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NAQC Newsroom: Research

Menthol Brand Switching Among Adolescents and Young Adults in the National Youth Smoking Cessation

Thursday, June 14, 2012  
Posted by: Natalia Gromov
Villanti AC, Giovino GA, Barker DC, Mowery PD, Sevilimedu V, Abrams DB. Am J Public Health. 2012 Jul;102(7):1310-1312. Epub 2012 May 17.
This study examined patterns of menthol and non-menthol cigarette use from 2003 to 2005 in a group of adolescent and young adult smokers, ages 16-24. Researchers used data from the National Youth Smoking Cessation Survey, funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, to examine switching between menthol and nonmenthol brands (and in the opposite direction) in adolescents and young adults. Results showed that young smokers are more likely to progress from mentholated tobacco products to nonmentholated varieties over a short period of time. The study also showed that young smokers are more likely to switch from menthol to nonmenthol cigarettes early in their smoking careers, providing further evidence that menthols serve as a starter product for young smokers. Study authors concluded that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration should ban menthol altogether as has already been done with all other flavors.

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