Vaping VS Smoking;
Is vaping really a healthier alternative to smoking?
The answer to this question in a nutshell is, yes, it is undeniably a healthier alternative to smoking. In this blog, we will explore the difference in chemicals, the cost between vaping and smoking, as well as research done by respected health experts to support the above claim.
What do the experts say?
An article endorsed by health experts has stated that “Long-term vaping [is] ‘far safer than smoking’.”
A long-term study recently carried out by a number of researchers from various institutions, including University College London, the Roswell Park Cancer Institute and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, have found significantly lower levels of toxic chemicals and cancer-causing substances (carcinogens) in the samples [breath, saliva and urine] of those of former smokers who had been using e-cigarettes or nicotine replacement therapy (NRT), compared to current smokers. This study, involving 181 smokers or ex-smokers, “provides evidence that e-cigarettes and NRT can reduce harm to smokers by reducing exposure to toxic chemicals. The evidence would also seem to support Public Health England’s 2015 report that “E-cigarettes are 95% less harmful than tobacco”.”
Chemicals associated with smoking;
The combustion of tobacco in the process of smoking contains thousands of different chemicals, 70+ relating to cancer, heart and lung disease. Chemicals can get into cigarettes in different ways. Some are found naturally in the tobacco plant, some are absorbed by the plant from the soil, air or fertilisers, and some are formed when tobacco leaves are processed or are added by the tobacco industry. Others form when a cigarette burns, so are only present in the smoke coming off a cigarette. A few chemicals that are considered carcinogens are;
- Hydrogen Cyanide
- Carbon Monoxide
- Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons
This cocktail of chemicals is why there is no safe way to use tobacco.
Chemicals associated with vaping;
The primary process of vaping removes the need to combust anything, removing a handful of the harmful chemicals listed above. Studies on the vapour produced from vaping suggest there is a significant difference between the number of carcinogens found compared to cigarette smoke. Here are a few chemicals found in vaping;
- Nicotine – The addictive chemical, gives the user the desire to want more. When people say they’re addicted to smoking, they’re addicted to nicotine.
- Propylene Glycol
- Vegetable Glycerin
Any other chemicals found are mostly related to the process of flavouring. Many of which are found to be food grade and typically safe to consume.
Weighing up the cost;
Due to the initial cost of purchasing hardware for vaping, many people think that vaping is more costly than cigarettes. Although an initial lump sum is forked out when purchasing a kit, the money saved in the medium-long-run is a tasteful reward.
Research by Tobacco Control (Control, 2017) found that throughout a single day the average cigarette intake is around 5. Below is a rough comparison structure of the daily, monthly and annual spendings of a smoker vs vaper.
- Smoking – A pack of 20 cigarettes costs around $13 [£10] in New York. We can assume that give or take, the average smoker will purchase five packs a week ($65) [£50] adding up to around $260 [£200] a month or $3120 [£2420] a year (and pack-a-day smoker will spend even more – $4368 [£3385], not counting the health-related costs and increased insurance prices).
- Vaping – To purchase an e-cigarette starter kit that will last at least a year, you would have to spend around $50 [£40], this is the most expensive part of vaping. Once you’ve purchased a vape starter kit, you can expect to spend around $15 [£12] per week for a bottle of juice (if you vape a lot), $60 [£45] a month or $720 [£560] a year.
From the above calculations, you can see that vaping is substantially cheaper than smoking. Vaping allows more control for the user, enabling you the freedom over your puff intake, essentially determining the amount saved/spent on e-liquid.
“According to a report sponsored by UK’s Department of Health and published by Public Health England – a prestigious group of highly qualified scientists, researchers, and public health professionals – electronic cigarettes are at least 95 percent safer than tobacco cigarettes. The report also recognizes their potential as a viable approach to quitting smoking.”
With research that has come to light over the passed 10 years, it has become more and more apparent that vaping is in fact a lot healthier than smoking, eliminating at least 95% of the harmful chemicals found in cigarettes. One now understands the “process” of smoking i.e the combustion of tobacco, the inhalation of smoke (directly & secondhand) etc. and the negative effects it has on ones health. Eliminating tobacco, combustion and the inhalation of smoke (directly and secondhand) greatly reduces the chances of developing smoking related diseases.
On the contrary, vaping eradicates these three main factors, allowing for safer and healthier all-round vape.
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