Category Archives for "Truth Tuesday"

Cigarettes Are The Most Dangerous Substance For Health

Typically when you think of lives lost due to substances, your mind automatically goes to hard drugs like opiates and cocaine as the biggest offenders. But actually, you’d be wrong. Tobacco and alcohol are “by far” the worst drugs when it comes to taking human life, according to a 2017 status report on global statistics. So how did we find out cigarettes are the most dangerous substance for health? This study measured “disability adjusted life years” due to cancer, respiratory illnesses, and other diseases. It also took into account life years lost. Illegal drugs “didn’t even come close” to doing the harm that tobacco and alcohol cause world wide.

A lot of this harm has to do with prevalence. Smoking is widely available and most people can afford it. Around the world, one in seven adults smoke, while one in five drink. Death rates for smoking are three times higher per 100,000 people than for drinking. This is just further proof that we need to make vaping widely available for those that need to make the switch from smoking. Vaping has been proven to be 95% safer than smoking.

Cigarettes are the most dangerous substance in the world, not opioids

Despite the opioid crisis reaching epidemic proportions, smoking is still the number one health risk in the US in terms of substances. So why is the vape industry being demonized when it should be touted as a good alternative to smoking. Many believe that vaping’s public health benefits outweigh its risks. In fact, it’s even been proven that vaping will add 3.3 million life years to public health by the year 2070. Its time that the US take a page out the UK’s book and embrace vaping as a form of public health reform and a legitimate way to quit cigarettes. No one wants to get teenagers hooked on vaping. We just want to help smokers quit and get them vaping so they can live long and healthy lives.

If this new study is anything to go by, then we have a lot of work to do convincing the world to embrace vaping and to put down the combustible cigarette. Imaging how many lives we could save as a community if we took the stigma away from vaping and dispelled the myths surrounding e-cigs? Spread the word about the fact that cigarettes are the most dangerous substance around. Get your loved ones to switch to vaping. We need to be our own advocates.


The Rigidity in our Thinking: an Epidemic?

As is so often the case, society’s governing bodies are painfully slow to change. Especially, when that change seeks to disrupt a long-standing tradition of cigarette smoking and massive quarterly earnings. The World Health Organization estimates that there are more than 7 million deaths from smoking and other tobacco use annually, worldwide. More than 6 million of those deaths are the direct result of tobacco use.

The tobacco epidemic is one of the biggest public health threats the world has ever faced. No product, no activity, has been more ingrained into the fabric of life than tobacco cigarettes and smoking. 20 percent of the world’s population smokes 5.7 trillion cigarettes a year.

And yet, in the face of this alarming data, it is the “e-cigarette” that has been categorized as “an epidemic.”

What qualifies as an epidemic?

Oxford defines an epidemic as a sudden, widespread occurrence of a particular undesirable phenomenon.

The World Health Organization defines a pandemic as:

“an epidemic occurring worldwide, or over a very wide area, crossing international boundaries and usually affecting a large number of people.”

A public health emergency is usually what follows a confirmed epidemic. And yet, it appears that there is more condemnation of “e-cigarettes” than advocacy.

Look around.

Have you ever dropped everything and surveyed the world around you? A lot has changed.

Thirty years ago, the cigarette was much more of a symbol than it is now. Smoking was permitted on domestic flights, in cars where minors were present, and even on TV. The very first regular prime-time television news program was said to have been sponsored by Camel cigarettes.

Now, in today’s society, you’d be hard pressed to find people smoking in public areas, stinking up the shared air. It is this way because of the scientific information concerning the very real dangers associated with cigarette use. But even though smokers are no longer permitted to spark up in many public areas, they are still smoking. Which is a problem.

Health organization say E-cigarettes are a better option.

A recent study published in the Journal of Tobacco Control estimates that 6.6 million smokers could avoid premature death if 10 percent of the smoking population quits each of the next ten years.

The American Cancer Society and Public Health England have released statements advocating e-cigarettes as a method to quitting smoking:

Individuals be encouraged to switch to the least harmful form of tobacco product possible; switching to the exclusive use of e-cigarettes is preferable to continuing to smoke combustible products.”

What are we talking about?

We are having the wrong conversation because we refuse to engage in the right one. Instead, lobbyist and other agenda-driven bodies continue to disproportionately question and then vilify a product as an “epidemic”, when in reality, it has the potential to end one.

As Dr. Sanjay Gupta said in a recent CNN exclusive, “Every time we have something that has potential harm, how do you make sure you’re emphasizing enough of the harm, without completely erasing the benefit.”

The answer is quite simple — you state the facts and state them lucidly.

Especially relevant: last week’s Truth Tuesday

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Fear-Mongering in Vogue?

