The history of smoking is rich and interesting. Indigenous tribes across the globe smoked sacred herbs and tobaccos as part of ceremonial events and special occasions. It started commercially in the US – growing in popularity until almost everyone across all backgrounds and cultures were smoking.
But the future of smoking is uncertain. Recently numbers of smokers worldwide stand at a record low. Harmful cigarettes have been ditched in favour of supposedly ‘healthy’ alternatives – notably vaping. Despite a swift uptake and switch from traditional smoking methods to chemical products and vapes the public are now becoming more aware of the potential risks associated with them. The risks attached with smoking are well known – but vaping is too young yet for us to fully understand its effects – with few studies indicating its safety. And in this it isn’t a case of ‘no news is good news’.
Touted as a ‘healthful alternative’ to smoking, vaping is becoming incredibly popular. It is predominantly marketing to help people stop smoking tobacco, but they continue to be nicotine addicted, causing them to then rely on vaping as a substitute. Other people start vaping, only to then become addicted as a result – mainly young people who have never smoked a cigarette previously.
The market is estimated to be worth $14 billion (estimated to grow $20 billion in 2020, with roughly 50 million in the US identifying as ‘vapers’. It is telling that cigarette companies are not only actively investing in vaping - they are also launching their own brands. But when something is too good to be true, it usually is.
Yes, and no. Firstly it’s important to note that there really is no way to truly understand the impact of vaping and e-cigarettes, since it’s such a new phenomenon. Vaping can certainly be very dangerous and along with pre-rolled cigarettes, they both have problems.
Vaping generally involves inhaling vapour produced electronically using a liquid comprised of a variety of compounds, usually containing nicotine (crucial for those brands that promise to get smokers away from the risks of tobacco).
When you vape, it is impossible to control strength of the active ingredients in the smoke you inhale. Recent studies are showing that manufacturers of vaping oils are adding ingredients that can artificially enhance the ability of our bodies to absorb the active ingredients and therefore affect what we might perceive as the strength of the ingredients. Juul, for example, has a patent on their formula for their proprietary oil to enhance its ability to be absorbed by our bodies. The brand actually had to cut back the strength of their original prototype because the nicotine delivered was too strong.
Smoking isn’t necessarily better for you than vaping – especially if you buy pre-rolled cigarettes. When you buy pre-rolled cigarettes, you really have no idea as to what is inside your cigarette and what you are taking into your body. You know even less what is in the oils that are used in vaping cartridges. As a result many people are becoming sick and even dying due to substances in the vaping oils. Even the officials are having trouble identifying what ingredients are in the oils that are making people sick.
The same is true when you smoke a pre rolled cigarette. You have no control or knowledge of what other chemicals might be included that the company may use to enhance the strength of their product. Years ago cigarette companies developed a process that removes all the nicotine from the tobacco leaves – they would then return it to the leaves in measured amounts so, according to them, the nicotine strength will be uniform. We never know what the effects of these complicated chemical processes have on us.
The risks of smoking pre-rolled cigarettes are well known – the plethora of toxic chemicals found in commercial smokes can cause heart disease, cancer, chronic lung conditions and infertility. Only comprehensive and extensive studies will reveal exactly how harmful or (‘healthy’) vaping actually is.
In recent years there has been a return to hand rolled cigarettes. There are a number of reasons for this – notably the cost (rolling up is much cheaper compared with purchasing ready-made cigarettes) and environmental preference. But health is also playing its part – and it seems hand rolled cigarettes are set to make more of an impact in 2020.
It is crucially important that you know what you are smoking and taking into your body. With so many people focused on pharmaceuticals, nutrition, even the chemicals in their water, it makes sense that we should also take care when we smoke, whatever and however we choose to do it.
When you roll your own cigarette, you know exactly how much tobacco you put in, and you know the condition of the tobacco. Some smoking products are stronger than others, but you are free to choose, and can see and feel the quality as you roll your cigarette. You can even choose an herbal tobacco alternative or organically grown products to roll into your cigarette so you know exactly what is in the cigarette you're smoking.
Make rolling up easy with our simple, stylish smoking accessories. Shop the collection now. For more smoking tips check out related articles here.
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