Study Shows that E-Cigarettes Are Actually Toxic
Often regarded as a safe alternative to tobacco products, electronic cigarettes have gained popularity throughout the United States. According to a recent study, however, these smokeless nicotine products actually contain toxic substances that could endanger human health.
Recently, a team UCLA researchers determined that e-cigarettes could increase a users risk for oral disease, thanks to toxic substances and nanoparticles found in the breathable vapor. To reach their findings, the team exposed human cell cultures from the oral cavity to varying brands of e-cigarette vapor for a full day. Ultimately, the researchers found that nanoparticles of carbon, silica and metal decreased the levels of an antioxidant called glutathione, effectively weakening the oral cavity’s natural defense mechanisms. In fact, the damage was so severe, approximately 85 percent of all tested cells died during the experiment.
Assessing the Health Effects of E-cigarettes
While countless studies have shown the damaging effects of tobacco smoke, there are still few studies evaluating the potential risks associated with e-cigarette vapor. That said, this recent study does appear to show that these vapors are capable of killing healthy cells in the mouth. In turn, there may also be reason to believe the vapor could kill cells in the throat and lungs, leaving the body’s immune system compromised.
What’s more, experts also theorize that, like tobacco smoke, e-cigarette vapor could alter oral microbiome, resulting in an increased risk of lung, mouth, throat and digestive system diseases.
There are about 600 bacterial species within the average human mouth, with many playing key roles in promoting good overall health. By killing beneficial bacteria, e-cigarette vapor could potentially allow damaging bacteria a better opportunity to propagate throughout the body.
More research is needed to determine whether e-cigarettes come with serious health risks. In the meantime, you can protect your well-being by avoiding these products until more evidence comes to light. If you are looking for effective ways to stop smoking, talk to your doctor about new medications, patches and gums, which have been shown to safely reduce nicotine cravings in clinical trials.