Smokeless tobacco is responsible for around 200,000 deaths from coronary heart disease per year
Around 2 million people die every year from tobacco-induced heart disease, according to a new brief.
It equates to one in five of all deaths from heart disease, warned the brief released on Tuesday ahead of World No Tobacco Day on September 29.
World Health Organisation, World Heart Federation and University of Newcastle Australia jointly released the report.
They urged all to quit tobacco use and avoid a heart attack as just a few cigarettes a day, occasional smoking or exposure to second-hand smoking increase the risk of heart disease.
Smokeless tobacco is responsible for around 200,000 deaths from coronary heart disease per year. E-cigarettes also raise blood pressure, increasing the risk of cardiovascular disease, the brief also showed.
Smokers are more likely to experience an acute cardiovascular event at a younger age than non-smokers are. And if tobacco users take immediate action and quit, their risk of heart disease will decrease by 50% after one year of not smoking, they also said.
"Given the current level of evidence on tobacco and cardiovascular health and the health benefits of quitting smoking, failing to offer cessation services to patients with heart disease could be considered clinical malpractice or negligence," said Dr Eduardo Bianco, chair of the World Heart Federation Tobacco Expert Group.
A recent WHO survey found that 67% Covid-19 deaths in Italy had high blood pressure, and in Spain, 43% of people who developed Covid-19 were living with heart disease.
"Governments have a responsibility to protect the health of their people and help reverse the tobacco epidemic. Making our communities smoke-free reduces the number of tobacco-related hospital admissions, which is more important than ever in the context of the current pandemic," said Dr Vinayak Prasad, Unit Lead of the WHO No Tobacco Unit.
He urged the governments to help tobacco users quit by increasing tax on tobacco products, enforcing bans on tobacco advertising and offering services to help people give up tobacco.