Louisiana Among States With Most Smokers

Fact Checked by Nate Hamilton

Every year on May 31st the World Health Organization (WHO) recognizes World No Tobacco Day.

WHO began the initiative in 1987 to raise awareness of the dangers of tobacco use. The international campaign targets smokers, urging them to quit, while also drawing attention to the harmful business practices of the world’s mega-tobacco companies.

To observe World No Tobacco Day, LouisianaBets.com broke away from Louisiana sports betting and decided to see how the Pelican State compares to the rest of America when it comes to cigarette smoking and tobacco use.

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Breakdown of Adult Smokers in United States

Below we have ranked the U.S. states based on their smoking rate. Our data comes from the CDC’s 2021 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (CDC - 2021 BRFSS Survey Data and Documentation). The rankings were determined by the percentage of adults who reported “smoking at least 100 cigarettes in their lifetime and currently smoke daily or some days.”

RankState% of Adult Smokers
1Utah7.2
2California8.92
T3Hawaii10.1
T3Maryland10.1
5 Massachusetts10.6
T6New Jersey10.7
T6Washington10.7
8Connecticut11.1
T9Colorado12.0
T9Illinois12.0
T9New York12.0
12New Hampshire12.3
T13Oregon12.4
T13Rhode Island12.4
T13Virginia12.4
T16Arizona13.1
T16Texas13.1
T18Idaho13.3
T18New Mexico13.3
T18Wisconsin13.3
T21Delaware13.4
T21Minnesota13.4
T21Nebraska13.4
T24Montana14.4
T24North Carolina14.4
T24Pennsylvania14.4
27Iowa14.6
28Vermont14.8
T29Georgia15.0
T29North Dakota15.0
31South Dakota15.3
T32Nevada15.5
T32South Carolina15.5
T34Kansas15.6
T34Maine15.6
36Wyoming16.4
37Oklahoma16.9
38Michigan17.0
39Arkansas17.1
40Alabama17.2
T41Indiana17.3
T41Missouri17.3
43Ohio18.0
44Louisiana19.5
T45Kentucky19.6
T45Mississippi19.6
47Tennessee19.7
48Arkansas21.1
49West Virginia22.0

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Nearly Twenty Percent of Louisiana Adults Smoke

Based on these results, the smoking problem in Louisiana is dire, with nearly twenty percent of the adult population being smokers. That’s well above the 11.5% national average in the U.S.

The numbers are even more concerning regarding the youth smoking rate. While the national average of high school smokers is 2%, 7% of teens in Louisiana smoke cigarettes. The gap is even larger when you consider e-cigarette use. 14.% of high schoolers vape nationally, but within the Louisiana borders that number leaps to 25.5% — meaning at least 1 in every 4 high school students in the state use e-cigarettes. 

Overall, it’s estimated that smoking-related health care costs are $1.89 billion within the state of Louisiana, and 7,200 adults die each year as a result of their tobacco use.

If these statistics concern you, then consider beginning your smoke-free journey this May 31st for World No Tobacco Day. For those you have tried to quit in the past, but failed, you’re not alone. Over half of Louisiana smokers have unsuccessfully tried to kick the habit at some point in the past.

For extra support, try reaching out to the state’s Quitline (1-800-QUIT-NOW) for free resources and counseling. 

Bet on yourself and quit smoking today.

Author

Jeff Parker is an entertainment writer for LouisianaBets.com. A writer for film, television and the internet, Jeff is a life long movie buff, with a Masters Degree in Popular Culture. He lives in Halifax, Nova Scotia, where he works full time as documentary filmmaker and producer.

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