers, features real-life stories from ex-smokers like Mariano.
Read more about Mariano here or watch his video in Spanish.
Explore More:Healthcare Access, Healthy Families & Schools, Quit Smoking
By The Numbers
of Latinos remain without health insurance coverage