LOOP TAT Performs at “It’s About a Billion Lives” Symposium; New Research Study on Tobacco Retailers in Rural & Urban Areas

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Touching Hearts to Move Minds
LOOP Tailored Assistance Trainer (TAT) Tasha “Sixfootah The Poet” Turner brought the house down at “It’s About a Billion Lives” Symposium on February 1st at UCSF’s Cole Hall.
“Sixfootah” Turner is pictured above performing at the event as well as posing afterward with LOOP Director Dr. Valerie Yerger and Elena Costa, Program Consultant at CTCP. Turner is also featured above with UCSF’s Dr. Stan Glantz. We are elated that one of our own trainers can make such an impact through her creativity, knowledge and art! *SNAPS*
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Watch the performance here!

Did You Know? Smoking Prevalence Differs by Marital Status and Race/Ethnicity


It is unclear whether health risk behaviors differ by nuanced marital statuses and race/ethnicity. A recently published study examined the association between detailed marital status and current cigarette smoking among U.S. adults by race/ethnicity. Data were from four Health Information National Trends (HINTS) study cycles collected in 2011-2017 with a nationally representative sample of adults 30 years and older (n = 11,889).


Findings included:

·         Adults who had the highest prevalence of cigarette smoking were non-Hispanic Black cohabiters (36%), separated non-Hispanic White adults (35%), and single/never married Hispanic adults (28%).

·         Widowed adults had lower cigarette smoking prevalence than those who were divorced or separated across races/ethnicities.  


Source: Ramsey et al. (2019). Association between marital status and cigarette smoking: Variation by race and ethnicity. Preventive Medicine, Feb;119:48-51. doi: 10.1016/j.ypmed.2018.12.010. Epub 2018 Dec 18.

Study Examines why Bisexual Young Adults Use Tobacco at Higher Rates


Little is known about why bisexual people use tobacco at higher rates than any other sexual identity group. Non-binary sexualities, such as bisexuality, exist within the socially constructed borderland between homosexuality and heterosexuality. A newly published study examined everyday smoking contexts and practices of bisexual individuals. Participants (n = 17; ages 18-26, California) identified as bisexual, pansexual, and/or queer.


Findings included:

·         Survey smoking patterns and situational predictors were similar to other young adults’.

·         However, interviews revealed unique roles of tobacco use in participants’ navigation of differently sexualized spaces in everyday life: 1) stepping away from uncomfortable situations related to bisexual identity; 2) facilitating belonging to LGBTQ+ community; and 3) recovering from bisexual identity perception management.


Source: McQuoid et al (2019). Tobacco use in the sexual borderlands: The smoking contexts and practices of bisexual young adults. Health & Place, Jan 10. pii: S1353-8292(18)30669-5. doi: 10.1016/j.healthplace.2018.12.010. [Epub ahead of print]

Emotional Abuse, in Combination with Physical and/or Sexual Abuse, Predicts Youth Smoking

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A recently published study examined the role of emotional abuse in predicting youth smoking. Data were drawn from the Longitudinal Studies of Child Abuse and Neglect. The study found that emotional abuse, in combination with physical and/or sexual abuse, predicted youth smoking, whereas the other types of abuse (physical and/or sexual abuse), or emotional abuse alone, did not. The researchers concluded that it is important to document critical influential factors to better inform intervention efforts.


Source: Lewis et al. (2019). The Role of Emotional Abuse in Youth Smoking. American Journal of Preventive Medicine, Jan;56(1):93-99. doi: 10.1016/j.amepre.2018.08.020.

Did You Know? Sexual Minority Individuals More Likely to Have Severe Tobacco Use Disorder

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Sexual minority individuals have heightened risk for substance use; however, previous studies have not assessed severity of alcohol use disorders (AUDs), tobacco use disorders (TUDs), and drug use disorders (DUDs) among lesbian/gay and bisexual individuals and those “not sure” of their sexual identity compared with heterosexual individuals. A newly published study examined how three dimensions of sexual orientation (identity, attraction, and behavior) relate to severity of AUD, TUD, and DUD. This study used cross-sectional national data (N = 36,309) from the National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions-III.


Findings included:

·         Sexual minority respondents had higher odds of severe AUD or TUD than heterosexual respondents.

·         Those “not sure” of their sexual identity had higher odds of severe AUD, TUD, and DUD than heterosexual respondents.


The researchers concluded that bisexual and “not sure” U.S. adults are more likely to have a severe AUD and TUD. They also demonstrate the importance of treatment strategies that address sexual minority-specific risks, particularly for bisexual individuals and those “not sure” of their sexual identity.


Source: Boyd et al. (2019). Severity of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Drug Use Disorders Among Sexual Minority Individuals and Their “Not Sure” Counterparts. LGBT Health, Jan;6(1):15-22. doi: 10.1089/lgbt.2018.0122. Epub 2019 Jan 14.

