World No Tobacco Day

7 minute read
World No Tobacco Day

Every year on May 31, the World Health Organization (WHO) observes World No Tobacco Day. Their mission is to raise a concern about the consequences of tobacco use and how we can achieve a tobacco-free future. Every year, almost 6 million people die as a result of tobacco-related illnesses. This figure is expected to grow to more than 8 million by 2030. The Sustainable Development Agenda aims to reduce non – infectious disease deaths by one-third. Your average smoker drops around $4,000 on cigarettes annually. Imagine all of the other cool holidays you could enjoy with that money. So let’s use World No-Tobacco Day as a launching pad to a brighter and less smokey future!

The World No-Tobacco Day theme for 2021 is “Commit to Quit”

History of World No Tobacco Day

Courtesy: The Economic Times

World No-Tobacco Day is an annual World Health Organization awareness day that takes place on May 31. The movement seeks to raise concerns about the risks of cigarettes and their negative effects on health, as well as the exploitation of the nicotine industry, which targets young people in particular. It also helps to reduce the number of illnesses and deaths caused by tobacco use. 

World No Tobacco Day was founded in 1987 by World Health Organization member countries in response to the global tobacco crisis and the diseases and deaths caused by the epidemic. In 1987, the World Health Assembly passed Resolution WHA40.38, identifying April 7 as “World No-Smoking Day.” Next, Resolution WHA42.19 was passed in 1988, issuing May 31 as an annual observance of World No Tobacco Day.

Tobacco use is accounted for 6 million deaths per year, according to the World Health Organization. Tobacco use is the leading cause of respiratory illnesses such as Liver disease, tuberculosis, and other lung diseases. The WHO outlawed all cigarette advertising and marketing in 2008. China, as the world’s most populous nation, dominates the tobacco industry. More than 30% of the total cigarettes in the world were produced and consumed in China in 2014.

Check Out: World Cancer Day 2021

Why do we Celebrate World No-Tobacco Day?

Courtesy: WHO

Smoking is a risk that impacts not only smokers but also those around them and the environment. On World No Tobacco Day, the WHO raises concerns about all of these risks provides tools to help people stop smoking, and passes legislation to control the tobacco industry.

Despite the fact that smoking is one of the most preventable causes of illness and death in the world, over 6 million people die from tobacco use each year. It is also estimated that 600,000 people die each year as a result of second-hand smoke. Around the same time, statistics indicate that low and middle-income families account for 80% of these deaths. 

Courtesy: WHO

Some World No-Tobacco Day Themes of previous years are

  • 2017 – Tobacco: a threat to development.
  • 2018 – Tobacco and heart disease.
  • 2019 – Tobacco and lung health.
  • 2020 – Tobacco Exposed: The Secret’s Out.
  • 2021 – Commit to Quit

The Most Scary Facts about Smoking & Using Tobacco!

Courtesy: TED-Ed

Today we know a lot about the dangers of smoking thanks to decades years of research about tobacco addiction. Here we’ve listed some of the major statistics about the effects of smoking and using tobacco. Read them and then judge for yourself.

  • The life expectancy of a smoker is usually 10 years lesser than a non-smoker.
  • Nearly 9 out 10 smokers start before turning 18, and all start smoking by the age of 26.
  • Cigarette contains more than 7,000 chemical, 70 of which are known to cause cancer.
  • Tobacco is the leading cause of preventable death in the world.
  • Smokers usually inhale about 1 milligram (mg) of nicotine in a single cigarette.
  • For every person that dies from smoke-related diseases, 20 more people suffer from smoke-related illness

These numbers are even more scary!! 

  • 8 million – the number of people who died from smoking in 2017.
  • 15% – the percentage of global deaths that are attributed to smoking.
  • 70 – the age over which more than half of the deaths occur due to smoking.
  • 1-in-5 – the number of adults in the world who smoke tobacco.
  • 80% – the percentage of the world’s 1.3 billion tobacco users who live in low- and middle-income countries.
  • 7 million – the number of deaths among the 1.3 billion tobacco users that occurred due to direct smoking.
  • 1.2 million – the number of deaths among the 1.3 billion tobacco users that occurred due to secondhand smoking.

