Cigarettes are one of the worst things on the planet for your health, as everyone knows, but they are also one of the most addictive. Quitting them is about as difficult as quitting heroin. So the electronic cigarette looked to be some kind of miracle for cigarette smokers. But a new study says that the e-cigs could be just as harmful as real cigs. OMG, what? Now I'm worried for all of my friends who have been sucking on these things like they're chia seed sticks!
The new study says that e-cigarettes contain carcinogenic chemicals that can make them as dangerous as tobacco cigarettes. E-cigs are even being banned in public places in France. Sheesh, and the French love their cigs so this must be serious.
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Right now, electronic cigarettes are still legal in public places in the United States. That might not last for long. Damn, what's a person to do who wants a cig?!
Anyway, I'm totally shocked by this because they really were marketed as the cigarette smoker's dream. You could get that smokers' fix without damaging your health. But you know what they say about things that seem to good to be true.
A French magazine ran tests on the cigarettes and found:
We detected a significant quantity of carcinogenic molecules in the vapour of these cigarettes which have thus far gone undetected. In three models out of ten the levels of the carcinogenic compound formaldehyde come close to those of a conventional cigarette. The highly toxic molecule acrolein was also detected in the vapours of e-cigarettes, sometimes at levels even higher than in traditional cigarettes.
There is some good news, though. A health expert in France said that the e-cigs were still a good alternative for heavy smokers. He said that it was at least better than smoking regular cigs.
But we all know the best thing to do is quit.
Personally, I think cigarettes should just be banned entirely. Why are we selling cancer and all kinds of other health problems in a box? I don't care that there are warnings about it -- lots of people who smoke grew up without those warnings (in fact, magazines from the '40s and '50s often marketed cigarettes as the cure for sore throats!). They got addicted and now they're stuck. It's like the same thing is happening with e-cigs. I just looked up an ad for an electronic cigarette that touts it as "the 100 percent healthy way to smoke"!
Of course, it wouldn't be right to legally get people addicted to cigarettes and then suddenly make it illegal and those people who desperately need a fix end up in jail for buying some black market smokes. But something needs to be done because the health care costs associated with cigarettes are outrageous -- not to mention that people are dying!
I guess it's back to the nicotine gum for everyone trying to quit.
Have you tried the electronic cigarettes? Have you tried to quit smoking?
Image via Paulio!/Flickr