Religious involvement and cigarette smoking among Iranian university students.Int J Psychiatry Med. 2009; 39(2):189-98.IJ
To find out the prevalence of cigarette smoking in a group of Iranian Muslim students and also to find out if there is a relationship between religious practices and cigarette smoking.
In this cross-sectional study, 950 university students in Kerman, Iran were asked to fill out a self-administered questionnaire consisting of questions on demographic data, cigarette smoking, and religious practices. It was explained that the study was anonymous and voluntary, and confidentiality was assured.
All 833 subjects who participated in the study were Muslims, 54.1% of whom were female and 89.3% were single. Approximately 40% of male students and 5.8% of the female ones were smokers. Based on bivariate analysis, some differences were noted in the prevalence of smoking according to gender, marital status, income, average university scores, close friend's smoking, parental smoking, reading the Quran, saying prayers, mosque attendance, and fasting. Using multivariate analysis, male gender, higher income, lower average exam scores, and close friend's smoking being associated with the likelihood to smoke cigarettes. The odds ratio for cigarette smoking in the upper tertile compared with those in the lower tertile of religious activity was 0.53 (CI 95% 0.33-0.84).
Religious activities may have a protective role against cigarette smoking among Muslim college students in the country.