"To cease smoking is the easiest thing I ever did, I ought to know because I've done it a thousand times", Mark Twain.
Tobacco consumption is the single largest avoidable health risk in the European Union. It is the most significant cause of premature death in the EU, responsible for nearly 700,000 deaths every year. Around 50% of smokers die prematurely (on average 14 years earlier).
In addition, smokers have more life years in poor health. Many forms of cancer, cardiovascular and respiratory diseases are linked to tobacco use, which causes more problems than alcohol, drugs, high blood pressure, excess weight or high cholesterol.
Despite considerable progress made in recent years, the number of smokers in the EU is still high – 26% of the overall population and 25% of young Europeans aged 15-24 smoke.