Researchers Say New Pill Helps People Quit Smoking and Slim Down

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A fat smoker's dream come true! A new pill is in the works that apparently doubles your chances of quitting smoking while helping you lose considerable amounts of weight.

The drug, which is in the final stages of testing, tames the urge for food and cigarettes by blocking the same circuits in the brain that give pot smokers the "munchies." It could be available in a year or two.

Doctors say the drug will probably be marketed both for dieting and smoking cessation, but will likely have its greatest appeal to people trying to do both. Researchers say this could offer a well-timed one-two punch against the nation's most serious health concerns. Smoking is the country's top killer, accounting for 435,000 deaths in 2000.

Right behind it at 400,000 deaths is the combination of poor diet, obesity and physical inactivity. Results of studies on the drug were released today at a meeting of the American College of Cardiology.