You are here

Tobacco

Latest Data

Explore the latest data for the LHI topic Tobacco.
Download the latest Tobacco data in spreadsheet format [XLSX - 32 KB]

Where We’ve Been and Where We’re Going

Over the past decade, the current cigarette smoking rate among adults ages 18 and over decreased by 16.7%, from 21.5% in 2003 to 17.9% in 2013 (age adjusted). Current adult cigarette smoking rates were higher among people who identify as gay/lesbian (24.1%) or bisexual (25.5%) compared to people who identify as straight (17.7%). The rate of cigarette use in the last 30 days among students in grades 9–12 also decreased in the past decade by 28.3%, from 21.9% in 2003 to 15.7% in 2013. 
 

Leading Health Indicators

Leading Health Indicators (LHI) are critical health issues that – if tackled appropriately – will dramatically reduce the leading causes of death and preventable illnesses. The LHIs for Tobacco are:

Adults who are current cigarette smokers (TU-1.1)

  • Healthy People 2020 objective TU-1.1 tracks the proportion of adults who are current cigarette smokers.
    • HP2020 Baseline: In 2008, 20.6% of adults ages 18 and over were current cigarette smokers (age adjusted). 
    • HP2020 Target: 12.0% (retained from HP2010), a 41.7% improvement over the baseline. 
    • The percentage of adults ages 18 and over who were current cigarette smokers decreased 16.7% between 2003 and 2013, from 21.5% to 17.9% (age adjusted).    

In 2013, among adults ages 18 and over:

  • Asian adults had the lowest rate of current cigarette smoking among racial and ethnic groups, 9.4% (age adjusted). Rates for other racial and ethnic groups were (age adjusted):
    • 27.8% among Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander adults; about 3 times the best group rate
    • 26.2% among adults of 2 or more races; almost 3 times the best group rate
    • 21.5% among American Indian or Alaska Native adults; almost 2.5 times the best group rate
    • 20.2% among white non-Hispanic adults; more than twice the best group rate 
    • 18.0% among black non-Hispanic adults; almost twice the best group rate
    • 11.7% among Hispanic adults; 25% higher than the best group rate
  • Adult females had a lower rate of current smoking than adult males (15.5% vs. 20.5%, age adjusted).
  • Adults from families with incomes at 600% of the poverty threshold or higher had the lowest rate of current cigarette smoking among family income groups, 9.3% (age adjusted). Rates for adults in other income groups were (age adjusted):
    • 29.5% for those with incomes under the poverty threshold; more than 3 times the best group rate
    • 23.0% for those with incomes 100–199% of the poverty threshold; about 2.5 times the best group rate
    • 17.8% for those with incomes 200–399% of the poverty threshold; nearly twice the best group rate
    • 14.6% for those with incomes 400–599% of the poverty threshold; more than 1.5 times the best group rate
  • Adults born outside of the U.S. had a lower rate of current cigarette smoking than adults born in the U.S. (10.3% and 19.7%, age adjusted, respectively).
  • Adults without activity limitations had a lower rate of current cigarette smoking than adults with activity limitations (16.2% and 29.3%, age adjusted, respectively).
  • Adults who live in metropolitan areas had a lower rate of current cigarette smoking than adults living in non-metropolitan areas (16.6% and 26.0%, age adjusted, respectively).
  • Adults who identified as straight had a lower rate of current cigarette smoking (17.7%, age adjusted) than adults who identified as gay/lesbian or bisexual:
    • 24.1% among adults who identified as gay/lesbian; almost 1.5 times the best group rate
    • 25.5% among adults who identified as bisexual; almost 1.5 times the best group rate

Current Cigarette Smoking by Sexual Orientation, 2013

Tobacco and Sexual Orientation Web Graphic

Data source: National Health Interview Survey (NHIS), CDC/NCHHSTP.

