Maintain An ‘Open-Minded’ Perspective On E-Cigs
7 International Tobacco Experts Have Prompted Regulators in the U.S. To Maintain An ‘Open-Minded’ Perspective On E-Cigs
In news that was recently reported by Georgetown University Medical Center, it seems that a group of international experts have spoken out in favor of electronic cigarettes… or at least, in favor of maintaining a broad and ‘open-minded’ approach to them.
In the Journal Addiction, a group of 7 investigators (all from around the world and leaders in their own fields) helped to compile a report that attempted to make use of all of the electronic cigarette studies and evidence published to-date, and ended up suggesting that there’s a very good chance that E-cigs could actually lead to an overall reduction in the number of people who smoke, and could even reduce the number of smoking-related deaths caused by the usage of traditional tobacco cigarettes.
This stands in stark contrast to what many people believe. A lot of people believe that E-cigs are dangerous – but more and more evidence is actually saying that they are much, much less harmful than tobacco cigarettes.
Here’s a list of the investigators who took part in compiling the report…
- David T. Levy, PhD, of Georgetown University
- Michael Cummings, PhD, MPH, of the Medical University of South Carolina
- Andrea C. Villanti, PhD, MPH from Truth Initiative
- Ray Niaura, PhD from Truth Initiative
- David B. Abrams, PhD, from Truth Initiative
- Geoffrey T. Fong, PhD, of the University of Waterloo in Canada
- Ron Borland, PhD, of Cancer Control Victoria, in Australia
Some of the language in the report seemed to echo thoughts that have long been a part of the E-cig movement in the United States. Among the sentiments expressed by the investigators was the idea that E-cigs, despite a negative media slant, actually tend to be used almost exclusively by smokers, ex-smokers, and people who are at a high risk to become smokers themselves.
Here’s a quote that helps to summarize some of the main thought processes of the report.
“We believe that the discussion to date has been slanted against e-cigarettes, which is unfortunate, because the big picture tells us that these products appear to be used mostly by people who already are or who are likely to become cigarette smokers…” – David T. Levy, PhD, MPH
What evidence did they look at to compile this report?
In an article that was published on sciencedaily.com, it would seem as though the majority of the research was conducted in the U.S., England, and Canada. Basically, these studies have shown a drastic decrease in smoking, and have also noted higher rates of vaping during the same time period. The link is certainly said to be meaningful, and the investigators say that there’s a good chance that E-cigarette usage actually encourages cessation from cigarettes – despite the fact that people usually claim that the opposite is true.
Of course, the report goes on to confirm that the investigators were in no way trying to say that E-cigs should be encouraged among young people – but that tobacco control policy should be aimed at discouraging cigarette use while also, at the same time, helping to provide smokers with a substitute.
E-cigs, as it turns out, might be capable of doing the trick.
E-cigs continue to face media scrutiny, despite evidence that seems to support their safety
Despite the fact that E-cigs have been pretty repeatedly shown to be safer than cigarettes in basically every way, they still face a great deal of media criticism – which is unfortunate. Some people simply cannot let go of the fact that they haven’t been around for a long time, and some people even go as far as to claim that E-cigs are just as bad as analog cigarettes!
It’s important to understand, however, that the vast majority of evidence is saying the opposite. Not only are E-cigs said to be safer, they’re actually being shown to be much safer, and even beneficial in helping to solve the problem because there is a very good chance that they will help to keep smokers from using as much tobacco in the future.