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8 Gruesome Facts About Cigarettes

Thursday, 9 February 2017

cigarette-smoking-facts

New evidence shows that vaping can help you quit smoking – so long as you don’t succumb to the odd cheeky cigarette. We’ve compiled some foul facts to ensure you stay strong – and keep off the fags!

Science loves vaping! Well, perhaps that’s a slight exaggeration but a recent study conducted by scientists at University College London looking into the long-term effects of smoking and vaping found that after six months, people who switched from real cigarettes to e-cigarettes had far fewer toxins and cancer-causing substances in their bodies.

Funded by Cancer Research UK, the study looked at 181 individuals who used e-cigarettes and NRT products over six months. The study’s lead author, Dr Lion Shahab, told The Independent: “Our study adds to existing evidence showing that e-cigarettes and NRT are far safer than smoking, and suggests that there is a very low risk associated with their long-term us. We've shown that the levels of toxic chemicals in the body from e-cigarettes are considerably lower than suggested in previous studies using simulated experiments. This means some doubts about the safety of e-cigarettes may be wrong.”

This will come as a relief to some vapers who may have been worried by previous studies suggesting that vaping is as harmful as smoking – and will be vindication for those vapers who were pretty confident that those damning studies were a load of rubbish! However, the report also concluded that, in order to reap the health benefits of vaping over smoking, you have to give up smoking completely! The study found the same amount of the highly carcinogenic chemical NNAL present in smokers and those who smoke and vape. Even a few cheeky cigarettes will undo your good work – so if you need some inspiration to stay away from the evil ciggies, remember these gruesome facts about fags…

  1. They contain rat poison. Among the disgusting cocktail of carcinogenic products contained in cigarettes, you’ll find arsenic and hydrogen cyanide – both of which are used to kill rats. Oh, and formaldehyde, used to preserve corpses. 

  2. You’re killing your friends and family. Despite the fairly dramatic reduction in British smokers over the last few years, over 100,000 people die from passive smoking-related diseases every year – in the UK alone. Children are particularly at risk, as their lungs are not fully formed. Passive smoking puts them at higher risk of cot death, lung cancer, asthma and pneumonia. 

  3. You’re smoking wee. Yup, you read that right. Urea – the main component in urine – is added to cigarettes to ‘enhance the flavour.’ Yuck!

  4. You’re smoking whale spew (well, sometimes.) Ambergris – AKA whale vomit – is sometimes used as a flavour enhancer in cigarettes. This (actually quite rare) substance is a by-product from sperm whales that’s caused by a build-up of the hard components of their favourite food, squid, in the guts, which is eventually expelled, along with faecal matter, in a smelly, oily blob. Delicious!

  5. Smoking kills more people than road traffic accidents. Not just RTAs, actually. In the UK, more deaths are caused each year by tobacco use than by HIV, illegal drug use, alcohol use, motor vehicle injuries, suicides and murders combined.

  6. Smoking can make you go blind. A study in the UK reported that smokers had a two to threefold increase in age-related macular degeneration (AMD). It’ll take more than a trip to Specsavers to solve that particular problem!

  7. Smoking makes you uglier. Smokers have paler skin and more wrinkles, because smoking reduces the blood supply to the skin and depletes vitamin A. Don’t want wrinkles round your mouth? Stop smoking right now!

  8. Smoking kills. Every five seconds, somewhere in the world, someone dies from tobacco use. And that’s as gruesome as it could possibly ever get.

feature image credit: Lightspring/Shutterstock 

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