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Surprising Science

Biggest Survey on Global Tobacco Use Gives Warnings

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), if current smoking trends continue, “tobacco could kill a billion people around the world in this century.” 

Article written by guest writer Rin Mitchell

What’s the Latest Development?

An international survey revealed that in developing countries nearly 50 percent of men and one in 10 women use tobacco. The Global Adult Tobacco Survey (GATS), examined “smoking trends among people ages 15 and older from 16 countries, estimating that there are 852 million tobacco users in these countries.” Reportedly, “the numbers call for urgent changes in tobacco policy and regulation in developing nations. While tobacco use is declining in industrialized countries, it remains strong — or is even increasing — in low- and middle-income countries, a trend the authors attribute to powerful pro-tobacco forces worldwide.”

What’s Big Idea?

In response to the results of the largest survey on global tobacco use, the World Health Organization is warning smokers of the reality of tobacco use. “Most tobacco users smoke cigarettes: 41% of men and 5% of women, but other popular forms of tobacco include cigars, chewing tobacco and water pipes. Already, nearly 6 million people die from tobacco-related causes each year.”


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