Electronic Cigarette – The Debate

Since the appearance of electronic cigarettes on the market, their safety has been debated by health professionals and individuals. The fact that millions of people have swapped regular cigarettes to electronic ones in the past few years might call for research regarding the safety of these devices. Below you will find some information about the debate on electronic cigarettes and the available data, so you can make an informed decision whether or not you should use them.

The Research

Research has so far not confirmed that electronic cigarettes would negatively affect health. The only argument that politicians and activists have is that their safety is not proven. When one looks at the safety (or dangers) of real cigarettes, it is evident that taking away the almost 4000 toxic chemicals produced when burning tobacco, it is clear that it is a positive change. Nicotine, on the other hand is a medically graded chemical. In liquid form, it is considered to be a strong poison.


Quit Rates

The current success rate of quitting with nicotine patches and gums is less than seven percent, while this is much higher when it comes to electronic cigarettes. The truth is that those smoking e-cigs would usually not really quit nicotine; they only eliminate the four thousand toxins. Still, research shows that lung diseases are mostly caused by the smoke and not the nicotine. While nicotine affects the heart, it does not cause respiratory illnesses.

The Real Problem – No Regulation

Regulating the market of nicotine-containing liquids is a logical approach. Making sure that electronic cigarettes can only be purchased by people over 18 is also important. Therefore, the number of websites currently selling low quality liquids and devices have to go. Nicotine patches and gums are only available in pharmacies in most countries, but electronic cigarettes are not considered quitting aids by health professionals.

The Question of Tax Duty

Many supporters of legalizing e-cigarettes (it is banned in some countries, for example the EU member Hungary) claim that the only reason for opposition is that high duty tax cannot be added on the top of the prices, so the governments miss out on income. It might be true, considering that most countries have a 40-70 percent tax put on traditional cigarettes. When people swap these to electronic cigarettes, a great deal of income is lost.

Final Tips

Until the situation around electronic cigarettes is cleared, there are a few safety tips consumers should consider. It is proven by research that some people are allergic to PG (polypropylene glycol) which is used to delude liquid nicotine. It is a food-grade substance found in preserved meals, but can cause asthma attacks and respiratory allergies. An alternative to this type of liquid is VG, using vegetable glycerin as a base. When refilling cartridges, protective gloves need to be used, as nicotine can be absorbed through the skin and an overdose can occur. Make sure that you always use a quality supplier that can provide you with documentation about the safety and proper use of the electronic cigarettes.

Laura Wolf

Laura F Wolf is a health and diet writer, publishing about the health effects of different diets. She blogs about diet and acne, revitol products and alternative eating like paleo.

16 thoughts on “Electronic Cigarette – The Debate

  • August 24, 2013 at 2:40 am

    Can anyone provide me the list of top 15 e cig Companies and which one is best to use?Few days back I came across blog http://freeelectroniccigarettereview.net/ have a look at it as it also gives lot of information regarding e cig..

  • August 7, 2013 at 1:36 pm

    Very Good Article about e-cigs .And not biased which is good..The e-cigarette will be regulated I feel and all I hope is they are treated fair. However with the amount governments can lose in revenue I am quite sceptical of this.

  • July 29, 2013 at 9:27 am

    I have a feeling that the electronic cigarette is on it’s way to being regulated, but now believe that there will be less than 20 e cig companies left once the dust settles. This is not a bad thing as far as I am concerned, it will separate the chaff from the wheat, causing a safe and reliable e cigarette supply for smokers.


  • July 24, 2013 at 5:18 am

    The debate around electronic cigarettes is one of the big debates happening in the EU right now, with the UK planning to regulate them under the medicines regulations. Following what’s been happening there shows exactly what you stated, they are confused and not sure if electronic cigarettes are a good thing or not!

    You can read an overview of what’s been happening their here: http://www.smoketastic.com/blog/european-parliaments-vote-on-ecigarettes.html

    Thanks for letting people know about electronic cigarettes!

  • May 30, 2013 at 6:26 pm

    A well rounded article about e cigs.

    Although e cigarettes are undoubtedly a healthier alternative compared to tobacco I think it’s important to remember you are still inhaling chemicals into your lungs. The long term results of this are probably going to show that it has a somewhat negative effect on our health (but much less than inhaling burning tobacco leaves)

    I’ve recently started using eliquids made from 100% vegetable glycerin and natural organic flavorings. I think this is probably the best way to continue vaping while reducing possbile health concerns to a minimum.