During the final days of 2016, legendary Vogue editor Anna Wintour was overheard lambasting president-elect Donald Trump during a train ride. While the fashion mogul has since apologized for speaking at length against the president, the magazine has forever changed. Vogue now takes a more unashamedly political stance on certain controversial issues. Most noteworthy for this industry — issues like the “growing health concerns surrounding vaping”. Fear-mongering in Vogue?

Recently, Vogue magazine published an article titled, “Health Concerns About Vaping Are Growing – Here’s Why”. The piece was written beautifully by Julia Felsenthal, and detailed her recent visit to Vape Town, an e-cigarette supplier in Manhattan’s West Village.

An article of opinion and dodgy “facts”

From the get-go, it is easy to recognize how Felsenthal feels about the e-cigarette industry as a whole. With carefully chosen words are subtle jabs, describing the e-cigarette industry as a “culture in flux”. She cites a recent John Hopkins study, which supposedly found significant levels of lead and arsenic in the aerosol of a variety of refillable tanks. Felsenthal went on to add fuel to the issue of long-term-cigarette use and the lack of knowledge therein. Surprisingly, not once did the article mention Public Health England or the American Cancer Society’s recent clinical recommendation,

“…individuals be encouraged to switch to the least harmful form of tobacco product possible; switching to the exclusive use of e-cigarettes is preferable to continuing to smoke combustible products.”

Rather than paint an impartial picture of her experience, the writer made the e-cigarette world out to be some shadowy, dystopian sector of society. A place where illicit substances are readily available and consumed by easily impressionable underage people. Read the full article here.

Has vaping caused an epidemic of teen nicotine use?

Vaping is vaping — whether you’re doing it with or without nicotine. One of the most important and unique aspects of vaping is probably the vaper’s ability to control their own nicotine consumption.

Most noteworthy, data gathered in the annual Monitoring the Future (MTF) survey conducted by the University of Michigan for the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), asked teens if they use nicotine when they vape.

The questionnaire found that only about 20 percent of 10th and 12th graders and just 13 percent of 8th graders who vaped used nicotine. The author of the study says the results suggest “the recent rise in adolescent vaporizer use does not necessarily indicate a nicotine epidemic.”

What about the all the toxic chemicals?

According to the Vogue article, Stanton Glantz, Ph.D., of the University of California, believes:

“…most people just think about the e-cigarette as kind of like a cigarette, except it doesn’t have as much bad stuff in it. But when you heat it up, you just get a whole different mixture of toxic chemicals.”

As a result of the aforementioned John Hopkins study, researchers and doctors have come forth with rebuttals refuting that study’s claim. Dr. Konstantinos Farsalinos was one of the first to disprove the study saying:

“Significant amount’ of metals the authors reported they found were measured in ug/kg. In fact, they are so low that for some cases (chromium and lead) I calculated that you need to vape more than 100 ml per day in order to exceed the FDA limits for daily intake from inhalational medications.”

Dr. David Dawit, the Chief Scientific Officer at Eos Scientific, believes the “toxic metals” study is full of misleading, misrepresented information. He called it, “fraught with methodological flaws”, and agrees with Dr. Farsalinos’ stance. Reference safety limits cannot be applied to vaping as the method requires constant exposure.

Felsenthal concludes her piece by referencing a mother she overheard on the phone talking about her teenage son’s burgeoning vaping habit. The mother mentioned that she tried vaping and found it disgusting.

Vaping is a method of harm reduction

While vaping is not for everyone, when the “disgusting” activity is used in the replacement of traditional tobacco cigarettes over a 10-year period, approximately 6.6 million lives can be saved from premature deaths, with 86.7 million fewer life years lost in the most optimistic scenario, according to the authors of a BMJ Tobacco Control study.

Especially relevant: last week’s Truth Tuesday.

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Smoking on Network TV?

If you’re a fan of the Late Show with Stephen Colbert, then you may have seen last night’s show. Two-time Oscar winner, Sean Penn, sparked up not one — but two cigarettes — during his interview with Stephen Colbert. What’s this? Smoking on network TV?

It’s true. Not long after Penn walked onto the stage to a round of applause, he took his seat and almost immediately went into his pocket, pulled out a cigarette, and put a flame to it. In true TV form, Colbert responded by pulling a glass ashtray out from under his desk, which he then placed before Penn.

Isn’t smoking on Network Television outlawed?

Yes — but characters on TV programs still continue to smoke.

Not too long ago, cigarette companies were some of television’s biggest advertisers with tobacco products featured prominently on screen. The very first prime-time television news program was said to be sponsored by Camel cigarettes. But, throughout the 1960s, new studies were published. The studies shed light on the dangers associated with traditional cigarette smoking and the use of tobacco products.

With the release of the first Surgeon General’s Report on Smoking and Health published in 1964, a massive shift took America by storm. The change influenced broadcast television. In 1967, the FCC required television stations to air anti-smoking advertisements free of charge. By 1970, Congress passed the Public Health Cigarette Smoking Act, which banned the advertising of cigarettes on television and radio. According to, the last cigarette commercial aired on Jan. 1, 1971.

