Middle-aged smokers are more likely to suffer from memory loss than middle-aged people who do not smoke, according to a new study.

Researchers at the Institut National de la Sante et de la Recherche Medicale in Villejuif, France, examined data on 10,308 people between the ages of 35 and 55. They found that smokers ranked in the lowest 20 percent of cognitive tests gauging their memory, reasoning, vocabulary and verbal fluency.

The researchers also found, however, that people who were ex-smokers had considerably higher cognitive test results than current smokers, showing that smoking cessation had a positive effect on reversing the ill effects.

The study also found that people who stopped smoking had better overall health than current smokers. Visit smokefree.gov for tips on how to kick the habit.