According to the JAMA report from the University of Washington's Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation in the US, there are simply more people to take up the habit. The Earth's population has more than doubled in the last 50 years to seven billion, so there are more people.
Figures show several large countries, including Bangladesh, China and Russia, have seen increasing numbers of inhabitants take up smoking in recent years. Some of the highest smoking rates are now emerging in the developing world.
In terms of ill health, Greece, Ireland, Italy and Japan as well as China, Kuwait, the Philippines, Russia, Switzerland and Uruguay will pay the greatest price with their high consumption.
Congratulations to Canada, Iceland, Norway and Mexico, who have been more successful than most at getting inhabitants to either quit or never take up smoking.
From the Andes, tobacco spread north and then on to the colonies, islands and continents beyond. With steadily increasing demand, tobacco plants were transported for cultivation to countries all over the world. Why?
The history of tobacco is more than just a history of its cultivation for chewing, sniffing, or smoking. It represents a journey through changing tastes and fashions, variations in cultural status and different stages of political and trading importance. The same today would be called peer group pressure, government policies and big business. Maybe we could use the bold heading of money which includes taxes, profit and greed.
I've been a passive smoker for my adult life. I'm not complaining. I knew about my husband's habits before I married. Not that I like the fumes staining my walls and coating all my possessions, but I believe you have to accept the good with the bad. I wrote about my present husband's attempt to reduce his habit yesterday. It's hard. The most important thing with an addiction is the desire to stop. Lacking that, the endeavor will not be entirely successful.