New JAMA study: Vaping is up to 98% less toxic than smoking

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is trying very hard to convince the American public that vaping is extremely detrimental to one’s health., particularly among teenagers.  Every now and then, FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb acknowledges that electronic cigarettes can be beneficial for adult smokers in search of tobacco harm reduction, but he chooses a very precise language in his statements.

Rarely has a member of the FDA stated that vaping is a safe and effective way to quit smoking.  U.S. public health officials claim that there is no evidence to support such claims.  Advertising of vaping as a smoking cessation tool is strictly prohibited by the federal government, even in locally owned Mom and Pop vape shops.

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This same vaping-as-a-stop-smoking-aid messaging is also forbidden in the mainstream media and even privatized blogs and websites.  The only exception is when the business owner or individual blogger is quoting an appropriate research study as the source.    Meanwhile, the FDA and other anti-vaping activists continue to distort facts and spread misinformation in an attempt to convince the American People that vaping is just as deadly as smoking.

A recent vaping study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) is gaining a modest following in the mainstream media lately.  Authored by Dr. Maciej Goniewicz of the Roswell Park Cancer Center, the research indicates that vaping is significantly less toxic than smoking, up to 98% less toxic, in fact.

Overview of the JAMA vaping study

The FDA and other public health officials tend to hang their legislative hat on the idea that more research on the long-term effects of vaping is warranted before the U.S. government can fully endorse e-cigarettes as a smoking cessation product.  According to a report published on CNN, Dr. Goniewicz agrees to some extent, but he also states that there are scientific principles which allow researchers to closely estimate these potential long-term effects quite easily.

"One of the ways to do that is to measure chemicals in our body that can indicate exposure to toxicants, so some biomarkers, and that is what we did in the (JAMA) study,"

The researchers began by selecting a group of over 5,000 adult participants.  They were then divided into four distinct groups.

  • Combustible tobacco cigarette smokers-only
  • Non-tobacco, nicotine-enhanced vapers-only
  • Dual users
  • Non-smokers/non-vapers

The Goniewicz team evaluated approximately 50 biomarkers of each member of the four groups.  Biomarkers were selected based on typical identifications with associated toxicities exposure levels of combustible tobacco products.  Related categories of biomarkers include urinary metabolites, minor tobacco alkaloids, arsenic and arsenic compounds, heavy metals, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, and Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs).

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What the researchers determined is that the vaping-only group exhibited an average of 93% fewer toxins compared to the smoking-only and dual user groups.  The high-low range for the vapers was between 10-98%.  Perhaps most surprising, however, is the discovery that dual users exhibit the highest levels of tobacco toxicant exposure, even compare to smoking-only participants. 

“Dual users evidenced the highest levels of tobacco toxicant exposure, even more than exclusive smokers. While likely influenced by smoking frequency, this finding has also been consistent in the literature and is cause for concern as most e-cigarette users are dual users."

Dr. Goniewicz further concludes that vaping can be extremely useful in helpin` adults to quit smoking, but only if the devices are used properly.  Dual use is never recommended.  The only way to quit safely and effectively while immediately reducing exposure to carcinogens and other toxicities is to completely switch to vaping.  No cheating is allowed. 

Related Article:  Public health experts ask: Should ‘stupid kids’ be allowed to kill vaping

(Image courtesy of Shutterstock)

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