But even still, characters on TV programs continued to smoke.

Why did Sean Penn promote smoking on network TV?

Sean Penn admitted to Stephen Colbert that he took a sedative before the show aired. He said this as he proceeded to light a cigarette. While cigarettes aren’t considered sedatives, isn’t the purpose of smoking a cigarette to promote relaxation? While no one really knows what led the actor to promote smoking on network TV, what we do know is that Sean Penn looked a little disheveled as he took deep inhales from his cigarette.

According to, Colbert asked Penn to reconsider his use of cigarettes by saying,

“Please don’t smoke anymore. I don’t mind. My parents smoked when I was a child so it gives me happy memories to smell cigarette smoke, but you know we want you to be around for a long time and those things are bad for you.”

Especially relevant: last week’s Truth Tuesday.

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This Sh!t is Seriously Getting old!

This just in! According to new research conducted by Japanese scientists, E-cigarettes are consequently far more dangerous than how they are marketed. AND, they’re doing more harm than good. I think I speak for all of us when I say, this sh!t is seriously getting old! This is just one of many e-cigarette smear campaigns currently on the market today.

Four years ago, researchers at Japan’s National Institute for Public Health claimed they had found two carcinogens— formaldehyde and acetaldehyde— as a result of the vapor produced by several types of e-cigarettes during a study charged by the country’s ministry of health.

“One brand of e-cigarette produces 10 times more formaldehyde— a substance used in embalming that has been linked to sick building syndrome— than a regular cigarette,” said Naoki Kunugita, the lead researcher of the study.

Enough with the inaccurate portrayals already.

First of all, the study, which was conducted in November of 2014, is far from new. Yet, agenda driven click bait sites continue to publish this, and other articles, citing information that is either old, overwhelmingly false, or both.

What’s even worse, the Japanese study wasn’t even completely factual, having come to no conclusion that all, most, or any e-cigarette contained ten times more carcinogens than regular cigarettes.

In conclusion, the research by Kunugita and his team advised that the levels of formaldehyde in vapors from high-voltage devices are “almost identical to those in traditional cigarettes”.

Back in 2014, Greek cardiologist Konstantinos Farsalinos spoke out about the study’s findings saying,

“…the high formaldehyde reading may have been caused by several factors, including a faulty e-cigarette device. A single extreme case out of many products tested. Obviously, we have to realize that focusing the discussion on one of the tens of carcinogens present in tobacco cigarette smoke is misleading. Even if e-cigarettes contained similar, or higher, levels of formaldehyde, they do not contain the majority of other toxic and carcinogenic substances present in cigarette smoke.”

Those with knowledge must stay ever-vigilant

Sadly, these tactics to discredit do have an effect on people and what decisions they make. It is up to those with the right, scientific-backed information to continue to stay on the lookout for agenda-driven information and refute these studies convincingly. There are too many lives at stake.

Especially relevant: Last Week’s Truth Tuesday

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We Market to Adults, Not Teenagers

A 2017 Vaper Preference Survey found that an overwhelming majority of consumers who use vaping products are former smokers. Hon Lik, the man credited for having invented the modern electronic cigarettes back in 1966, was a lifelong smoker. Many, if not most, electronic cigarette companies and manufacturers were/are owned by former smokers. Fully aware of how smoking can adversely affect health, it only makes sense that vaping products would be marketed to rid an adult smoker of their habit — not to entice teenagers. Vaping has always been about harm reduction, first and foremost. We market to adults, not teenagers.

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Toxic Metals found in E-Cigarette Vapor? Tell me More.

For those who follow the media as it relates to the e-cigarette industry, you may have noticed a singular, overarching “claim” that dominated the headlines last week. According to News Week, Business Insider, Medical News Today, and a flock of other media outlets: toxic heavy metals such as chromium, nickel, arsenic, lead, and others are leaking from e-cigarettes into e-juice.

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The Miracle Pill?

There is no denying that the flu has been on a vicious tear this year. 1 in 10 deaths in the U.S. attributed to the flu or pneumonia. According to the CDC, 63 children have died thus far from this year’s monster flu virus compared to the 110 children claimed by the previous year’s influenza.

“This year’s Flu Season is breaking records and influenza activity is still on the rise,” says Center for Disease Control acting director, Dr. Anne Schuchat.

But hope could be on the horizon with a miracle flu pill that is said to be able to halt or even kill the virus within a single day with just a single-dose needed.

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Sitting is the new smoking… you may want to sit down for this

Sitting is the new smoking… you may want to sit down for this. Actually, it’s probably better if you stand back up. An insidious sickness is causing roughly 9 percent of the world’s population to suffer a premature death. For people who live sedentary lives — and are often sitting down —anyway. Roughly 700 million of the 7.6 billion people worldwide are at risk. We should call it what it is — a pandemic.

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