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Smoking Still Popular among Food Service, Construction and Mining Workers in the US

Smoker and dog

Though growing awareness about the dangers of cigarette smoking has considerably reduced its popularity in the US, certain pockets of workers are still attracted to this habit in large numbers. A recent federal study reveals that cigarette smoking remains popular among workers in the food services, mining and construction industries.

Smoking Rate Still High in Some Sections
30% of employees in food services, hotel/motel and mining industries are regular smokers, reveals a CDC study that looked at data obtained from 2004 to 2010. Construction workers had the next highest rate at 29.7%. In the last few decades, smoking popularity has dipped by half in the US. But, as the above figures show smoking rates continue to be high among certain sections.

Causes for High Smoking Rate
The education and management sectors reported the least percentage of smoking. Only 9.7% of educators smoke regularly, reveals the study. The researchers say low levels of education, gender and poverty are the biggest causes for high smoking rates.

Less Educated People Smoke More
People with less education are not as informed about tobacco dangers. The survey reveals that smoking rates are highest among male workers aged between 18-24, those with less than high school education, and workers not having health insurance. Smoking is most popular among Midwestern workers. The CDC urges employers to implement anti-smoking policies, like having smoke-free workplaces and extending health insurance for quit smoking treatments.

Effects of Smoking on Health and Economy
Overall, adult smoking in the US has decreased from 42.4% in 1965 to 19.3% in 2010. But, the rate of decline has slowed down in recent years. Smoking and secondhand smoke are the leading causes of preventable disease and death in the US, claiming a toll of about 443,000 American lives every year. Smoking also affects the economy racking up costs of about $193 billion each year in lost productivity and medical expenses.

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