Did You Know? Striking Differences in Tobacco Use Prevalence and Tobacco Product Preferences among Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders (AANHPIs)

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Data from the 2009-2010 National Adult Tobacco Survey were analyzed to examine differences in prevalence and consumption of various tobacco products among Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders (AANHPIs). 
 
Findings included: 
·         Ever use of cigarettes ranged from as low as 9% among Vietnamese respondents to as high as 48% among NHPIs.
·         Current use of cigarettes was least prevalent among Chinese (5%), Asian Indians (6%) and Vietnamese (7%) and most prevalent among Filipinos (14%), Koreans (15%), Japanese (19%) and NHPIs (20%). 
·         Current cigarette smoking was also more prevalent in males versus females in all ethnic groups except Chinese. Sex disparities in current cigarette smoking were most notable among Vietnamese and Asian Indians (with almost all male smokers), and among Koreans (approx. 17 point difference in smoking prevalence between males and females).
·         Preference for menthol cigarettes was slightly higher for AA and NHPI cigarette smokers overall (39%) compared to non AA and NHPI smokers (36%), and was particularly high for Filipino and NHPI cigarette smokers (45% and 46%, respectively). 
·         The prevalence of current hookah use varied greatly by ethnicity (ranging from as low as 0.4% among Filipinos to 14.6% among Koreans). 
·         Current cigar use was highest among NHPI (10%) and Japanese (8%) males.
·         Ever use of smokeless tobacco use was notably high among Japanese (42%) and NHPI males (29%).
 
The researchers concluded that community-based and regulatory approaches should be employed to reduce use of all tobacco products, especially among high prevalence subgroups.
 
Source: Mukherjea et al (2014). Asian American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander Tobacco Use Patterns. American Journal of Health Behavior, 38(3): 362–369.

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