HealthDay News — If the United States were to institute a ban on menthol cigarettes, 1.3 million smokers are estimated to quit, according to a study published online April 28 in Tobacco Control.
Geoffrey T. Fong, PhD, from the University of Waterloo in Canada, and colleagues estimated the impact of Canada’s menthol ban on quitting using data from the Ontario Menthol Ban Study and the International Tobacco Control Policy Evaluation Canada Survey and projected the impact of a menthol ban in the United States.
The researchers found that after the menthol cigarette ban, daily menthol smokers were more likely than nonmenthol smokers to have quit smoking (difference, 8.0%), with similar findings seen for daily plus nondaily smokers (difference, 7.3%). If the United States instituted a similar menthol ban, the projected number of smokers who would quit would be 789,724 daily smokers (including 199,732 African Americans) and 1.34 million daily plus nondaily smokers (including 381,272 African Americans).
“Our study confirms that Canada’s menthol cigarette ban led to substantial public health benefits,” Fong said in a statement. “Smoking is the number one preventable cause of death and disease in Canada, the United States, and globally.”
One author disclosed financial ties to the pharmaceutical industry; two authors have ties to the electronic cigarette industry.