Also in 2013:

  • Among age groups, adults ages 65 and over had the lowest rate of current smoking, 8.8%. Rates for other age groups were:
    • 19.7% among adults aged 18–44; more than twice the best group rate 
    • 19.9% among adults aged 45–64; almost 2.5 times the best group rate
  • Among education groups, adults ages 25 and over with an advanced degree had the lowest rate of current cigarette smoking, 5.6% (age adjusted). Rates for other levels of educational attainment were (age adjusted):
    • 8.8% among adults with a 4-year college degree
    • 17.7% among adults with an associate’s degree; more than 3 times the best group rate
    • 20.7% among adults with some college education; more than 3.5 times the best group rate
    • 25.6% among adults with a high school education; more than 4.5 times the best group rate
    • 25.8% among adults with less than a high school education; more than 4.5 times the best group rate

Current Cigarette Smoking by Educational Attainment, 2013

LHI Web Graphic

Data source: National Health Interview Survey (NHIS), CDC/NCHHSTP. 

  • Among health insurance status groups, adults ages 18–64 with private health insurance had the lowest rate of current cigarette smoking (14.7%, age adjusted) compared to adults with public or no health insurance (28.7% and 29.7%, age adjusted, respectively). The rates of current cigarette smoking for adults with public or no insurance were about twice as high as those with private health insurance.

Endnotes:

  • All disparities described are statistically significant at the 0.05 level of significance. 
  • Data (except those by education, health insurance, and age group) are age adjusted to the 2000 standard population using the age groups 18–24, 25–34, 35–44, 45–64, and 65 years and over. Data by education are adjusted using the age groups 25–34, 35–44, 45–64, and 65 years and over. Data by health insurance status are adjusted using the age groups 18–24, 25–34, 35–44, 45–54, and 55–64. Data by age group are not age adjusted. Age-adjusted rates are weighted sums of age-specific rates.
  • Current cigarette smokers are defined as persons who have smoked at least 100 cigarettes in their lifetime and now report smoking cigarettes every day or some days. 
  • Data for this measure are available annually and come from the National Health Interview Survey (NHIS), CDC/NCHHSTP. 
  • The terms “Hispanic or Latino” and “Hispanic” are used interchangeably in this report.  

Back to Top

Adolescents who smoked cigarettes in the past 30 days (TU-2.2)

  • Healthy People 2020 objective TU-2.2 tracks the proportion of students in grades 9–12 who smoked cigarettes in the last 30 days.
    • HP2020 Baseline: In 2009, 19.5% of students in grades 9–12 smoked cigarettes in the last 30 days.
    • HP2020 Target: 16.0% (retained from HP2010), a 17.9% improvement over the baseline. 
    • The percentage of students in grades 9–12 who smoked cigarettes in the last 30 days decreased 28.3% between 2003 and 2013, from 21.9% to 15.7%, exceeding the Healthy People 2020 target.  
 
In 2013, among students in grades 9-12:
 
  • Black non-Hispanic students had the lowest rate of cigarette use in the past 30 days among racial and ethnic groups, 8.2%. Rates for other racial and ethnic groups were:
    • 10.5% among Asian students; not significantly different than the best group rate  
    • 11.8% among Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander students; not significantly different than the best group rate  
    • 14.0% among Hispanic students; more than 1.5 times the best group rate  
    • 16.9% among students of 2 or more races; about twice the best group rate  
    • 17.9% among American Indian or Alaska Native students; more than twice the best group rate  
    • 18.6% among White non-Hispanic students; almost 2.5 times the best group rate 
 

Cigarette Use in the Past 30 Days among Students by Race/Ethnicity, 2013

Data Source: Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System (YRBSS), CDC/NCHHSTP.

  • Female students had a lower rate of cigarette use in the last 30 days than males (15.0% and 16.4%, respectively), although the difference was not statistically significant.
  • Students in 9th grade had the lowest rate of cigarette use in the last month (10.2%). Rates for other grades were:
    • 13.2% among 10th grade students; almost 1.5 times the best group rate
    • 21.1% among 11th grade students, more than twice the best group rate
    • 19.2% among 12th grade students; nearly twice the best group rate

Endnotes:

  • All disparities described are statistically significant at the 0.05 level of significance, unless otherwise stated. 
  • Students are classified as using cigarettes in the past 30 days if they report smoking cigarettes on 1 or more of the 30 days preceding the survey.
  • Data for this measure are available biennially from the Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System (YRBSS), CDC/NCHHSTP. 
  • The terms “Hispanic or Latino” and “Hispanic” are used interchangeably in this report.  

Back to Top