How to Quit Smoking?

Courtesy: AsapSCIENCE

Tobacco cravings can wear you down when you’re trying to quit. Use these tips to reduce and resist cravings. Here are 5 ways to help you resist the urge to smoke or use tobacco when a tobacco craving strikes.

Stay Away from Triggers

Tobacco cravings are more likely to be strongest in circumstances where you smoked or chewed tobacco the most, such as at parties or pubs, or when depressed or sipping coffee. Identify the trigger conditions and make a strategy to stop or get past them without using nicotine.

Delay your Cravings

If you’re about to surrender to your nicotine craving, remind yourself that you must first wait 10 minutes — and then do something to distract yourself during that time. Try heading to a public, no-smoking area. These easy tricks can be sufficient to suppress your tobacco craving.

Chew on it

To overcome a nicotine craving, give your mouth something to do. Chew sugarless gum or hard candy, or eat raw carrots, celery, almonds, or sunflower seeds — something crunchy and satisfying.

Don’t have ‘just one’

To satisfy a nicotine craving, you might be tempted to smoke only one cigarette. But don’t kid yourself into thinking you should stop there. Using one usually leads to another, and you can end up using tobacco again.

Remind yourself of the benefits

Write down or say out loud the reasons you want to stop smoking and resist tobacco cravings. These might include:

  • Feeling better
  • Getting healthier
  • Sparing your loved ones from secondhand smoke
  • Saving money

How To Spread Awareness this World No Tobacco Day?

Here are some of the best ways to spread awareness about the harmful impact of tobacco this World No Tobacco Day:

Educate the youth

The easiest way to stop smoking is to never start in the first place. So, continue to convince the young people around you to refrain from the addiction entirely. Inform your friends and family about the harm of consuming tobacco and seek their help in spreading more awareness about the same.

Lobby for sticker laws

People are discouraged from smoking as a result of warning labels on tobacco packages. Petition in favor of this legislation such that the practice continues. Additionally, minimum pricing rules may benefit from additional support. These rules ban the labels and colors of cigarette products, making them more difficult to market.

Count the number of cigarettes you smoke

Who would judge you if you aren’t about to give up tobacco yourself? It’s difficult. However, you should start setting the foundation for your escape by keeping track of how many cigarettes you smoke every day. Remember, baby steps!


A lot more than nicotine is in cigarettes. There are thousands of chemicals in cigarette smoke. Some of them are also in wood varnish, the insect poison DDT, arsenic, nail polish remover, and rat poison. They damage your heart and lungs. They also make it harder for you to taste and smell things and fight infections.

But the thought of giving up cigarettes may still bring a lot of questions to mind. Here are answers to some common ones.

Why Is It So Hard to Quit?

Many people who kicked the habit say it was the hardest thing they ever did. Do you feel hooked on cigarettes? You’re probably addicted to nicotine. This chemical is in all tobacco products. It temporarily makes you feel calm and satisfied. At the same time, you feel more alert and focused. The more you smoke, the more nicotine you need to feel good. Soon, you don’t feel “normal” without it.

What Are the Risks of Smoking?

There are a lot of them. Smoking is life-threatening because it makes you much more likely to get many diseases, like heart disease and cancers of the lungs, stomach, pancreas, kidney, colon, rectum, bladder, esophagus, mouth, throat, and larynx. It also makes you more likely to get acute myeloid leukemia (a blood cancer) and pneumonia.

What’s the First Step to Quitting?

You should set a quit date — the day when you will quit smoking and start to break free of your tobacco addiction. Then, consider visiting your doctor before the quit date. They can give you practical advice and let you know if any tobacco replacement or medication would help.

What if I’ve Tried Before?

It’s still possible. Most people try to quit smoking at least two or three times before they are successful. Think about your past attempts to quit. What worked? What didn’t? What might you do differently this time?

Millions of people have quit smoking for good and if you are struggling with a tobacco addiction or anyone you know is facing this issue, take the initiative and help in any way possible you can. And each time you resist a tobacco craving, you’re one step closer to being tobacco-free—this World No Tobacco day pledge to quit and help others to quit the consumption of tobacco. Follow Leverage Edu for educational content and fun quizzes!

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