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FTC Releases 2011 Cigarette and Smokeless Tobacco Reports



FTC_logo_2013This news release provides highlights of two newly available FTC reports: Federal Trade Commission Cigarette Report for 2011 and Federal Trade Commission Smokeless Tobacco Report for 2011. According to the Cigarette Report, the amount spent on cigarette advertising and promotion by the largest cigarette companies in the U.S. rose from $8.05 billion in 2010 to $8.37 billion in 2011,  due mainly to an increase in spending on price discounts, or discounts paid to cigarette retailers or wholesalers in order to reduce the price of cigarettes to consumers; spending on price discounts increased from $6.49 billion in 2010 to $7.00 billion in 2011; and the number of cigarettes sold to wholesalers and retailers in the U.S. declined from 281.6 billion in 2010 to 273.6 billion in 2011. The Smokeless Tobacco Report announces spending on advertising and promotion by the major manufacturers of smokeless tobacco products in the U.S. rose from $444.2 million in 2010 to $451.7 million in 2011, with price discounts making up the largest spending category and accounting for $168.8 billion; the dollar value of sales by these manufacturers rose from $2.78 billion in 2010 to $2.94 billion in 2011; the weight of smokeless tobacco sold rose from 120.5 million pounds in 2010 to 122.7 million pounds in 2011. The Commission has issued the Cigarette Report periodically since 1967and the Smokeless Tobacco Report periodically since 1987.

Link: Read the full-text reports on the FTC website

Study: Alcoholics Who Smoke May Face Early Brain Aging

SmokingDrinkingThis press release discusses the findings of a recent study showing that alcoholics who smoke have more problems with memory, problem solving, and quick thinking than those who are nonsmokers. For the study, adult participants were divided into four groups. The first group were 39 healthy people who never smoked. The other groups included people seeking treatment for alcoholism after not drinking for one month. Of these, 30 people had never smoked, 21 were former smokers, and 68 were current smokers. The researchers analyzed participants’ mental ability in a number of areas and found that at one month of abstinence, actively smoking [alcohol-dependent participants] had greater-than-normal age effects on measures of learning, memory, processing speed, reasoning and problem-solving, and fine motor skills than that among participants with alcohol problems who never-smokers and former-smokers. In contrast, among participants with alcohol problems, never-smokers and former-smokers showed equivalent changes on all measures with increasing age as the never-smoking controls.

Link: Read the full-text press release online

Smoke-free Homes and Vehicles in 2009-2010

ID 26958 Cars DVD_thumb1A new CDC study finds that almost 11 million nonsmoking adults continue to be exposed to SHS in their homes and 17 million nonsmoking adults are exposed to SHS in a vehicle. Overall, 81% of US adults have smoke-free home rules and 74% have smoke-free rules for their vehicles. For nonsmokers, the rates are even higher with 89% have smoke-free homes rules and 85% have smoke-free vehicle rules. California ranks second among the US states with overall protection against secondhand smoke exposure in homes and cars — 90.1% have smoke-free home rules and 83.8% have smoke-free vehicles rules.

Link: read the full study online

Infographic: The Ultimate Complete Final Social Media Sizing Cheat Sheet

social_media_sizing_chart_thumbThis cheat sheet is a useful resource for projects maintaining social media sites. In June of 2012, LunaMetrics published an infographic listing all of the sizing information for images on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and Pinterest. In response to nearly every social network changing their image sizes, LunaMetrics updated the social media sizing cheat sheet, which now includes a simple text list of the pixel dimensions. The entire sheet was redesigned and incorporated a few more social networks. As sizing changes are implemented across social networks, LunaMetrics will update the sheet accordingly.


Link: View the cheat sheet online

Teens’ Use of Smokeless Tobacco Holds Steady

A new JAMA study comparing youth smokeless tobacco use in 2000 and in 2011, found only a slight decrease in use. Overall, the percentage of youth reporting using smokeless was 5.3% in 2000 and 5.2% in 2011. During that time, there was a drop in smokeless tobacco use among youth aged 9-14, but an increase among teens aged 15-17. Relatively low prices for this form of tobacco, compared to cigarettes, might be stalling efforts to curb uptake among youth.



New Study on Thirdhand Smoke in California Hotel Rooms

This recent study of 40 California hotels with and without complete smoking bans, found that partial smoking bans do not protect guests staying in non-smoking rooms from thirdhand smoke and nicotine exposure. Surface nicotine, air nicotine, and 3EP levels were higher in both non-smoking and smoking rooms of hotels with partial smoking bans. Air nicotine levels were 40% higher in nonsmoking rooms of hotels with partial smoking bans than those with total bans. Guests staying in hotels with partial bans had higher levels of finger nicotine and urinary cotinine than those staying in hotels with total bans. “Partial smoking bans in hotels do not protect non-smoking guests from exposure to tobacco smoke and tobacco-specific carcinogens,” the authors concluded. “Non-smokers are advised to stay in hotels with complete smoking bans.”


Link: Read the press release on the Tobacco Control journal website (accessed 5/2013)

Vitamin E Boosts Health Benefits of Smoking Cessation



This news release discusses findings in a recent study suggesting that vitamin E can accelerate the health benefits that occur when people quit smoking. Thirty smokers were recruited to participate in a in a 7-day no-smoking trial, with blood markers of inflammation and blood vessel function measured before and after the trial. After 7 days of not smoking, participants saw an increase in their vascular function by an average of 2.8%. Those who quit smoking and also took the gamma-tocopherol form of vitamin E showed a 1.5% additional improvement in vascular function. While these changes in vascular function may appear to be small, previous large-scale studies suggest that every 1% increase in vascular function – or improvement in the blood vessel’s ability to dilate – translates into a 13% drop in risk of developing heart disease later in life.


