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5 per cent of adults in Scotland use e-cigarettes

Published: 22 Sep 2015 09:35

A National Statistics Publication for Scotland.

Prevalence is higher among current and ex-smokers, with 15 per cent of current cigarette smokers and 7 per cent of ex-smokers using e-cigarettes, compared to only 1 per cent of people who have never smoked cigarettes regularly.

Scotland's Chief Statistician today released The Scottish Health Survey 2014, providing information on the health and factors relating to health of adults and children in Scotland.

Attempts to quit smoking
Two-thirds (67%) of smokers said they would like to quit smoking. Just under two-thirds (64 per cent) of recent ex-smokers and current smokers who had attempted to quit said they used a nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) product or e-cigarettes in the previous three months. The most common items used as part of a recent quit attempt were nicotine patches (36 per cent) and e-cigarettes (32 per cent).

Cardiovascular Disease (CVD) and Diabetes
In 2014, 16 per cent of adults stated that they had ever been diagnosed with any Cardiovascular Disease (CVD) condition by a doctor.

Doctor-diagnosed diabetes prevalence was 6 per cent for adults (8 per cent for men and 5 per cent for women) in 2014. Prevalence among men was significantly higher in 2014 (8 per cent) than in 2003 (4 per cent).

Perceived Impact of the Commonwealth Games
6 per cent of adults said they were now more interested in sport and physical activity as a result of Glasgow hosting the Commonwealth Games in 2014, while 4 per cent said that they were thinking of doing more sport or physical activity.

Inequalities in Health Risks
Adherence to the physical activity guideline for adults declined steadily with increasing area deprivation. There was no clear association for children.

The proportion of children in the most deprived areas that had participated in sport in the past week was at least 10 percentage points lower in most years than the proportion in the least deprived areas. This inequality in sport participation has widened over time.

In most years, the prevalence of obesity was at least 10 percentage points higher for adults in the most deprived quintile than in the least.

Other key findings from the report show:

• In 2014, 74 per cent of adults identified their health as 'good' or 'very good'; 8 per cent said it was 'bad' or 'very bad'. Most (95 per cent) children were reported to have 'good' or 'very good' health, and just 1 per cent 'bad' or 'very bad'.

• Two thirds (65 per cent) of adults are overweight, including 28 per cent who are obese. Prevalence of overweight and obesity has not changed significantly since 2008.

• Just under a third (31 per cent) of children in 2014 were at risk of overweight, including 17 per cent at risk of obesity.

• The prevalence of drinking outwith the government guidelines for weekly and / or daily drinking declined significantly from 2003 to 2014 both for men (from 53% to 46%) and women (from 42% to 36%).

• Adults consumed an average of 3.1 portions of fruit and vegetables a day in 2014, consisting of 1.5 portions of fruit, 1.4 portions of vegetables and 0.3 portions of fruit juice. Children consumed an average of 2.8 portions per day, comprising 1.5 portions of fruit, 0.9 of vegetables, and 0.4 of fruit juice.

• The proportion of adults who were physically active at the recommended level (150 minutes of moderate or 75 minutes of vigorous activity per week) has not changed significantly in the last three years (63 per cent in 2014).

• Just over three-quarters (76 per cent) of children met the guideline of 60 minutes or more physical activity a day, an increase from 71 per cent in 2008 and 2009.

• The reported lifetime prevalence of doctor-diagnosed asthma was 17 per cent for adults, an increase from 13 per cent in 2003. Prevalence for children aged 0-15 was 11 per cent, a decrease from 16 per cent in 2003.

• In 2014, 4 per cent of adults had doctor-diagnosed Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD). This figure has not changed significantly since 2008.

The figures released today were produced in accordance with professional standards set out in the Code of Practice for Official Statistics.


A short summary report and the full statistical publication are available at

Key findings from the 2014 are presented together with trends, some of which extend back nearly two decades.

Official statistics are produced in accordance with professional standards. More information on the standards of official statistics in Scotland can be accessed at: