Introduction: The purpose of this longitudinal study was to examine the relationship between two major health problems, smoking and obesity, and to determine to what extent trajectories of cigarette smoking from early adolescence to young adulthood are related to obesity in the mid-30s. Methods: Participants (N = 806) were interviewed using a structured questionnaire at 6 points in time over a period of 23 years. Semiparametric group-based modeling and logistic regression analyses were used to analyze the data. The main outcome measure was obesity, assessed by body mass index in the mid-30s. Results: Five distinct trajectories of tobacco use were identified (N = 806): heavy/continuous smokers, late starters, quitters/decreasers, occasional smokers, and nonsmokers. Compared with nonsmokers, heavy/continuous smokers or late starters had a significantly lower likelihood of obesity. Also, compared with nonsmokers or occasional smokers, heavy/continuous smokers or late starters had a significantly lower likelihood of being overweight or obese. Discussion: Smoking cessation programs should focus on weight control methods, such as physical exercise and learning healthy habits. In addition, weight control programs should incorporate smoking cessation efforts as integral components.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health