The FDA’s Proposed Rules Prohibiting Menthol in Cigarettes and All Characterizing Flavors in Cigars Will Advance Public Health and Health EquityLaw & Policy InsightsMechanisms for Advancing Health EquityMechanisms for Advancing Public Health
Big Tobacco has historically targeted youth, the LGBTQ+ community, and African Americans with tailored marketing campaigns for menthol tobacco products. Menthol is a flavor additive that reduces the harshness and irritation of smoking, and enhances the addictive effects of nicotine in the brain. Similarly, it increases the chances that youth who begin smoking will habitually use these products. On April 28 the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) took an important step toward advancing health equity by announcing two proposed rules that will reduce tobacco-related health disparities.