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Stoke City (A) Wed 4 Mar 2015, 19:45, Barclays Premier League

by Helen Mayo @Everton

Kevin Mirallas has called on Evertonians to kick cigarettes into touch and take part in Stoptober - the first ever mass quit attempt running throughout October.

The Belgian international has joined a host of stars, including TV chef Gordon Ramsay, Olympic swimmer Sharron Davies and Newcastle United captain Steven Taylor, to become an anti-smoking advocate for the nation's eight million smokers.

Stoptober is the Department of Health's newest campaign to encourage quitters to stay smoke free over the course of the month, whilst offering support, tips and advice. Employers, councils and local stop smoking services will also be supporting the new campaign.

Research has shown that if smokers quit for 28 days, they are five times more likely to stay smoke free so Stoptober will guide them through a detailed step-by-step programme to help them achieve this goal.

As well as inspiration and expert advice from Ian Wright and other mentors, all of those who commit to stub out smoking for good will receive daily support and encouragement via the official Stoptober app (available via Smartphone), the Stoptober Facebook page and the official support pack.

Smoking is the biggest cause of premature death in England and each year it accounts for over 100,000 deaths in the UK and one in two long-term smokers will die prematurely from a smoking disease.

Last month, Steven Naismith called on parents to stub it out after visiting a local primary school to highlight the dangers of passive smoking.

Naismith took part in a sports session with youngsters, delivered by Everton in the Community, to help them understand how smoking can have an adverse affect on physical ability and their health.  

For more information and to join the UK's largest stop smoking challenge, visit

Ian Wright - Stoptober

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