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What do you think about electronic cigarettes?

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Hi Mark,

These days, electronic cigarettes have become very popular, especially among young people. The new term is 'vaping' and there are lots of liquid nicotine products infused with various flavours like candy, coffee, fruits, etc. that they 'vape'.

What are your thoughts on these products? Do these have any health implications? Any impact on lungs, heart, brain, etc.?

Thanks,

Jay

This question was submitted by 'Jay'

mark tyrrell

Mark says...

Hi Jay,

As you know, e-cigarettes were developed several years ago to provide tobacco users a smoke-free source of nicotine. The devices heat up a liquid that a user inhales or 'vapes'. Because e-cigarettes burn nothing, they release no smoke.

I've heard that some people who have never smoked have become hooked on electronic cigarettes, which is a bit ironic. Of course, their original purpose was to help people quit self-harming through tobacco cigarettes. But are they safe?

Electronic cigarettes have been marketed as less dangerous than regular cigarettes, but some recent research has shown they still deliver many toxic chemicals, including cancer-causing carcinogens, into the lungs. And they may even make bacterial infections resistant to antibodies, according to one study.

Professor Stanton Glantz, director of the Center for Tobacco Control Research and Education at the University of California, San Francisco, said that there's no question that one puff on an e-cigarette is less toxic than a puff on a normal one, but the toxins from the vapours are really bad, it seems. Glantz and his team studied emerging data on just what is being inhaled through the vapours and found e-cigarettes deliver high levels of nanoparticles, which can trigger inflammation and have been linked to asthma, stroke, heart disease, and diabetes.

So, along with the cancer risk, I have to say I'm yet to be convinced, Jay, that e-cigarettes are the way to go, especially as I have seen so many heavy smokers of many years quit comfortably and easily without the need of crutches and stop gaps such as nicotine gum or e-cigarettes.

Thanks for writing in and all the best,

Mark

watch icon Published by Mark Tyrrell - October 8th, 2014 in

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