Smoking Down, but Tobacco Use Still a Major Cause of Death, Disease – WHO

While the overall number of people smoking has declined, especially for women, most countries will still not meet their target in reducing tobacco use by 2025. This remains a serious problem as nearly seven million people die every year from tobacco use, including almost 900,000 deaths due to second hand smoke. While the WHO ratified a treaty in 2005 that called for a ban on tobacco advertising and increased taxes, tobacco remains the cause of the world’s leading killers, heart attack and stroke. One of the greatest impediments has been low and middle income countries, in which large tobacco industry lobbies push to maintain their user base by encouraging smoking.

However, progress has certainly been made, reducing the smoking population from 27% in 2000 to 20% in 2016. The Americas have faired the best, being the only region set to meet its 30% reduction goals. Interestingly, this doesn’t include the United States, currently not on track to meet the guidelines due to litigation, taxation issues and packaging problems. Similar problems have occurred in Western Europe, especially in regards to women smoking.

Additionally, India and China are still mostly unaware of the dangers of smoking, due to the lack of regulation and efforts in the regions.

Key Points:

  • 1Fewer people across the globe are smoking, yet World Health Organization asserts that only one country is poised to reduce usage significantly.
  • 2180 countries have ratified a WHO sponsored document, calling for a ban on tobacco advertising and sponsorship.
  • 3The tobacco industry ghoulishly replaces their dying users by actively marketing and pricing for a younger market.

Tobacco kills more than 7 million a year and many people know that it increases the risk of cancer.

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