harm reduction

All posts tagged harm reduction

University finds E-Cigs are 99% LESS harmful than smoking tobacco

Published 15/08/2013 by Bakers Vapers

University study shows E-Cigs are 99% less harmful than smoking tobacco
A study by Professor Igor Burstyn, Drexel University School of Public Health, shows that e-cigarette use poses no danger to users or to bystanders.

Professor Burstyn reviewed 9,000 observations (peer reviewed papers and ‘grey’ papers) of the chemicals found in e-cigarette use and found the levels of harmful chemicals to the user or the ‘passive vapour’ were ‘insignificant’.

As well as the obvious good news for our bodies this is also great news for the movement to allow e-cigarette use in pubs and clubs, as the primary objections raised have revolved around the harm to bystanders ‘passively vaping’. This theory has now been comprehensively debunked.

The study was funded by The Consumer Advocates for Smoke-free Alternatives (CASAA) Research Fund, a not-for-profit, donation funded body who saw the need for an in-depth study into the effects of the dangers of vaping.  CASAA President Elaine Keller picks up the story:

”Over the years, there have been a lot of small studies of e-cigarette liquid and vapor, but those studies were either ignored or misinterpreted. Those that showed even the slightest contamination were used for propaganda by those who object to e-cigarettes because they look like smoking. We realized that an expert review was needed to give an unbiased explanation of the available scientific evidence for our membership and policy makers. We reached out to our membership and they enthusiastically donated to make it possible.”

The paper suggested that even those undesirable contaminants found in e-cigarette vapour were of no health concern as they were found at levels CASAA described as ‘trivial’. Even Nicotine itself has been compared to caffeine in terms of the relatively low risk of ill effects on the body. In short you stand the same low risk of heart problems or strokes as drinking a nice cup of coffee.

For those of a scientific bent here is the link to the abstract of the CASAA paper

By pulling such large quantities of data together this study is a valuable tool into gauging the comparative safety of e-cigarette use versus regular cigarettes.

Finally CASSA Scientific Director Carl Phillips said ‘This is exactly the type of science that is needed to make good regulation and informed individual decisions’.

Thanks to James Dunmore of the Ashtrayblog.

Taxpayers and the Costs of Smoking Related Illnesses

Published 20/07/2013 by Bakers Vapers

What about all the money the NHS spends on treating smoking related illnesses?

Smoking related illnesses cost the NHS 2.65 BILLION a year!  Doesn’t that sound a lot?  I can’t even imagine what that amount would look like if it was stacked up in £20 notes.  Many taxpayers moan and groan about it and say that their taxes shouldn’t be used to pay for treatment for conditions of the person’s own making.

Lets put that shocking amount of money into perspective.  The UK Government rakes in ELEVEN BILLION in tobacco taxes every year!  That is a clear profit of 8.35 billion a year, which is a pretty astounding return on investment.  It doesn’t stop there though, because smokers die younger so they save on pensions and old age home fees.  You could almost argue that smokers save the taxpayer a fortune!  This is after smokers have paid their non-tobacco taxes as well.

What is Harm Reduction all about?

Published 20/07/2013 by Bakers Vapers

Vaping e-cigs reduces the harm that smoking exposes us to.
Its simple – if harm can’t be stopped entirely, substantially reducing it is the next best thing.

Every smoker knows there can be no doubt – smoking is bad for you and others around you. What if you can’t give up?

First you should seek advice from a Stop Smoking Helpline or your Doctor or Pharmacist. If that doesn’t work for you, switching to vaping substantially reduces harm. Lit tobacco has more than 4000 chemicals in it, many of them deadly poisonous. 

Nicotine itself, although addictive, isn’t really much worse for you than caffeine. It’s a mild stimulant much like coffee, and people use it because of the rather nice nicotine ‘lift’,  The bad thing about it is that it is addictive.  Nicotine itself is a relatively harmless thing to be addicted to.  The bad news is that if you light tobacco and smoke it, you get a lot of tar, and its the tar that will kill you and harm others around you.

If you play tennis with a tennis ball, there are risks of injury and harm.  But if you play tennis with a hand grenade the risks are very substantially increased. Vaping is about choosing the greatly reduced harm of playing with a tennis ball rather than a hand grenade.  Nobody claims it is entirely risk free, but it is a much safer way to get your nicotine hit, both for you and those around you.

Pharmaceutical grade nicotine is used in e-cig juices and is mixed with liquid used in food, like Glycerine, and flavouring. .Some juices also contain Propyl Glycol, which is used as a propellant in asthma inhalers and baby formula, among other things.

Regular cigarettes – or ‘analogues’ – contain about 500 chemicals, depending what agricultural pesticides, fertilisers and and other sprays the farmer uses.  When tobacco is lit, there are chemical chain reactions, which bring the total up to more than 4000.  That is a really scary thought!