Cigarettes and E-Cigarettes: A Clear Winner?

Cigarettes

It has long been known that smoking cigarettes is harmful to the health, but electronic cigarettes, or e-cigarettes, entered the market claiming to be a healthy alternative. A new review published by the Addiction Journal validates these claims, citing that switching can help current tobacco users reduce cigarette use or quit altogether.

This latest research, published Wednesday, confirms what many smokers and doctors thought to be true. The international research team, funded in part by the U.S. Institute of Health, examined 81 existing studies on the subject analyzing safety, chemicals and use.

Four ingredients make up the e-cigarette: nicotine, propylene glycol, vegetable glycerin, and flavoring. Tobacco is not included. With an e-cigarette, the smoker inhales vaporized liquid nicotine instead of the tobacco smoke that they would inhale with a traditional cigarette. That is the trade-off many believe is a healthy alternative. The process of smoking an e-cigarette is called “vaping.”

It is important to recognize that e-cigarettes are not yet an FDA-approved nicotine replacement therapy. The FDA has approved other methods to quit smoking, such as nicotine gum, patches, and lozenges. Many smokers, however, prefer the e-cigarette and the similarity it provides to the smoking experience.

This is also one of the disadvantages mentioned in the study as it has the potential to provide a gateway to smoking. However, there is little evidence to support that claim according to senior author of the review, Dr. Hayden McRobbie, of the Wolfson Institute of Preventive Medicine. He says, “Use of e-cigarettes by people who don’t smoke is very rare.”

Second-hand smoke still is a factor with e-cigarettes, although less of one. There are a few of the same toxins used in cigarettes, but at lower levels. Because of this, some researchers advocate taking a cautious approach until more studies are done.

Peter Hajek, an author of the paper and professor at Queen Mary University in London, is not one of them. According to Hajek it is important that regulators do not cripple the e-cigarette market and fail “to give smokers access to these safer products that could save their lives.” Hajek added that “If harsh regulations are put in place now, we will damage public health on a big scale.”

Researchers associated with the study suggest electronic cigarettes should have fewer regulations than tobacco, but oppositionists say it is prudent to wait until further evidence is gathered. The World Health Organization is considering a policy to restrict sales and use. Many medical organizations have joined the rally advocating for restrictions. To this, according to Hajek, all of the current evidence suggest that “e-cigarettes should be allowed to compete against conventional cigarettes in the marketplace.”

The trend in e-cigarette use is rising, proving to be more than just a fad. Glenn Cate of Knoxville, Tennessee, opened a store called Vintage Vapors in September 2013 and says there are now more than twenty e-cigarette shops in the city. “It shows this isn’t just a fad,” he says.

It appears current evidence supports that e-cigarettes are a healthy alternative to the cigarette, providing another option for smokers choosing to quit. As Dr. McRobbie said, “If there are any risks, these will be many times lower than the risks of smoking tobacco.”

By Stacey Wagner

Sources:

WBIR
BBC
WebMD
Science World Report

9 Responses to "Cigarettes and E-Cigarettes: A Clear Winner?"

  1. M.Patel   July 4, 2015 at 12:07 pm

    E-Cigarettes are also proving to be a preferred alternative to Nicotine Replacement Therapies: http://bit.ly/1CSe28b

    Reply
  2. maddison rebecca   August 14, 2014 at 9:47 pm

    E-Cigarettes are in great demands now days and one can surely adhere some very significant aspects apart from smoking in case of leading a healthy life. This is such a fine aspects for the various individual who are suppose to quit smoking as soon as possible.

    Reply
  3. castello2   August 4, 2014 at 5:30 pm

    Great write up! Spread the word!

    Reply
  4. wuz_uk   August 4, 2014 at 9:45 am

    trolls everywhere get a life and stop trying to kill people

    Reply
    • castello2   August 4, 2014 at 5:28 pm

      Who are you talking to?

      Reply
  5. nowchangeyourlife   August 3, 2014 at 12:36 am

    Having lost a lung to cancer through smoking I don’t give a damn about the profit the Tobacco Industry makes peddling their death dealing drugs. I smoked for 50 years and it nearly killed me. Economic recovery? What a moronic excuse for something causing proven suffering and costing millions in health bills. I smoke e-cigarettes and they have rescued me from the addiction.

    Reply
  6. flagger14   August 2, 2014 at 9:29 pm

    E-cigarettes should be banned because they re-normalize smoking. There are thousands if not tens of thousands of people, and hundreds of millions if not billions of dollars at stake in the American Tobacco Control Industry. We must stop e-cigarettes before they harm the economic recovery.

    Reply
    • Steve   August 4, 2014 at 5:46 am

      And prevent people from obtaining a safer alternative? Are you right in the head?? If you are of the view that people should just quit smoking then you are off your rocker! You can’t just quit smoking, yes maybe if you only smoked a couple a day for a year or something you could but for those of us who have smoked for half of their lives? I want a safer alternative, I am well aware of how dangerous smoking is and want safer alternatives for all but it is not as dangerous as breathing in toxic diesel and petrol fumes in a city center! Nor is it as dangerous as drinking alcohol.

      Blaming and banning smoking isn’t going to fix anything at all when the above more dangerous things still exist unrestricted.. This is scape-goating at its finest.

      Ban smoking everywhere? Yes I’ll agree to that when Alcohol consumption is banned everywhere and I can walk down a street without having to breathe in poisonous vehicle emissions.. It would take around 100 cigarettes to produce the level of deadly waste emitted from a car in just 2 minutes. I don’t even want to get started on what the airlines are pumping into the skys but I can tell you it would take all the smokers in the world a million years to produce as much damage.

      Reply
    • Phil   August 11, 2014 at 7:17 am

      You are joking with this post aren’t you flagger? Must be cos only ill informed and zealots still believe e-cigs re-normalise smoking. FFS they normalise NOT smoking

      Reply

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