The global fight to end the destruction of lives from tobacco is something I can get behind. Today is World No Tobacco Day – a global initiative from the World Health Organization.
Some statistics that many public health professionals are aware of but always a good reminder:
- The tobacco epidemic kills nearly 6 million people each year, of whom:
- more than 5 million are users and ex users
- more than 600 000 are nonsmokers exposed to second-hand smoke
- Smokers are more susceptible to certain communicable diseases, such as tuberculosis and pneumonia
- After high blood pressure, tobacco use is the biggest contributor to the epidemic of noncommunicable diseases — such as heart attack, stroke, cancer and emphysema — which accounts for 63% of deaths
- No consumer product kills as many people and as needlessly as does tobacco. It killed 100 million people in the 20th century. Unless we act, it could kill up to 1 billion people in the 21st. All of these deaths will have been entirely preventable
Here is the 2011 PSA for World Tobacco Day:
Some interesting news recently popped up about the dangers of hookah – which some young people seem to think isn’t as bad as smoking cigarettes.
For some more interactive content throughout the day, check out the #WNTD hashtag on Twitter to keep up with the conversation, links and more.