Quitting smoking is by far the best thing you can do for your health. Fact. That’s because according to national statistics, 50 per cent of all smokers’ health will be affected because of their addiction and it is estimated that 96,000 smokers in the UK die every year of diseases related to their smoking addiction.
Smoking is also considered one of the most difficult addictions to overcome… And this is why vaping – electronic cigarettes – has literally taken the market by storm.
This alternative to smoking has been marketed as being safer and healthier than cigarette smoking. In fact, in 2015 Public Health England urged smokers to switch to vaping, citing a 2014 study led by David Nutt at Imperial College, which found e-cigarettes to be 95 per cent safer than tobacco.
Where there is smoke…
Now, this shouldn’t come as a surprise… and if you are a smoker and you switched from smoking cigarettes to vaping, you might have known this all along but kept that little voice of reason quiet in the back of your head.
However, recent research has questioned the findings of Nutt’s study.
That’s because a Greek study earlier this year suggests that 30 minutes of vaping is as bad for your heart as a 5 minute puff on an ordinary cigarette.
Before I continue, let’s take a step back…
When e-cigarettes became popular back in 2012, tobacco conglomerates rushed to enter the £4 billion e-cigarette market as sales from traditional cigarettes began to flag. And as expected, these unscrupulous companies invested in a significant amount of research promoting “vaping” as a safe alternative.
Now where have you seen this before?
Look at cigarette ads from the 40s, 50s and 60s, and you’ll see a very similar message about the “safety” of smoking. Some of these ads even speak about the “health benefits” of smoking… Backed by so-called throat specialists!
“Not one single case of throat irritation due to smoking”, was the headline of one particular ad in a magazine. These “findings” were based on world-renowned throat specialists who conducted “a total of 2,470 weekly examinations of the throats of men and women who smoked Camels – and only Camels – for 30 days”.
Of course, even if you are a diehard smoker today, you know that these claims are all bogus… and you also know that these “experts” were all paid by Big Tobacco to make those “health claims”.
Step into 2016 and you’ll see thousands of ex-smokers (2.8 million in the UK to be exact) vaping away, thinking that they are protecting themselves from the hundreds of deadly chemicals found in cigarette tobacco without having to give up on their nicotine addiction.
Not so fast because nothing has really changed… especially when it comes to the lies you have been told.
It turns out that, according The Times newspaper, at least a dozen scientific papers published in leading academic journals since 2013 have been written by employees of tobacco-owned e-cigarette companies or scientists sponsored by them…
In addition, at least seven academics central to the e-cigarettes debate have accepted funding from the tobacco industry. Or they acted as consultants to e-cigarette manufacturers. Or they received hospitality and other incentives from tobacco companies.
And that includes those involved in the 2014 Nutt study.
So the next time you step out on the pavement to puff away on your e-cigarette think about this:
- The UK government receives £9.5bn a year in revenue from tobacco tax
- The annual retail value of the UK cigarette market is £15.5bn
- The annual retail market of e-cigarettes in the UK is estimated to be around £550 million
We’re talking about BIG MONEY here… and sadly the price tag on this smoking cash cow is by far more appealing to Big Tobacco and the UK government than their concern for your health is… So, don’t be surprised if the so-called safety and health benefits of e-cigarettes don’t hold up to the promises made.
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Tobacco giants fund vaping studies, published online 02.10.16, thetimes.co.uk