Cdc — fact sheet — fast facts — smoking & tobacco use

Diseases and DeathTobacco use leads to disease and disability.

  • Smoking causes cancer, heart disease, stroke, lung diseases (including emphysema, bronchitis, and chronic airway obstruction), and diabetes.1
  • For every person who dies from a smoking related disease, about 30 more people suffer with at least one serious illness from smoking.1
  • More than 16 million Americans suffer from a disease caused by smoking.1

Tobacco use is the leading preventable cause of death.

  • Worldwide, tobacco use causes more than 5 million deaths per year, and current trends show that tobacco use will cause more than 8 million deaths annually by 2030.2
  • Cigarette smoking is responsible for more than 480,000 deaths per year in the United States, including an estimated 42,000 deaths resulting from secondhand smoke exposure.1 This is about one in five deaths annually, or 1,300 deaths every day.1
  • On average, smokers die 10 years earlier than nonsmokers.3
  • If smoking persists at the current rate among youth in this country, 5.6 million of today s Americans younger than 18 years of age are projected to die prematurely from a smoking related illness. This represents about one in every 13 Americans aged 17 years or younger who are alive today.1

Costs and ExpendituresThe tobacco industry spends billions of dollars each year on cigarette advertising and promotions.4

  • $8.4 billion total spent in 2011
  • Almost $23 million spent every day in 2011

Tobacco use costs the United States billions of dollars each year, including 1

  • More than $289 billion a year, including at least $133 billion in direct medical care for adults and more than $156 billion in lost productivity
  • $5.6 billion a year (2006 data) in lost productivity from exposure to secondhand smoke

State spending on tobacco prevention and control does not meet CDC recommended levels.1,5,6

  • Collectively, states have billions of dollars available to them from tobacco excise taxes and tobacco industry legal settlements for preventing and controlling tobacco use. States currently use a very small percentage of these funds for tobacco control programs.
  • In fiscal year 2014, states will collect $25.7 billion from tobacco taxes and legal settlements, but states will spend only 1.9% of the $25.7 billion on prevention and cessation programs.
  • No states currently fund tobacco control programs at CDC’s «recommended» level. Only two states (Alaska and North Dakota) fund tobacco control programs at the «minimum» level.
  • Investing less than 15% (i.e., $3.3 billion) of the $25.7 billion would fund every state tobacco control program at CDC recommended levels.

Cigarette Smoking in the United StatesPercentage of U.S. adults aged 18 years or older who were current cigarette smokers in 2012 7

  • 18.1% of all adults (42.1 million people) 20.1% of males, 14.5% of females
  • 21.8% of non Hispanic American Indians/Alaska Natives
  • 19.7% of non Hispanic Whites
  • 18.1% of non Hispanic Blacks
  • 12.5% of Hispanics
  • 10.7% of non Hispanic Asians (excluding Native Hawaiians/Pacific Islanders)
  • 26.1% of multiple race individuals

Notes

  • Current smokers are defined as persons who reported smoking at least 100 cigarettes during their lifetime and who, at the time of interview, reported smoking every day or some days.

Thousands of young people start smoking cigarettes every day1

  • Each day, more than 3,200 persons younger than 18 years of age smoke their first cigarette.
  • Each day, an estimated 2,100 youth and young adults who have been occasional smokers become daily cigarette smokers.

Many adult cigarette smokers want to quit smoking.

  • In 2011 1
    • 68.9% of adult smokers wanted to stop smoking
    • 42.7% had made a quit attempt in the past year

Notes

  • See CDC’s Smoking Cessation fact sheet for more information.
  • «Made a quit attempt» refers to smokers who reported that they stopped smoking for more than 1 day in the past 12 months because they were trying to quit smoking.

