A report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found sharp increases in total adult consumption of pipe tobacco -- used for roll-your-own cigarettes.
(UPI) -- Americans smoked fewer cigarettes from 2010 to 2011, but the decrease was made up for by increased smoking of cigarette-like cigars, U.S. health officials say.
A report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found sharp increases in total adult consumption of pipe tobacco -- used for roll-your-own cigarettes -- and cigarette-like cigars since 2008 have offset declines in total cigarette consumption.
"From 2000 to 2011, the largest increases were in consumption of pipe tobacco at 482 percent and large cigars at 233 percent," the report said. "The increase in cigars was due largely to tobacco manufacturers adding weight to many small cigars so they can be classified as large cigars and avoid higher taxes and regulation, while at the same time retaining a size and shape very similar to cigarettes."
Total consumption of all smoked tobacco products -- cigarettes, roll-your-own tobacco, pipe tobacco and cigars -- declined by 27.5 percent from 2000 to 2011, but despite the overall decline, the consumption of non-cigarette smoked tobacco products increased by 123 percent, the report said.
"The rise in cigar smoking, which other studies show is a growing problem among youth and young adults, is cause for alarm," Tim McAfee, director of CDC's Office on Smoking and Health, said in a statement. "The surgeon general's report released last March showed getting young people to either quit smoking or never start smoking is the key to ending the tobacco epidemic, because 99 percent of all smokers start before age 26."
The findings were published in the CDC's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.
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