Cigarette smoking and correlates among ultra-orthodox jewish males

Eran Kopel, Lital Keinan-Boker, Teena Enav, Rita Dichtiar, Tamy Shohat

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Introduction: Ultra-orthodox Jews compose a segregated group that struggles to preserve its centuries-old way of life by strictly adhering to the Jewish religious law in every aspect of life. Their health habits were infrequently studied to date. We sought to determine the smoking prevalence and to find its significant correlates in the ultra-orthodox Jewish population of Israel. Methods: The study was conducted in a cross-sectional design of men as smoking prevalence among ultra-religious women was found to be negligible in previous studies. Following a random ultra-orthodox households sampling and a phone survey, a total of 782 adult men were recruited. Results: The age-adjusted smoking prevalence was 12.8% (95% confidence interval [CI] = 10.3%-15.3%). The multivariate model demonstrated that being single (odds ratio [OR] = 5.83; 95% CI = 2.44-13.98), being of Israeli (OR = 2.10; 95% CI = 1.18-3.71), or North African/Asian origin (OR = 2.92; 95% CI = 1.55-5.53) was positively correlated with smoking while being a full-time Yeshiva student (OR = 0.51; 95% CI = 0.30-0.85) was negatively correlated with smoking. Conclusion: The Israeli ultra-orthodox Jewish men have very low prevalence of smoking when compared with the general population. The study contributes to a better understanding of habitual smoking correlates in ultra-religious minorities.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)562-566
Number of pages5
JournalNicotine and Tobacco Research
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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