According to a new study, smoking cigarettes more than erases the gap in terms of average life spans for people who are rich and poor.
Research in the past has revealed to us that those who live in developed countries and are considered to be rich usually live longer than those in developing countries who are considered to be poor.
What has been found now though is that this gap in terms of life span can be erased simply by lighting up a cigarette.
Researchers looked at residents aged 45 to 64 for the study, all from a few towns in Scotland.
The residents were followed and split into four groups based on social class, income level, etc.
What they found was that after a period of 28 years, with the study beginning in the 1970s, the survival rate for non-smokers was 65% for women, and 53% for men in the rich category.
When they were compared to rich men and women who smoked though, the survival rates dropped to only 40% for women, and 25% for the men.
The life span gap for rich and poor smokers was very similar. Rich men who smoked had a survival rate of 25% compared to 28% for poor men who smoked.
For women, it was 40% compared to just 35%.
What thsi shows is that smoking can truly erase the benefits of being rich in terms of health.
The study has been published in the British Medical Journal.