Smoking behavior among US Latinos: an emerging challenge for public health

Am J Public Health. 1985 Feb;75(2):169-72. doi: 10.2105/ajph.75.2.169.


In this paper we review evidence on smoking and lung cancer among Latinos, including findings from several unpublished studies and technical reports. Recent surveys of smoking behavior in California, Texas, and New Mexico indicate a notable sex difference in smoking among Latinos, with Latino males smoking at least as frequently as White males, while Latino females report smoking rates considerably lower than White females. Our analysis of the 1979 and 1980 National Health Interview Surveys corroborates this finding and also indicates that this pattern holds true for subgroups of the Latino population, including country of origin. Taken together, these findings suggest that among Latino males rates of lung cancer and other cigarette-linked diseases may increase in the near future.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Aged
  • California
  • Ethnic Groups
  • Female
  • Health Surveys
  • Hispanic Americans*
  • Humans
  • Hypertension / epidemiology
  • Lung Neoplasms / epidemiology
  • Lung Neoplasms / etiology
  • Male
  • Mexico / ethnology
  • Middle Aged
  • Public Health
  • Sex Factors
  • Smoking*