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Citation Information

Type Journal Article - American Journal of Health Promotion
Title An Empirical Analysis of the Association Between Cigarette Smoking and Participation in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2016
URL http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/0890117116668481?journalCode=ahpa
Purpose: To examine the association between smoking and participation in Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) among low-income families. Design: A quasi-experimental design using pooled cross-sectional data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Consumer Expenditure Diary Survey. Setting: A national, representative sample of US households from 2005 through 2012. Participants: A total of 19 395 low-income households. Measures: US poverty thresholds were used, in conjunction with household income, to create a sample of families at 130% of the federal poverty level and below. Expenditures on cigarettes and self-reported enrollment in SNAP were used to measure smoking behavior and program participation, respectively. Analysis: Estimation of a maximum likelihood model was used to predict the probability of smoking given participation in SNAP. Results: The SNAP participation among low-income households was associated with a 30% (P < .01) increase in the likelihood of a household containing at least 1 smoker, relative to low-income non-SNAP households. Among smokers, SNAP households do not spend more money on tobacco products than non-SNAP households. Conclusion: Given the strong association found between SNAP participation and smoking, connecting program participants who smoke to effective smoking cessation programs could be an effective tool in reducing the prevalence of smoking among the low-income population. States have a unique opportunity to use SNAP-Education programs to integrate tobacco prevention and cessation into curriculum for direct client impact.

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