Are electronic cigarettes safe?

The question on everyone's lips

Electronic Cigarette close up

This is a question Im pretty sure we all want to know the answer to, and surprise surprise…its not exactly straight forward.

What is safe, is to say that the full effects and risks posed by electronic cigarettes are simply unknown at this stage. However, there is a hell of a lot of information out there which says they are significantly better for you than traditional cigarettes.

Traditional tobacco burning cigarettes have over 5000 identified chemicals in them, but what I found particularly strange is that there is an estimated 100k chemicals which haven’t even been identified yet. This does make me think…..what the hell have they been doing all this time?. Maybe they just stopped at 5k and thought, you know what, we probably have enough here to confirm that smoking could definitely be bad for you!

The ECITA (Electronic Cigarette Industry Trade Association) wrote a great article which stated some of the main known chemicals found in traditional cigarettes. These included;

•Formaldehyde (used to preserve dead bodies)
•Arsenic (a common choice of poison in most murder mystery novels)
• Benzene (which is also in petrol, maybe a flavouring for those that just enjoy siphoning?)
•Hydrogen Cyanide (used by nazis to kill Jews in the death camps)
• Acetone (nail varnish remover……doesn’t actually seem that bad compared to the ones above, almost a pleasant addition)

As we all know, unfortunately cigarettes cause cancer and this is due to the carcinogens produced when the cigarette is lit.

So le’ts compare how many carcinogens are in traditional cigarettes against how many are in a typical electronic cigarette:


• Acetaldehyde

• Acrylonitrile

• 4-Aminobiphenyl

• o-Anisidine Hydrochloride

• Arsenic

• Benzene

• Beryllium

• 1,3-Butadiene

• Cadmium

• 1,1-Dimethylhydrazine

• Ethylene oxide

• Formaldehyde

• Furan

• Heterocyclic amines

• Hydrazine

• Isoprene

• Lead

• 2-Naphthylamine

• Nitromethane

• N-Nitrosodi-n-Butylamine

• N-Nitrosodiethanolamine

• N-Nitrosodiethylamine

• N-Nitrosodimethylamine

• N-Nitrosodi-n-Propylamine

• 4-(N-Nitrosomethylamino)-1-(3-Pyridyl)-1-Butanone

• N-Nitrosonornicotine

• N-Nitrosopiperidine

• N-Nitrosopyrrolidine

• N-Nitrososarcosine

• Polonium-210Citation needed

• Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons

• o-Toluidine

• Vinyl chlorid



• None

Now nobody can really say, that vaping is safe, because there will need to be a whole lot of further tests undertaken before the true effects can be assessed, however I do know which risk I want to take.

As described by my old friend Prof John Britton, chairman of theRoyal College of Physicians Tobacco Advisory Group said (ok so he’s not my friend really, but if we did meet, Im sure we would get on well) that e-cigarettes had the potential to save millions of lives.

He said: "The likelihood is that smoking electronic cigarettes is better than smoking tobacco".

"Electronic cigarettes have the potential to save lives. The concept of nicotine replacement is powerful and good."

Source: Deadline News


Written by Rob Patrick

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