Most smokers think about kicking the butt on Mondays
Washington: A new study found that Mondays are when smokers are most likely to think about kicking their habit.
Researchers from San Diego State University, the Santa Fe Institute, The Monday Campaigns and the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health monitored global Google search query logs from 2008 to 2012 in English, French, Chinese, Portuguese, Russian, and Spanish for searches related to quitting, such as "help quit smoking," to examine weekly patterns in smoking cessation contemplations for the first time.
The study found that people search about quitting smoking more often early in the week, with the highest query volumes on Mondays, using a daily measure representing the proportion of quit smoking searches to all searches.
This pattern was consistent across all six languages, suggesting a global predisposition to thinking about quitting smoking early in the week, particularly on Mondays.
English searches, for example, showed Monday query volumes were 11 percent greater than on Wednesdays, 67 percent greater than on Fridays, and 145 percent greater than on Saturdays.
In total for all six languages, Monday query volumes were 25 percent higher than the combined mean number of searches for Tuesday through Sunday.
According to the study's lead author, San Diego State University's John W. Ayers the team's findings may upend the way health officials and clinicians approach smoking cessation.
"Popular belief has been that the decision to quit smoking is unpredictable or even chaotic," Ayers said.
"By taking a bird's-eye view of Google searches, however, we find anything but chaos. Instead, Google search data reveal interest in quitting is part of a larger collective pattern of behavior dependent on the day of the week," he said.
The study is published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, Internal Medicine.