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March 18th, 2012:

Smoking in the movies affects children and youth

From: James Middleton []
Sent: 17 March, 2012 14:20
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Subject: Smoking in the movies affects children and youth

PDF attachment: what the US Surgeon General just said about the R-rating in movies


Watching Movie Stars Light Up May Spur Kids to Smoke

HealthDay – Wed, Mar 14, 2012

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WEDNESDAY, March 14 (HealthDay News) — The more smoking they see in movies, the more likely young adolescents are to start smoking, according to a new study.

Researchers analyzed data from more than 2,000 public-school students in Vermont and New Hampshire who were not regular smokers at the start of the study.

The students provided information about their background, movies watched and use of tobacco in 1999 when they were aged 9 to 14 (early exposure). Follow-up interviews were conducted in 2006 and 2007 when the participants were aged 16 to 22 (late exposure).

The study authors found that students aged 9 to 14 who saw more smoking scenes in movies were 73 percent more likely to become regular smokers than those who saw fewer smoking scenes.

Students aged 16 to 22 who saw more smoking scenes in movies, however, did not have a greater risk of smoking than those who saw fewer smoking scenes, according to the study published March 14 in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

“These results indicate that early exposure to smoking depicted in movies is associated with established smoking in adolescents, whereas late exposure is not,” Dr. Brian Primack, of the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, and colleagues said in a journal news release. “These findings suggest that prevention efforts should focus on the reduction of exposure to smoking depicted in movies when children are at a young age.”

Although the study uncovered an association between high exposure to smoking scenes in movies at a young age and becoming a regular smoker, it did not prove a cause-and-effect relationship. The authors also noted that the study was limited in that it focused only on white students enrolled in Vermont and New Hampshire public schools.

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Health Ministry looking at cutting nicotine in cigarettes by half

Published: Sunday March 18, 2012 MYT 2:48:00 PM

Updated: Sunday March 18, 2012 MYT 3:46:23 PM


Health Ministry looking at cutting nicotine in cigarettes by half


BENTONG: The Health Ministry is looking at reducing the nicotine content in cigarettes by half to curb the smoking addiction.

“Currently, the nicotine content in a stick of cigarette is 20mg. We hope that by reducing the amount, we can at least help smokers take care of their health and control their addiction,” its minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai said.

Liow said no target had been fixed as the plan was still in discussion but hoped that it could be cut down by 10mg.

He said the smoking cessation programme introduced in health clinics had been very successful.

“The success rate in stopping smoking increased from 60% to 80%. We want to move this programme to the community level next.

“However, smokers have to know that the habit can only be kicked through their own willpower.

“Otherwise, there is no use in joining the programme at all,” he said after joining Felda Lurah Bilut settlers in a 10,000-steps-a-day programme here.

On another matter, Liow said the Lynas monitoring committee led by him would come up with more proposals for the authorities to ensure safety.

“In fact, our committee came up with proposals to send the residue abroad and to control pollution by recycling the waste, which as we can see have been accepted by the authorities,” he said.

The watchdog committee was jointly formed by Pahang MCA, various Chinese associations and chamber of commerce last year.

Liow also said the parliamentary select committee to look into the rare earth project was a very good move that would allow more people to give their views without further politicising the issue.

“As the Health Minister, I would also like to give my assurance that I will be the first to stop this project if it is found to be harmful to the people’s health,” he said.