  • May 15, 2013 at 4:14 am

    Thanks for all the comments. The truth is that the claims that kids who do not smoke regular cigarettes start with these are not founded. I haven’t seen a research so far confirming it. On the other hand, nicotine is a drug. And I believe if I did not get enough nicotine and caffeine my heart would stop beating. I would have a very low blood pressure indeed. The only reason why governments are trying to find an excuse to ban them is the lack of tax income. Would love your views on the above. Laura

  • April 24, 2013 at 6:04 am

    Electronic Cigarettes are safer & a healthier option compared to traditional tobacco cigarettes. I wouldn’t recommend a non smoker to start using a electronic cigarette to look cool or in trend. I personally was a heavy smoker going through 2 packs a day, until I saw an E-Lites electronic cigarette advert and gave it a shot seeing as tho I had nothing to lose. Two years on I have quit smoking and vaping all together, what am trying to say is that without using an electronic cigarette I would have probably, to this day still be smoking a tobacco cigarette.

  • April 23, 2013 at 10:45 am

    Electronic cigarettes may be safer than traditional tobacco cigarettes. But, are they safe, probably not. I wouldn’t recommend anyone start smoking e cigs or anything else but, if you already smoke. It’s probably safer to smoke electronic cigarettes over tobacco.

  • April 22, 2013 at 10:31 pm

    This is the innovative idea and technology what can save lots of life as well as raising hope of live longer with good health. But, I am fear here, whether it is possible to smoking community to accept it rather than tobacco based traditional smoking. Though, it is new innovation, need to take extra care of other side effect.

    • April 23, 2013 at 12:57 pm

      It took me three days to accept them….and quit smoking after 20 years. And my story is the same for many many many ex-smokers.
      I’ve switched to vaping 3,5 months ago, and I will NEVER go back

  • April 22, 2013 at 8:29 pm

    This article we. Blog is so wrong about the health effects of e-cigs. Does it have less carcinogens that reg cigs, maybe. BUT look at the scientific evedience on nicotine a d hoe it breaks down in the body into care carcenogenic chemicals in your body. I addition to the scientific double bilind study from Greece that show a direct indication of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Yes long term studies are t
    Out but they well I’m sure show more medical major health problems. Don’t foul yourself. E cigs are’t safe. Just quit!

  • April 22, 2013 at 11:16 am

    It is extremely important to research the companies you purchase from. There are many suppliers of electronic cigarettes and e-liquid. A few things to take into account: Does the supplier manufacturer the e-liquid in their own facilities or do they outsource from China? What ingredients are used in e-liquid. We use additives and flavorings only approved through FEMA/GRAS and the USP. Check to see if PG, VG, or a combination of the two are being used in case you are allergic. As with any reputable company we pride ourselves in making quality, safe products. We fully support prohibiting the sale of electronic cigarettes to minors.

    Robert Monroe

  • April 22, 2013 at 9:31 am

    This is as good a summary of these e-cig issues as I’ve seen. E-cigs are a innovative market & consumer reaction to the smoking issue that can help avoid tobacco, odor and nicotine. See my E Cig Werks blog at http://ecigwerks.blogspot.com/ for more.

  • April 22, 2013 at 7:41 am

    Some corrections:
    Gloves are not required for refilling. An overdose is impossible through skin-absorption, when using liquids with less than 75mg nicotine per ml, even when soaking your skin into the liquid.
    Most liquids are inbetween 12 and 24 mg/ml.

    Also, they are being regulated already. A lot even.
    See http://www.clivebates.com/?p=1092

    Regarding polypropylene glycol ; since 1947 research has been done on this. PG is not a problem, however some people are allergic to it. As with peanuts.
    It is not just a food-grade substance found in preserved meals, it is also a carrier for medicines to be inhaled by lung transplant patients. PG is everywhere, and has been inhaled as vape for years and years already.

    Finally, nicotine is not a problem at all. It has been stated and proved numerous times already: nicotine itself is not a hazardous drug, and is on the same level as caffeïne.

    By the way I love how you formulated this:
    “Research has so far not confirmed that electronic cigarettes would negatively affect health.”
    Wouldn’t it be more fair to state it that a lot of research has shown that electronic cigarettes do not negatively affect health?

    Because, I can also state that research has so far not confirmed that drinking excessive amounts of coffee would negatively affect health. Or eating garlic. Or working on a Sunday.
    The implied message is that you expect e-cigarettes have a negative impact on health, even though it is still not proven in research.
    That’s not fair. Especially seeing the fact that ecigarettes are a gateway out of tobacco, a substance that when smoked causes cancer, COPD, heart disease, etc. Smoking tobacco is responsible for millions of deaths each year, and we now are going to ban the proven non hazardous alternative..
    An outrage.

  • April 22, 2013 at 5:03 am

    Great article Laura. You summed up electronic cigarettes and the trials we face in trying to keep them legal very nicely!

    I think anyone that really thinks about the FDA’s actions and how they’ve related to ecigs over the last 4 years…. will see that it’s all about the money. The arguments that they have used against ecigs made absolutely no sense when tobacco cigarettes were being sold and taxed.

    I’d just advise people that if they are going to make the switch to ecigarettes, that they make sure they get a good brand and to stay away from the cheaper “gas station brands”.

    Here’s a good site I found that helps new ecig users find which ecig is best for them.



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *