The findings were based on the data analysis and computational modeling infrastructure compiled as part of the Center for the Assessment of Tobacco Regulations. The research team used the Smoking and Vaping Model, a simulation model they had previously developed to study smoking and vaping behaviour with regards to menthol and non-menthol cigarettes.
They found that in the presence of a menthol ban, combined menthol and non-menthol cigarette smoking would decline by 15% by 2026. Deaths attributable to smoking and vaping were estimated to drop by about 5% and life-years lost by 8.8%. This would translate to 16,250 deaths less per year and 11 million life-years gained (almost 300,000 per year) over a 40-year period.
Canada’s menthol ban
Supporting these figures, data from Canada has shown that the local menthol ban has had a positive effect on local smoking cessation rates. The study suggests that a similar ban in the United States would have even greater benefits, given that menthol cigarettes are even more popular across the States. “From our findings, we estimate that banning menthol cigarettes in the U.S. would lead an additional 923,000 smokers to quit, including 230,000 African American smokers,” said researcher Geoffrey Fong, principal investigator of the International Tobacco Control Policy Evaluation Project.
To this effect, the FDA has recently announced the long discussed ban on menthols. A consultation process has been open and comments will be we accepted until tomorrow July 5th.
More data confirming the effectivity of menthol bans
Meanwhile, a recent study published on JAMA Internal Medicine has also found that a ban on menthol cigarettes in Massachusetts has led to a decline in all cigarette sales across the state. Titled, “Association of Cigarette Sales With Comprehensive Menthol Flavor Ban in Massachusetts,” the study reported that sales of all cigarettes in Massachusetts declined by up to 33% after a ban on menthol-flavoured cigarettes went in effect.
Over the same time period, reported the study, cigarette sales in 33 states that did not set in place a menthol flavour ban fell by 8%, while sales of menthol-flavored cigarettes declined by 3%, said the researchers. “We learn from Massachusetts that a menthol flavor ban effectively reduces both menthol and overall cigarette sales,” sid study co-author Samuel Asare as quoted by UPI.
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