“It's a nasty habit — bad for your health, expensive, not to mention the odor.”

English Lesson: It's a nasty habit — bad for your health, expensive, not to mention the odor.

You quit smoking a few months ago, and you're really happy not to be a smoker any more. You're talking to a friend who's not a smoker. You say this about how bad smoking is.

It's a nasty habit — bad for your health, expensive, not to mention the odor.

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a nasty habit

Usually people call habits "good" or "bad". But sometimes bad habits can be called "nasty". The word "nasty" sounds worse than "bad". Here are some "nasty habits":

biting your fingernails

leaving dirty dishes in the sink

chewing tobacco

(something) is bad for your health

If something makes you unhealthy, it's "bad for your health". Use this especially when you're talking about habits and things that you do often:

Chronic stress is bad for your health.

A recent study shows that sitting for long periods of time could be bad for your health.

not to mention (something)

Use "not to mention ___" when you're listing reasons or excuses. It marks things that are kind of "extra" items on the list.

For example, in this sentence:

Smoking is a nasty habit – bad for your health, expensive, not to mention the odor.

...the speaker gave two good reasons why smoking is a bad habit: it's bad for your health and expensive. The bad odor that cigarette smoke leaves is another reason, but it's not as strong of a reason as the first two. So the speaker adds that to the list with "not to mention".

The costs, not to mention the risks, of transporting the telescope to and from space would have been excessive.

You can follow "not to mention" with a noun like in the examples above. You can also follow it with a sentence or clause:

It's so much easier to order something than to spend all that time going to the grocery store, cooking, washing dishes. Not to mention I'm not that good of a cook to begin with.

an odor

An "odor" is a smell. The word "odor" is not as common as "smell", and it's most often used in these phrases:

body odor

a strong odor

a pungent odor

a faint odor

a foul odor

an unpleasant odor

a strange odor

"Odors" are usually bad, although it is possible to describe an odor as "sweet" or "pleasant". For good smells, use "scent" or "fragrance".