Electronic Cigarettes are not a gateway to smoking
Earlier this year it was reported by several media sources that there were growing fears electronic cigarettes could act as a gateway to smoking. These reports focused on electronic cigarettes glamourising smoking, encouraging non nicotine users to try them and then becoming addicted to nicotine before moving on to tobacco cigarettes. However, a new study shows this is not the case at all. The Journal of Tobacco Studies carried out a study of 26,500 people in 27 countries across Europe and found that just 1% of non-smokers had tried vaping. The study found that heavy smokers were the most likely group to use electronic cigarettes with 20% of them vaping at least once. This was followed by 4% of former smokers who had tried electronic cigarettes. However these reports do appear to be missing one important piece of information and that is whether the electronic cigarettes used by the 1% of non-smokers and the 4% of former smokers actually contained nicotine. Many electronic cigarette manufacturers (including Litejoy) offer nicotine free electronic cigarette refills and e shishas which are popular with non-smokers and former smokers who like to just enjoy the flavours without the risk of becoming addicted. Commenting on this study, Konstantinos Farsalinos, a cardiologist at the Onassis Cardiac Surgery Centre in Athens says "This study verifies that e-cigarette use does not renormalise smoking. The results show minimal adoption by non-smokers." In fact, the findings of this study seem to support the argument by organisations such as the Royal College of Physicians who believe that e-cigarettes could lead to significant falls in the prevalence of smoking, prevent many deaths and episodes of serious illness. Electronic cigarettes provide an alternative to smoking that contains just 5 ingredients compared to the proven 4000+ ingredients found in tobacco cigarettes. Of the 4000+ ingredients in tobacco cigarettes, the majority of them are dangerous, toxic and even cancer-causing. The 5 ingredients found in an electronic cigarette have been safely used in every day products for over 50 years indicating that they are a much healthier alternative. It is estimated that across Europe, 29 million people have used an electronic cigarette.