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N.D. DOH: Spit tobacco not safe

BISMARCK (AP) -- Now that North Dakota workplaces are legally smoke-free environments, the state Department of Health is reminding people that spit tobacco is not a safe alternative.

Officials with the department's Tobacco Prevention and Control Program encourage chew-tobacco users to get help with quitting during Thursday's Great American Spit Out.

Program director Krista Headland said some people are turning to smokeless tobacco products such as dip and snuff to get their nicotine fix. She warns that those still contain addictive nicotine and harmful chemicals that increase the risk of cancers, heart disease and high blood pressure.

The health department estimates that about 8 percent of adults and nearly 14 percent of high school students use spit tobacco.

The Spit Out is part of the national Through with Chew Week.