1.1. billion people smoked in 2019. But the U.S. had fewer smokers.

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Although smoking has decreased in the United States since the 1990s, new research shows there was a global record high of 1.1 billion people who smoked in 2019. 

Published on Thursday, the number of smokers was directly tied to population growth, a new peer-reviewed study published in the medical journal The Lancet claims.

The study stated that in the last 30 years, smoking tobacco accounted for over 200 million deaths. The annual economic costs exceeded $1 trillion. 

“I’m not surprised at all. Tobacco use smoking is still the No. 1 preventable cause of death worldwide,” Dr. Albert Rizzo, the chief medical officer for the American Lung Association, told USA TODAY.

Ten countries made up two-thirds of the global tobacco smoking population: China, India, Indonesia, the U.S., Russia, Bangladesh, Japan, Turkey, Vietnam and the Philippines.

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