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Am J Public Health. 2007 Aug;97(8):1510-4. Epub 2007 Jun 28.

The effects of changes in smoking prevalence on obesity prevalence in the United States.

Author information

  • National Center for Health Statistics, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Hyattsville, MD 20782, USA. kflegal@cdc.gov

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

Reduction of cigarette smoking is an important public health goal. However, lower smoking prevalence may be associated with increased obesity prevalence. I sought to estimate the effect of decreases in smoking prevalence on obesity prevalence in the United States population.

METHODS:

I combined current weight data by smoking status from the 1999-2002 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) with smoking prevalence data from past NHANES surveys to estimate weight status had smoking prevalence not changed.

RESULTS:

Even relatively large changes in the prevalence of smoking were estimated to have little effect on obesity prevalence. For example, if smoking prevalence in 1999-2002 were at the higher 1971-1975 smoking level, the estimated 1999-2002 obesity prevalence would be 22.5% rather than the actual value of 23.9%, a difference of only 1.4 percentage points. Estimates for other weight categories were similarly small.

CONCLUSIONS:

Decreases in the prevalence of cigarette smoking probably had only a small effect, often less than 1 percentage point, on increasing the prevalence of obesity and decreasing the prevalence of healthy weight in the population.

PMID:
17600266
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC1931461
Free PMC Article
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