Link: Read the full news release online

National Prevention Week

Day 1  Prevention & Cessation of Tobacco

On Sunday, May 12, SAMHSA  will kick off it’s annual National Prevention Week with Prevention & Cessation of Tobacco. The event is an annual health observance dedicated to increasing public awareness of, and action around, substance abuse and mental health issues. Activity guides, toolkits, webinars, factsheets, and other online resources are available to promote smoking cessation in your community ~ check it out here!


Link: For more information, visit the SAMHSA website

Smoking, Being Overweight, Decrease Brain Function Even In Younger Adults – Study

This news release discusses results of a recent study showing that adults as young as 35 are susceptible to declines in brain function as a result of cardiovascular risk factors like smoking or being overweight.The study examined 3,778 people between ages 35 to 82, and measured how susceptible they were to cardiac events, and then compared that data with patients’ scores on tests designed to measure cognitive function. Findings show that people who were at the highest risk for heart disease performed 50 percent worse on cognitive tests compared to those at lower risk for heart disease.


Link: Read the news release online

Do Anti-Smoking Commercials Work? Brain Scans Reveal the Answer

According to this news release, a new study claims that brain imaging can determine which aspects of an anti-smoking public service announcement (PSA) will convince a smoker to quit. During the study, 71 smokers were asked to view a series of short, 30-second antismoking PSAs, while their brains were scanned by functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). One month after the screening, the researchers found that activation in one brain region, the dorsal medial prefrontal cortex (dmPFC), predicted whether a person would eventually reduce their cigarette consumption. The largest spikes in dmPFC brain activity were seen when the PSAs had a strong argument, regardless of the level of special effects.


Link: Full-text article available online

Debating Age Limits on Tobacco in New York

This news article explains that the New York City Council has taken up a proposal to change the minimum age for tobacco purchases from 18 to 21, the strictest such limits in any major American city. Christine C. Quinn, the City Council speaker, has cited data showing that 80 percent of smokers begin before age 21. While most tobacco researchers agree that age restrictions will do no harm and may well help reduce the incidence of smoking among teenagers, firm scientific proof for their effectiveness is hard to find. Amanda Amos, a professor of health promotion at the University of Edinburgh who has published widely on teenage smoking, agreed that the data on whether age laws work is not completely convincing, but she does believe that “the more you put into enforcement, the better it works.” The new law does not change the penalties to retailers for selling to underage customers, and it does not criminalize smoking or the possession of cigarettes by people under 21.


Link: Full-text article available online

Magnetic Brain Stimulation May Temporarily Dull Nicotine Craving

This news release discusses a study that found that noninvasive stimulation of an area of the brain linked to addiction seems to temporarily ease smokers’ cravings for nicotine. Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) is already approved in the United States as a treatment for major depression. The researchers found that in general, the smokers craved for nicotine after seeing tempting images, but the cravings were reduced by an average of almost 30 percent after 15 minutes of transcranial magnetic stimulation. Whether brain stimulation could enhance smokers’ willpower or help them quit is still unknown, but if further research supports it, transcranial magnetic stimulation could become a smoking cessation tool.


Kids’ Smoking Influences May Change Over Time

This news release discusses the Midwestern Prevention Project, which followed approximately 1,000 teens from 7th to 12th grade. The investigators found that kids’ smoking behavior is significantly affected by the habits of their peers and their parents in both middle school and high school. The influence of friends, however, is stronger in middle school. Although parents’ influence started to decrease in the final two years of high school, it did not change between middle school and high school. Among students in grades 9 and 10, girls were more affected by their friends’ smoking behavior than boys, but in grades 10 and 12, friends and parents had less influence on girls. Boys, on the other hand, were increasingly swayed by their friends’ smoking habits in grades 10 and 12.


Link: Read the full abstract online

Hookah Smoking No Less Harmful Than Cigarettes, Study Finds

This study  found that hookah smoke may be different from that of cigarette smoke, but that doesn’t make it any less harmful.  For the study, thirteen participants smoked an average of 11 cigarettes a day or three water pipe sessions a day. Results showed that urine levels of benzene byproduct — linked with higher leukemia risk — and breath levels of carbon monoxide levels — which are particularly bad for people with heart risks — were higher after smoking hookah, compared with smoking cigarettes. Hookah smoking has increased in the state, up 40% from 2005 to 2008.


Happy Earth Day! Don’t miss today’s Webinar Unveiling of CTCP Tobacco Waste Reduction Toolkit!

Unveiling the Tobacco Waste Reduction Toolkit – Webinar April 22nd In celebration of Earth Day April 22, 2013, CTCP is unveiling the Tobacco Waste Reduction Toolkit. Please join the webinar if you are interested in learning about ways to engage communities on tobacco waste and policy-based activities. The toolkit is a compilation of past successes, lessons learned, statewide resources, templates, mapping tools (GIS), and so much more! The toolkit also includes tips and steps for successful clean-up surveys, strengthening partnerships, and how to educate and advocate for tobacco-free policies. By raising awareness on the environmental impact of tobacco waste, CTCP and local projects can continue to change the social norm of tobacco’s presence to ‘unacceptable’! See the attached is the information for joining the webinar.


Link: Click this link for information on joining the webinar

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