Electronic Cigs: Are you trading one bad habit for another? - AmericaNowNews.com

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Electronic Cigs: Are you trading one bad habit for another?

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The Centers for Disease Control reports nearly a quarter of adult smokers say they've tried electronic or e-cigarettes. Many of them do it in the hopes of breaking their smoking addiction. But could they simply be trading one bad habit for another? Here's what you need to know.

So what exactly is an e-cigarette? It's an electronic battery operated device with a heating element that creates steam from a flavored liquid cartridge that can come with or without nicotine.

They're touted by the manufacturers as better for your health because you're not inhaling smoke and they leave only a water vapor trail.

E-cigarette vapors dissipate quickly, but little is known about the dangers of being in the same space as an e-smoker. Consequently, using them in many public areas is being banned, giving rise to some new businesses across the country, known as vapor bars.

A new study by the University of Hawaii Cancer Center finds young motivated people who want to quit smoking are trying e-cigarettes.

Dustin Malama was ready to quit after smoking for ten years. He turned to e-cigarettes when no other method worked. This time he had success by progressively lowering the amount of nicotine he inhaled from his e-cigarettes.

"The idea is, every single flavor we can have with or without nicotine and a full third of our clients, no nicotine at all," says Malama.

Malama quit smoking using e-cigarettes. "The fact that I went from anywhere from a pack to two packs a day and going down to zero packs on the e-cigarettes. This is a miracle," says Malama.

Medical experts are concerned about possible cancer causing compounds in the liquids heated to make the vapor. And they're not sure if "e-cigarettes," are more or less addictive than their tobacco counter parts.

But tobacco companies have noticed the trend and e-cigarette manufacturers.

Lila Johnson is a cancer prevention advocate. "The companies are being purchased by the tobacco industry because they're seeing a decrease in the use of regular cigarettes. These are electronic, they're jazzy, they're exciting and unfortunately, they are unregulated and we just do not know of the safety," says Johnson.

But for some serious ex-tobacco smokers, they've already made a big impact.

Matt Gabor is an e-smoker. "I smoked about a pack a day for about four years," says Gabor. "But when I started smoking e-cigarettes a lot, I didn't feel like smoking cigarettes as much. So I stuck with it and it helped a lot over the months I got off cigarettes."

What is unclear to the FDA is whether e-cigarette use may lead young people to try other tobacco products.

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