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Asia Pac J Public Health. 2013 Sep;25(5 Suppl):75S-83S. doi: 10.1177/1010539513486919. Epub 2013 May 10.

Poverty does not limit tobacco consumption in Cambodia: quantitative estimate of tobacco use under conditions of no income and adult malnutrition.

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1Loma Linda University, Loma Linda, CA, USA.


Current data indicate that under conditions of poverty, tobacco is consumed at the expense of basic needs. In a large national sample from Cambodia, we sought to determine whether tobacco consumption declines under extreme conditions of no income and malnutrition. Our major findings are as follows: (1) Among men, there was no significant difference in the number of cigarettes smoked for no income (425, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 395-456) versus >US$2 per day (442, 95% CI = 407-477); (2) among women, there was no significant difference in the amount of loose tobacco (ie, betel quid) consumed for no income (539 g, 95% CI = 441-637) versus >US$2 per day (558 g, 95% CI = 143-973); (3) for the contrast of no income + malnutrition versus >US$2 per day + no malnutrition in a linear model, there was no significant difference for men who smoked (462 vs 517 cigarettes/month, P = .82) or women who chewed (316 vs 404 g tobacco/month, P = .34), adjusting for confounders. Among the poorest and malnourished Cambodian adults, lack of resources did not appear to prevent them from obtaining smoked or smokeless tobacco.


epidemiology; nutrition/dietetics; population health; population studies; public health; smoking/tobacco/drug abuse

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