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Hookah Use among California’s Educated Rises despite State Anti-Smoking Efforts

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What’s more, a typical one-hour-long hookah smoking session involves inhaling 100–200 times the volume of smoke inhaled from a single cigarette, according to the CDC.

The UCSD team used data from the statewide California Tobacco Surveys, the largest representative sample on hookah use collected at different points in time from the same source population.

Study results showed from 2005 to 2008, hookah use among all adults increased by more than 40 percent. By 2008, hookah use in California was much higher among young adults -- 24.5 percent among men, 10 percent among women -- than it was among all adults -- 11.2 percent among men, 2.8 percent among women.

Unlike cigarette smoking where those with higher education smoke less, hookah use is higher among those who are more educated, particularly among non-Hispanic whites, the research said.

The UCSD team is urging California policymakers to consider laws that would ban hookah lounges. They believe such a policy would “eliminate the implication that hookah smoking is safer and more socially acceptable than cigarette smoking,” Al-Delaimy said.

Lynette Summerill, an award-winning writer and scuba enthusiast lives in San Diego, CA. In addition to writing about cancer-related issues for EmpowHER, her work has been seen in newspapers and magazines around the world.


California Department of Public Health California Tobacco Control Program. Two Decades of the California Tobacco Control Program: California Tobacco Survey, 1990-2008. Dec. 2010.

UCSD Researchers Alarmed at Rise in Hookah Use Among California Youth. Aug. 19, 2011 UCSD Press Release. accessed online: http://health.ucsd.edu/news/2011/08-19-hookah-use-rising?RSS=Health

Center for Disease Control and Prevention. Smoking and Tobacco Use Fact Sheet: Hookahs. Accessed 23 Aug. 2011 online at : http://www.cdc.gov/tobacco/data_statistics/fact_sheets/tobacco_industry/hookahs

American Journal of Public Health First Look. Increasing Hookah Use in California.

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