The lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community continues to be disproportionately impacted by smoking. The LGBT community is among the populations most severely impacted by tobacco use. The most recent study suggests the LGBT community smokes at a rate almost 50% to 200% higher than the general population. This is in part due to Tobacco Companies that aggressively advertise to the LGBT Community. The social stress of living in a society that can be hostile to LGBT people, also plays a factor in higher smoking rates, particularly among LGBT youth.
Despite widespread evidence of smoking’s harms to health, rising costs of tobacco products, and the visibility of public health interventions aimed at tobacco users, tobacco use remains high among lesbian women, gay men, bisexual people and transgender people (LGBT ) internationally, with US data showing at least double the smoking rates of the general population. [1-5] Although anecdotal evidence suggests similar rates internationally, no formal smoking data exist for intersex people, representing an important area for research. There are many reasons why LGBT people may begin or continue smoking. Commonly cited reasons include minority stress due to the effects of discrimination, harassment, and violence; lack of social support; and fear of weight gain.