From the beginning of the e-cigarette industry, one of the biggest selling points that powered vaping companies like Smoking Things was the possibility that it could be an avenue for harm reduction. If someone couldn’t – or didn’t want to – quit smoking, vaping was an alternative that was free of tar and potentially less dangerous than smoking. The problem, though, was that no evidence yet existed to back up the claim that vaping might be less harmful than smoking. Those who made the switch from smoking to vaping simply had to hope for the best.
The vaping industry is now more than a decade old. We now know that it isn’t possible to call e-cigarettes safe in absolute terms. Vaping, in other words, is definitely not the same as inhaling plain air or water vapor. However, the increasing number of scientific studies about vaping that have produced positive results lend credence to the hope that vaping really is reducing harm by preventing or slowing the onset of smoking-related diseases. If you’re a smoker and aren’t sure whether switching to vaping is the right decision for you – or if you have a loved one who smokes and aren’t sure what advice to give that person – you may find it reassuring to learn that recent scientific studies have produced a great deal of positive evidence about the safety of vaping. These are just a few of those studies.
No Negative Effects From Long-Term Vaping
In this Amsterdam study, researchers tracked the health parameters of 209 smokers who switched to an e-cigarette brand called Puritane. The study tracked the volunteers for two years and found that vaping decreased the urge to smoke and caused no clinically significant health effects. The study also found that vaping did not cause the volunteers to gain weight. Although it must be said that an e-cigarette company – Fontem Ventures, owner of the Blu and Puritane brands – funded this study, the study was peer reviewed and published in a major journal.
Vapers Report Smoking Cessation and Improved Quality of Life
This study focused on the customers of an online vape shop based in the Netherlands. The purpose of the study was to gather information about why people vape and what their perceptions are about the benefits of vaping. Of the people surveyed, 81 percent responded that vaping helped them to quit smoking. In addition, 84.2 percent reported that vaping improved their health and quality of life.
New Report Summarizes Hundreds of Vaping-Related Studies
In early 2018, the National Academies of Science, Engineering and Medicine released a report summarizing the findings of about 5,000 clinical studies about vaping. The report found that there is “significant evidence” suggesting that vaping results in far less exposure to toxins than smoking. The report also found that people who vape are often less dependent on nicotine than those who smoke.
The report stated that there is “conclusive evidence” that switching to vaping reduces exposure to cancer-causing substances compared to smoking and that – at least in the short term – vaping reduces the risk of heart and lung disease compared to smoking. It is still unknown whether long-term vaping can lead to respiratory problems.
The goal of the report was to examine the overall impact of vaping on public health. Although vaping seems to improve health outcomes among those who would otherwise smoke, that benefit must be weighed against negative aspects such as underage vaping and secondhand nicotine exposure. The report concluded that the overall effect of vaping on public health is still unknown.
Daily Vaping Shows Strong Correlation With Smoking Cessation
In this 2017 study, researchers gathered data from the 2014 and 2015 National Health Interview Survey. In that survey, 15,532 reported that they either currently smoked or quit smoking in 2010 or later. Among those people, 25.2 percent reported that they no longer smoked. The researchers found that 52.2 percent of the people who had quit smoking used e-cigarettes, while only 28.2 percent of quitters did not vape. Daily e-cigarette use was, in fact, the single most common attribute among those who had quit smoking.
Longest Ever Study Finds No Health Concerns From Vaping
Although this is a small study with just a handful of participants, it is a significant one because it is the longest study about vaping to date. Published in the November 2017 issue of “Scientific Reports,” this study examined the health of nine vapers with an average age of just under 30 years and compared those people to 12 people who neither smoked nor vaped. The study took place over 3.5 years. Compared to the control group, the researchers found no negative effects on the blood pressure, lung function, heart rate or body weight among those who vaped. In fact, the vaping group didn’t differ from the control group in any significant way. Over the 3.5-year duration of the study, the researchers found no adverse health effects from vaping.
Smoking Changes Your Gut Bacteria; Vaping Doesn’t
With up to six pounds of bacteria – trillions of organisms in all – helping to digest food and protect the body from invading nasties, the human intestinal tract is a pretty busy place. In 2018, an early study of the effects of vaping on human gut bacteria compared the intestinal flora of smokers, vapers and nonsmokers. The study found that smoking drastically alters the body’s bacterial population. Among the 10 smokers tested, the researchers found that smoking reduced the diversity of bacteria in the gut. Smoking decreased the population of Bacteriodes, a genus of bacteria responsible for reducing bile in the body and fermenting sugar derivatives that might otherwise be harmful. Smoking increased the population of Prevotella, a genus of bacteria that tends to live near abscesses and infections. The study found no significant differences in the gut bacteria of vapers compared to nonsmokers.
About the Author
SmokingThings.com is a new online vape shop that wants to be your one-stop shop for your favorite e-liquids. Smoking Things carries a growing selection of vape juices and offers a 10 percent discount to all new customers with the coupon code FIRST10.