ArabiaWeather - Sweden is preparing to achieve a remarkable achievement in becoming the first country in Europe completely smoke-free. This achievement is largely due to the popularity of “snus” , which is a pouch containing wet tobacco or nicotine that is placed under the upper lip.
Despite this achievement, some individuals are concerned that the tobacco industry is creating more of a "fictional story" than it is true.
The government points out that "tobacco pouches" , used by one in seven Swedes, have contributed to reducing the proportion of smokers in the country from 15% in 2005 to 5.2% last year, a record low in Europe.
A country is considered smoke-free when less than 5% of its population smokes daily. It is worth noting that wet tobacco pouches have been banned in the European Union since 1992, but Sweden reached an exceptional agreement when it joined the Union three years later.
Sweden is taking important steps towards achieving its goal of becoming the first completely smoke-free country in the world, according to the German magazine "Spiegel" .
In a similar context, Switzerland has taken strict measures in recent years to reduce tobacco consumption and smoking. These measures include increasing taxes on tobacco products and implementing comprehensive awareness campaigns about the health risks associated with smoking.
In light of the ongoing and sustained efforts, significant progress has been achieved in reducing smoking rates in Switzerland, making it a model worth emulating for other countries.
The recent steps taken by Sweden towards achieving the goal of being the first completely smoke-free country represent an important shift in public health policy, as this shift aims to improve the health of citizens and reduce smoking-related diseases. These measures are based on scientific research and studies that prove the harmful effects of smoking on health. the public.
The Swedish government expects that this step will achieve a significant improvement in the quality of life and reduce the health and economic burdens associated with smoking. With the tightening of procedures, the daily environment in Sweden is witnessing greater involvement in eliminating smoke containing nicotine, as cigarette sales decline, and smoking loses its “natural” status in society. .
However, challenges remain for Switzerland in its quest to achieve a smoke-free country, including tackling the illegal tobacco trade and providing healthy and effective alternatives to smokers seeking to kick the harmful habit.
For his part, Thorbjörn Thors, 67 years old, who has been relying on moist tobacco since his teens, expressed his concern about smoking due to the large number of rules, pointing out that “snus” has no smell, and that the effect of nicotine in it is much stronger than regular cigarettes.
Despite this, the decision to reduce taxes on wet tobacco was not liked by the President of the Swedish Cancer Society, Ulrika Arhide Kagström, as she expressed her surprise and disappointment, saying:
“It shows that they have bought into the fairy tale of the tobacco industry, that it is trying to find a new market for these products, promoting them as a means of harm reduction, but there is not enough research yet.”
“We know that moist tobacco and these nicotine products lead to changes in blood pressure and pose a risk to long-term cardiovascular health.” She expressed her fear that, just as with smoking, it may take years for the harmful effects of these products to become apparent.
A study conducted by the Norwegian Institute of Public Health last July indicates that “the risk of throat and pancreatic cancer is three times and two times greater among frequent snus users.” However, a 2017 study published by the International Journal of Cancer indicated no link between cancer and moist tobacco pouches.
Sweden points the way, and hopes that many countries will follow, as New Zealand seeks to achieve its goal of becoming smoke-free by the end of 2025 , while Britain aims for the year 2030, France the year 2032, and Canada the year 2035, and the European Union as a whole is moving towards ending the epidemic. Tobacco by 2040.
Despite the opportunities available to New Zealand to achieve success in this area, things appear to be more complicated for the Europeans, as the smoking rate remains at a high level, exceeding 20% of the population , almost double compared to the situation in Sweden, and this indicates that the challenge remains in Facing the complete transformation of smoking habits on the European continent.
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