References

  1. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The Health Consequences of Smoking 50 Years of Progress A Report of the Surgeon General. Atlanta U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Office on Smoking and Health, 2014 accessed 2014 Apr 14 .
  2. World Health Organization. WHO Report on the Global Tobacco Epidemic, 2011. Geneva World Health Organization, 2011 accessed 2014 Apr 14 .
  3. Jha P, Ramasundarahettige C, Landsman V, Rostron B, Thun M, Anderson RN, McAfee T, Peto R. 21st Century Hazards of Smoking and Benefits of Cessation in the United States. New England Journal of Medicine 2013 368 341 50 accessed 2014 Apr 14 .
  4. Federal Trade Commission. Federal Trade Commission Cigarette Report for 2011. PDF 325 KB Washington Federal Trade Commission, 2013 accessed 2014 Apr 14 .
  5. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Best Practices for Comprehensive Tobacco Control Programs 2014. Atlanta U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Office on Smoking and Health, 2014 accessed 2014 Apr 14 .
  6. Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids. Broken Promises to Our Children The 1998 State Tobacco Settlement 15 Years Later. Washington Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids, 2013 accessed 2014 Apr 14 .
  7. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Current Cigarette Smoking Among Adults United States, 2005 2012. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report 2014 63(02) 29 34 accessed 2014 Apr 11 .

For Further Information

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion
Office on Smoking and Health
E mail tobaccoinfo
Phone 1 800 CDC INFO

Media Inquiries Contact CDC’s Office on Smoking and Health press line at 770 488 5493.

Lights (cigarette type) — wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Cigarette filter edit

The 1950s gave birth to numerous scientific studies that proved the link between cigarettes and cancer (see Wynder and Graham, 1950 Doll and Hill, 1952, 1954 Hammond and Horn, 1958). 6 In response to these studies and their perceived threat to the tobacco industry s future profitability, tobacco companies experimented with new modifications to the cigarette design. 6 By altering the cigarette design, tobacco companies hoped to create a «safer» cigarette that would better appeal to their increasingly health conscious consumers. 7 The addition of filters to cigarettes was one of the industry s first design modifications, and filters would become essential to the later development of light and low tar products. 8 Claiming that filtered cigarettes literally filtered out much of the harmful tar and carcinogenic particles found in regular cigarettes, tobacco companies promoted relative product safety in order to convince smokers to continue smoking. 7 Because filtered cigarettes were depicted as relatively safer and less harmful, smokers who were concerned about tobacco s negative health impacts were led to believe that by switching to filtered cigarettes, they would minimize smoking’s detrimental impact on their health as a result, millions of addicted smokers switched to filtered cigarettes instead of quitting altogether. 7 By 1960, filtered cigarettes had become the leading tobacco product. 8

Creation of the «light» cigarette edit

In addition to heavily promoting the filtered cigarette as the answer to smokers health concerns, the industry also poured resources into developing a cigarette that would produce lower machine measured tar and nicotine yields when tested by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). 6 This endeavor resulted in the introduction and heavy promotion of light cigarettes during the 1970s. 8 The newly designed light cigarette employed a special filter perforated with small holes these perforated filters allegedly offset the concentration of inhaled harmful smoke with clean air. Most important to the tobacco industry, however, was that light cigarettes produced lower tar and nicotine levels when tested with the FTC s smoking machines. 6

Market share edit

By 1997, the advertising of light cigarettes constituted fifty percent of the industry s advertising spending. 8 Through heavy marketing, the tobacco industry succeeded in misleading its consumer base to believe that light products were safer than regular brands, and thus, that these products were the rational choice for smokers who cared about their health. 7 9 As a result of these implicit and widespread health claims, the popularity of light and low tar cigarettes grew considerably. In fact, the market share of light cigarettes grew from a mere 2.0 percent in 1967 to 83.5 percent of the tobacco market in 2005. 8 Due to recent federal regulations requiring that the tobacco industry s internal documents be made publicly available online, there is no doubt about the industry s underlying motives behind the development of light products. 10 These documents explicitly state that the industry sought to both maintain and expand its consumer base by manipulating smokers health concerns to the industry s advantage. 10

Health claims edit ISO machine smoking method edit

Packages of light, mild, and low tar cigarettes are often labeled as being lower tar and nicotine and also list tar and nicotine levels that are lower than those found on the packages of regular cigarettes. The lower tar and nicotine numbers found on cigarette packages represent the levels produced when machine smoked by a smoking machine test method. 3 Developed by the FTC in 1967, the smoking machine test method was created to determine the yield of a cigarette by smoking it in a standardized fashion by machine this test method is also known as the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) machine smoking method. 11 While the FTC has always recognized that the smoking machine did not replicate human smoking and that no two human smokers smoke in the same way, the FTC did not initially recognize the tobacco industry s ability to design cigarettes that yielded low levels of tar and nicotine when machine smoked, but yielded much higher levels when smoked by a human being. 12