“It’s About a Billion Lives” Annual Symposium is This Friday



When: Friday, February 1, 2019

Time: 8:00 AM – 12:30 PM PST

Where: UCSF Cole Hall

Keynote Speaker, Vera Luiza da Costa e Silva, MD, PhD, Head of the Convention Secretariat, WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, presents: 

“The WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control: An International Treaty to Counter a Transnational Industry” 

“Using apps, maps, and stories to understand tobacco use disparities,” Julia McQuoid, PhD, MSc, Postdoctoral Fellow, Center for Tobacco Control Research and Education

“Tobacco cessation as a pathway out of homelessness,” Maya Vijayaraghavan, MD, MAS, Assistant Professor, Division of General Internal Medicine (ZSFG)

“No To Tobacco,” Tasha “Sixfootah The Poet” *THE LOOP’S OWN!!*

“Toxicant exposure and effects from electronic and combustible cigarettes,” Gideon St. Helen, PhD, Assistant Professor of Medicine, Division of Clinical Pharmacology

“Trends and tales of flavored tobacco use among young people,” Shannon Watkins, PhD, Postdoctoral Fellow, Center for Tobacco Control Research and Education

Closing Remarks, Catherine Gilliss, PhD, RN, FAAN, Dean and Professor, UCSF School of Nursing

Did You Know? Availability of Cheaper Cigarettes may Diminish Effects of Tobacco Price and Tax Increases


A newly published study conducted focus groups with low-income smokers in order to understand the tobacco acquisition practices of low-income smokers in New York State in light of high cigarette prices due to high cigarette taxes. The qualitative data analysis revealed that some smokers switched to untaxed cigarettes from Native American reservations, whereas low-income smokers in NYC described convenient sources of bootlegged cigarettes (packs or loosies) in their local neighborhood stores, through acquaintances, or on the street. Familiarity with the retailer was key to accessing bootlegged cigarettes from retailers. The researchers concluded that access to cheaper cigarettes discouraged quit attempts and allowed continued smoking. The availability of lower priced cigarettes may attenuate public health efforts aimed at reducing smoking prevalence through price and tax increases.


Source: Curry et al. (2018). How Low-Income Smokers in New York Access Cheaper Cigarettes. American Journal of Health Promotion, Oct 9:890117118805060. doi: 10.1177/0890117118805060. [Epub ahead of print]

Youth Hookah Use Strongly Associated With Co-Use of Flavored Tobacco Products

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A recently published study examined three social dimensions of youth hookah smoking: frequency, places smoked, and descriptive social norms. Researchers analyzed data from the 2016 National Youth Tobacco Survey of US sixth- to 12th-graders (n = 20,675).

 Findings included:

·         Overall, 10.5% reported smoking hookah ≥1 time in their lifetime. Of these, 65.8% were former, 26.3% were current occasional, and 7.9% were current frequent smokers.

·         Overall, 59.3% of students overestimated hookah smoking prevalence in their grade.

·         Current frequent smoking was most strongly predicted by living with a hookah smoker, speaking a second language other than English, and co-use of mentholated cigarettes or other flavored non-cigarette tobacco products.

·         The top 3 places hookah was smoked were a friend’s house (47.7%), the respondent’s own house (31.8%), and another family member’s house (20.8%).


The researchers concluded that because the home environment was the most common place for youth hookah smoking, home-tailored interventions that encourage voluntary smoke-free rules and warn about the dangers of social smoking could help denormalize hookah smoking.


Source: Agaku et al. (2018). Social aspects of hookah smoking among US youth. Pediatrics, July 2, [Epub ahead of print]

Did You Know? Tobacco Tax Policy Alone May Not Be Enough To Increase Cessation Among African Americans


A newly published study examined the effects of cigarette price on intention to quit, quit attempts, and successful cessation among African American smokers in the U.S. and explored whether price effects differed by income level and menthol use status. Researchers analyzed cross-sectional data from 2006-2007 and 2010-2011 Tobacco Use Supplements to the Current Population Survey from 4,213 African American recent active smokers.

Findings included:

·         There was no indication that price was associated with quit attempts or successful cessation, but price was positively associated with increased odds of intending to quit among African American smokers.

·         In contrast, prices were positively associated with intention to quit and quit attempts for White smokers.

·         The association between price and intention to quit was significantly positive for African American low-income and menthol smokers but was not statistically significant for African American high-income and non-menthol smokers.

·         There was no evidence of a price effect on quit attempts and successful cessation for each subgroup of African Americans.

The researchers concluded that tobacco tax policy alone may not be enough to increase quit attempts or successful cessation among African Americans. Community-based cessation programs tailored towards African American smokers, especially low-income menthol smokers, are needed.

Source: Keeler, Max, Yerger, Yao, Wang, Ong & Sung (2018). Effects of cigarette prices on intention to quit, quit attempts, and successful cessation among African American smokers. Nicotine & Tobacco Research, Jul 18, [Epub ahead of print].