ASH Daily News for 15 March 2019



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UK

  • Portrait of David Attenborough made from cigarette butts revealed

International

  • USA: Big Tobacco and sugary drinks
  • Study: Early menopause in smokers linked to bladder cancer
  • Study: Tobacco control work significantly contribute to decrease in smoking rates

Link of the Week

  • New Report – A Changing Landscape: Stop smoking services and tobacco control in England

 

UK

Portrait of David Attenborough made from cigarette butts revealed

A portrait of David Attenborough by Welsh artist Nathan Wyburn made from cigarette butts was unveiled earlier in the week. The piece, commissioned by ASH Wales, was to highlight the impact of tobacco litter on the environment and was made entirely from discarded cigarette butts collected on beaches in Wales.

Barry Island Primary School assisted members of Keep Wales Tidy in a litter pick on Barry Island beach to collect the butts that were used in the portrait.

Chief executive of Keep Wales Tidy, Lesley Jones said: “We want to debunk the myths and misconceptions around the disposal of cigarette ends. Because of their size, many people don’t recognise cigarette ends as litter and the real damage they can cause. They are not biodegradable and are harmful to our health, wildlife and the environment.”

Source: Barry Island District News, 14 March 2019

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International

USA: Big Tobacco and sugary drinks

Researches looking through the tobacco industry’s archives have discovered that Big Tobacco applied the same marketing tactics to historic sweetened drinks adverts as they did to early cigarette marketing.

Internal communications stored in the Truth Tobacco Industry Documents archive show that when tobacco companies acquired the licenses for some of America’s iconic flavoured beverages, such as Kool-Aid and Hawaiian Punch, in the 1960’s they used their experience with the success of artificial flavourings, colouring and characters to heighten products appeal to children.

With childhood obesity and rates of type 2 diabetes on the rise, the study’s authors have said its despite tobacco companies no longer owning these brands, it’s important to understand how food and beverage companies use certain strategies and tactics to get us hooked on unhealthy products.

Source: New York Times, 14 March 2019

See also: Tobacco industry involvement in children’s sugary drinks market

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Study: Early menopause in smokers linked to bladder cancer

New research has shown that experiencing menopause early is associated with a higher risk of bladder cancer, and that this risk is substantially higher for smokers.

The study which examined more than 220,00 nurses in the US found that smokers who experienced menopause before 45 had a 53% greater chance of developing bladder cancer, compared to 45% for non-smokers who experienced menopause before this age.

Lead researcher Dr. Mohammad Abufaraj said “Smoking remains the most important risk factor for bladder cancer. Our primary interpretation is that a factor like smoking, which is known to correlate with earlier age at menopause, remains of grave concern as the main cause of in bladder cancer. It reinforces the warning that smoking really is harmful in ways that we might not have easily imagined”.

Source: Medical Xpress, 15 March 2019

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Study: Tobacco control work significantly contribute to decrease in smoking rates

A new study has found that tobacco control work, such as increasing tobacco taxes and smokefree polices, were significantly related to a reduction in smoking prevalence among older adults in European countries.

The study examined data from surveys in adults over 50 years old in 4 waves from 2004 to 2013. It found a negative association between tobacco control policies and smoking among those 50 – 65 years old and with lower levels of education. Also, no association was found among those over 65 years or with a high level of education.

The lead author of the study, Dr Manuel Serrano-Alarcon of NOVA University of Lisbon, said that these results could help inform polices to help reduce socioeconomic inequalities in smoking.

Source: EurekAlert!, 14 March 2019

See study: Tobacco control policies and smoking among older adults: a longitudinal analysis of 10 European countries

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Link of the Week

New Report – A Changing Landscape: Stop smoking services and tobacco control in England

ASH and Cancer Research UK have published the 5th annual report on local tobacco control.

The report found:
• 44% of local authorities no longer have a specialist stop smoking service open to all smokers in their area (56% continue to provide a universal specialist service with a further 9% targeting their specialist support to groups of smokers such as pregnant women and people with a mental health condition).
• Local councils who retained a specialist model had higher rates of quitting than those with less specialist support.
• Over 100,000 smokers no longer have access to any local authority commissioned support to quit smoking across 3% of local authorities that have cut all provision.

ASH and CRUK call for the Government to properly and sustainably fund public health and local authorities to coordinate their tobacco control efforts with other partners to deliver the best possible support.

Read report