Cigarette modifications and «compensatory» smoking edit

Light cigarettes essentially fool smoking machines through several techniques. A light cigarette s filter perforated by tiny holes, for instance, is uncovered when smoked by machine, and consequently, the cigarette smoke is heavily diluted with air and causes the machines to report falsely low levels of nicotine and tar. 3 When smoked by human smokers, in contrast, this filter is usually covered by smokers lips and fingers. 3 Consequently, the tiny filter holes are covered, and the light cigarette actually becomes equivalent to a regular cigarette. 3 Some tobacco manufacturers also increased the length of the paper wrap which covers the cigarette filter this modification serves to decrease the number of puffs available to the machine test and limits the amount of tobacco that is machine smoked. 3 In reality, however, the tobacco found under this paper wrap which is not smoked by machine is still available to and smoked by the human smoker. 3

The human act of «compensating» is perhaps the most important method by which light cigarettes cheat the ISO machine smoking method. Unlike machines, human smokers are often heavily addicted to the nicotine in cigarettes, and consequently, smokers alter their smoking behaviors in order to consume the amount of nicotine required to satisfy their cravings. Compensatory behavior especially occurs if a smoker switches from regular cigarettes to light cigarettes. 3 12 4 13 Numerous scientific studies reveal that the smoker actually compensates for the lower amount of nicotine by actively changing his or her smoking habits and even increasing the number of cigarettes that are smoked per day. 3 12 4 13 Smokers adjust their smoking techniques by smoking their cigarettes more intensively. 4 More intensive smoking is achieved by taking larger, more rapid, and more frequent puffs, by inhaling more deeply, by smoking more cigarettes per day, and/or by reflexively blocking the cigarette s filter. 3 4 14 Due to these compensatory smoking behaviors, smokers inhale significantly more nicotine and tar levels than what are measured by the ISO machine smoking method. 10 3 4 13

Scientific conclusions edit

With these factors in mind, it is unsurprising that switching from regular to light or low tar cigarettes does not reduce the health risks of smoking or lower the smoker s exposure to the nicotine, tar, and carcinogens present in cigarette smoke. 3 4 15 According to the 2004 Surgeon General s report, Smoking cigarettes with lower machine measured yields of tar and nicotine provides no clear benefit to health. 16 The tobacco industry s own internal documents, too, reveal that cigarette manufacturers are more than aware of the difference between machine measured levels of nicotine and tar, and those actually inhaled by smokers. 3 The industry is equally aware of the compensatory behaviors that smokers engage in when smoking light cigarettes. 3 Nonetheless, these health truths are not widely publicized or understood by the average smoking population, and even today, the tobacco industry’s implicit health claims lead countless smokers to switch from regular cigarettes to light cigarettes, rather than quitting altogether.

Low nicotine Cigarettes May Help Smokers Quit edit

A recent study led by nicotine researcher Neal Benowitz found that low nicotine cigarettes may help some smokers quit. These results differ greatly from those obtained in studies conducted years earlier by Benowitz and others on previous generations of low nicotine cigarettes. According to a USCF article on the study, smokers who switched to cigarettes with tobacco that contains less nicotine did not compensate by smoking more cigarettes and inhaling more tar and toxins.

According to a more recent Washington Post a
rticle, the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) has backed low nicotine cigarette research as it weighs its new regulatory power. That new power includes the power to regulate the level of nicotine in cigarettes and was given to the FDA by the 2009 Tobacco Control Act, described below.

2009 anti smoking legislation edit

In June 2009, the Senate passed anti smoking legislation described by USA Today as the most sweeping tobacco control measure ever passed by Congress, and this legislation directly impacts the marketing and consumption of light tobacco products. 2 In addition to giving the FDA regulatory power over all tobacco products, the bill severely restricts the tobacco industry s previous marketing strategies, many of which relied on making implicit health claims about their products. 2 17 According to the bill, cigarette manufacturers are also forbidden from using product descriptors such as light, low tar, and mild. 17

Critics of the legislation question whether it will have a significant impact on today s pervasive tobacco market. 7 For one, the bill does not specify acceptable words for differentiating light cigarettes from other cigarettes. 2 Cigarette manufacturers quickly responded to this loophole by strategically color coding their products so that Camel Lights, for example, is now Camel Blue. Nik Modi, a tobacco industry analyst, concedes that prohibiting terms like «light» and «low tar» will hardly affect the tobacco market because smokers have already become acclimated to color coding. 18

Notes edit