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World No Tobacco Day: Men Still Carry Burden of Tobacco Use, Says WHO Report

The data from all countries, including India, showed that the burden of tobacco use was largely on men, and their rates of reducing this consumption were far slower than those of the smaller number of female consumers.

Aradhna Wal | News18.com

Updated:May 31, 2018, 10:03 AM IST
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World No Tobacco Day: Men Still Carry Burden of Tobacco Use, Says WHO Report
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Despite some progress, the world is off course from meeting its targets to reduce smoking and smokeless tobacco by 2025, a new WHO report revealed.

Published on May 31, the global No Tobacco Day, the report on global tobacco use trends said that that countries will reduce the prevalence of consumption by 22 percent, by 2025, instead of the intended 30 percent.

The data from all countries, including India, showed that the burden of tobacco use was largely on men, and their rates of reducing this consumption were far slower than those of the smaller number of female consumers.

While women are on track to achieve their reduction targets, countries need to intensify working with male tobacco users.

For example, an estimated 11.1 percent people, aged 15 and above, smoked in India in 2016. Of these, 20.6 percent were male and 1.9 percent female. The rate of daily smoking was 10.1 percent. Of this, 18.1 percent were male and 1.6 percent female.

In absolute numbers, the report showed that there are over a 105 million (105690000) current tobacco smokers in India, of which over 97 million (97850000) are men and over 7 million (7840000) are women.

There are 92 million (92075000) daily smokers of which 85 million (85619000) are men and 6 million (6456000) are women.

Though the world has seen a considerable drop in tobacco users, the total number has remained almost the same because of an increase in population. There are 1.1 billion adult smokers in the world today, and at least 367 million smokeless tobacco users. The number of smokers was also 1.1 billion in 2000. The gender skew in users starts early, as of now there are over 24 million children aged 13 to 15 who smoke tobacco, 17 million are boys and 7 million are girls.

Similarly, of the 367 million users of smokeless tobacco, 237 million are men and 129 million are women.

The most users of smokeless tobacco are found in southeast Asia, especially India and Bangladesh. The report showed that young people in the region had the highest prevalence of use of smokeless tobacco (7.3 percent) and the highest prevalence among both boys (9.5 percent) and girls (4.8 percent). These users accounted for nearly 60 percent of all smokeless tobacco users aged 13–15 years in the world.

However, there have been some gains. In 2000, 43 percent of men and 11 percent of women smoked tobacco. By 2015, this was down to 34 percent men and 6 percent women.

The reduction comes from a substantial drop in users in the Americas and Europe (75.0 million) South-East Asia (3.9 million during 2000–2010) and Western Pacific (3.2 million during 2010–2015) regions. Still, these were countered by an increase of 53.9 million additional smokers in four WHO regions: African (14.1 million), Eastern Mediterranean (26.2 million), South-East Asian (1.6 million in the period 2010–2015) and Western Pacific (12.0 million in the period 2000–2010). ​

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