When Are Smokers Not Smokers?

A man gestures to not tell on him while caught smoking a joint.The argument is similar to problem drinkers who think one drink won’t hurt them.

Only this denial has to do with smoking.

A survey released by the University of California San Diego (UCSD) reported the following.

  • A large number of participants who said they use cigarettes
  • Also reported they do not consider themselves smokers

Smokers who are not smokers?

Smokers’ Denial

Published online in Tobacco Control, an international peer review journal, the survey offered some interesting results, as illustrated in the infographic below.


Smoker Survey-blog


Funny Statistics

The survey has researchers pausing.

  • Just how many “non-smokers” are really non-smokers?
  • Could there be many more smokers than previously thought?

I am not much of a gambler, but this is one bet I would view as a sure thing.

It’s like weighing yourself a year ago – before you gained 50 pounds — and swearing you are still a size 8.

What you don’t know (or won’t admit), can’t hurt you. Right?

BigStock Photo Credit


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Notice of Disclaimer –Cathy Miller is not an attorney or health care provider and cannot provide legal or health care advice. The information provided is for your general background only, and is not intended to constitute legal or health care advice as to your specific circumstances. We recommend you review legislation with legal counsel and visit your physician for health care issues.



  1. says

    Almost every life insurance policy asks a question about tobacco use. Rates for smokers are far lower for non-smokers than smokers. I have seen more people hesitate over this one question than any other.

    I explain the consequences of not answering the question truthfully, but still wait for the first person to change their answer and pay 40% or more for the policy.
    Kevin H @ Growing Family Benefits´s last blog post ..Purchasing Life Insurance on Children’s FatherMy Profile

    • Cathy Miller says

      Very true, Kevin, but from this survey it sounds like at least some of those truly don’t view themselves as smokers.

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