Prevalence of current and ever smoking by age, sex, and Latin American personal or family national background

Figure 3. Prevalence of current and ever smoking by age, sex, and Latin American personal or family national background: the Hispanic Community Health Study/Study of Latinos (Kaplan et al., 2014)

Percentage of Latino Smokers by Country of Origin

Cigarette use varies by country of origin with current smoking rate the highest among Puerto Ricans (men 35.0%, women 32.6%) and Cuban individuals (men 31.3%, women 21.9%), with particularly high smoking intensity among Cubans. Dominican individuals have the lowest smoking rate (men 11.0%, women 11.7%) and Latinos of other national backgrounds have smoking rate that are intermediate between these groups (Figure 2 & Figure 3). Non-daily smoking is common among Latinos, particularly among young men of Mexican background. Being cognizant of these differences is important to design and implement culturally and linguistically appropriate interventions to help Latinos quit smoking.

Abstinence Rates for Men and Women as a Function of Acculturation

Acculturation refers to the process through which a person from one culture adopts the values, culture, and practices of another culture, while still retaining their own heritage culture. Acculturation has important implications on Latinos’ health and well-being, including smoking. Acculturation measures such as country of origin, language, gender, and years living in the U.S. account for part of the variability in Latino smoking patterns. Interestingly, acculturation and smoking behavior show an inverse relationship by gender among Latinos. Acculturation is associated with increased smoking for women and a decrease in smoking for men. In fact, greater acculturation predicts higher abstinence rates for men but not for women (Figure 1).

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