​Vaper’s Tongue: What It Is and How to Fix It.

“Vaper’s tongue” is a condition where — unexpectedly and without warning — the vaper experiences a diminished experience of flavours during vaping, as if the ability to taste were dramatically reduced or diminished. This is a nearly universal phenomenon that arises from time to time for the vast majority of vapers. Duration of the condition may last from one to three days. More than that is rare, but not totally uncommon. Interestingly, less than that is also unusual. After the dreaded vaper’s tongue has struck and afflicted a given vaper.

Continue reading “​Vaper’s Tongue: What It Is and How to Fix It.”

A Billion Lives has world première, revealing powerful forces aiding the tobacco industry.

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‘We need to cut the head off the monster,’ said Biebert, ‘and the monster is being funded by big business. We need more than the movie. People need to get the right information.’
Those of us outside the vaping world have probably looked at e-cigarettes, wondering why on earth these could be better for your health. Or we may have thought they were a fad, since the only people I knew who vaped were tech hipsters, who enjoyed vaping as though it was a matter of course, and nothing to be curious about—thereby keeping their habit a closed shop. But then, perhaps they were tired of repeating themselves, and had settled into being comfortable with their e-cigs.
A Billion Lives is a documentary that takes a look into this world, but it does so much more. The title refers to the number of people who can be saved if they give up smoking, but there are powerful forces at play to ensure that people don’t. And those forces have ensured that there is misinformation about vaping and the potential for the technology to save lives.
Filmmaker Aaron Biebert, who directed and narrated the film which had its world première in Wellington as part of the Doc Edge Festival, journeyed to 13 countries on four continents to find similar patterns worldwide: here is a life-saving technology of e-cigarettes, but governments were banning them or fining citizens over their use, ignoring the science and deciding to be complicit with the tobacco industry in keeping people addicted to a harmful product. Instead, governments spend money spreading lies about e-cigarettes, calling them a gateway to cigarettes, or that one could get formaldehyde poisoning, claims that the film demonstrably refutes. E-cigarettes are not completely safe, and the film acknowledges that, but they have proven to be a successful tool to help those giving up smoking, especially where mainstream solutions have failed.
In his own country, the US, Biebert points out that governments collect far more revenue from cigarette taxation than from several industries combined, and have no real incentive to cut off the flow of dollars. E-cigarettes, which were invented by pharmacist Hon Lik in China, were conceived as a way to give up smoking, and have been successful for 30 million people around the world. A Billion Lives points out that nicotine is not what causes lung cancer, and that the US Surgeon-General has said as much. What are harmful are the tar and 4,000 chemicals in modern cigarettes. It equates nicotine with coffee in terms of addictiveness, and the figure of 95 per cent less harmful than a typical cigarette featured prominently in the film. Vaping essentially allows one to get the pleasure of nicotine without the harm of the tar and toxins.
Yet as a society, we have come to equate nicotine as being the evil, addictive substance, and that’s no accident.
This point is made halfway into the film, with a good part of the first section looking into the history of cigarettes (Flintstones sponsor announcements for Winston cigarettes elicited laughs from the audience), and David Goerlitz, the Winston male model from the 1980s, being a particularly effective interviewee, discussing how he went from a smoking advocate earning millions to having a crisis of conscience when his brother developed lung cancer and died. Goerlitz went to the other side, and became a high-profile spokesman who was able to talk in plain language just what governments, Big Tobacco, and Big Pharma (which sells patches and gum, and would like to continue doing so) were doing. Health professionals were being marketed to far more than the public, permitting Big Pharma to continue to sell its products, the film notes.
Biebert was able to get other interviewees at a very high level, including Dr Derek Yach, the former executive director of the World Health Organization, and Dr Delon Human, former president of the World Medical Association, among others, speaking plainly about how lives could be saved through vaping e-cigarettes, a tool which could get smokers to kick their habit.
Meanwhile, the pro-smoking side was represented through historical clips—you get the feeling that we had only touched the surface of what was out there, with corporations spending thousands of millions to fund biased studies and get on to our airwaves.
Beautifully shot and scored, this independently funded feature tells a story about our times and just why so many citizens today are wary of their governments and multinational corporations. Those who oppose global trade agreements, for instance, do not do so in isolation—and while A Billion Lives takes no political side, it does tap into the Zeitgeist of our modern suspicion about what is on our airwaves and what are the motives behind it. Like Adam Curtis, whose documentaries seek to explain the complex in simple terms, Biebert has done the same, narrating and directing, although he appears on camera as well when narrative gaps need to be plugged. He is an honest, frank speaker, and gives the film a personal touch.
Young smokers who tried e-cigarettes were often people who already smoked and saw them as a way to give up their addiction, and most, Biebert pointed out in a post-screening Q&A, were not even using nicotine in their e-cigarettes.
Yet the state of California, where Biebert is based, spent $75 million telling us about the evils of e-cigarettes, said the director in his Q&A; while in the film, he points out that US federal funds were being illegally used for lobbying activities. The American Lung Association had deceived the public, too, notes Biebert, who told the audience, ‘If you get powerful charities on side, you can do anything.’ The increasing restrictions on e-cigarettes in the US, the subject of federal lawsuits, was equated to ‘Prohibition II’.
Dr Marewa Glover of End Smoking NZ, who introduced the film at its première, said that young people were using e-cigarettes as a way round peer pressure, when people in their circle smoked.
However, Australia has already banned e-cigarettes, with one interviewee, Vince, who sold them, telling a story about being raided by authorities and now faces losing his home as he fought the government on principle. He believed firmly he was saving lives. There are massive fines for vaping in Brunei and Hong Kong. There were restrictions in New Zealand, too, noted Glover, although those who sought to misinform were technically in breach of the country’s health legislation.
Biebert says he is neither a smoker nor a vaper; but all good documentary-makers, he had a commitment to get the right information out there. He acknowledges that vapers have not given themselves the best image, either, and that A Billion Lives can only be one small part of getting the truth out.
‘We need to cut the head off the monster,’ said Biebert, ‘and the monster is being funded by big business. We need more than the movie. People need to get the right information.’
He added, ‘The truth ends up winning. Even condoms were illegal in the US at one time.’
A Billion Lives will begin making its way to other countries. The website is at abillionlives.com, while the movie’s Instagram is at abillionlivesfilm.
You can watch the film here – A Billion Lives Movie

E-cigarettes safer than smoking says long-term study.

E-cigarettes are far less toxic and safer to use compared to conventional cigarettes, according to research* published in Annals of Internal Medicine today (Monday the 6th of February 2017).

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“This study adds to growing evidence that e-cigarettes are a much safer alternative to tobacco, and suggests the long term effects of these products will be minimal.”

Alison Cox, Cancer Research UK

Cancer Research UK-funded scientists found that people who swapped smoking regular cigarettes for e-cigarettes or nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) for at least six months, had much lower levels of toxic and cancer causing substances in their body than people who continued to use conventional cigarettes.

For the first time, researchers analysed the saliva and urine of long-term e-cigarette and NRT users, as well as smokers, and compared body-level exposure to key chemicals.**

Ex-smokers who switched to e-cigarettes or NRT had significantly lower levels of toxic chemicals and carcinogens*** in their body compared to people who continued to smoke tobacco cigarettes. But, those who used e-cigarettes or NRT while continuing to smoke, did not show the same marked differences, highlighting that a complete switch is needed to reduce exposure to toxins.

Dr Lion Shahab, senior lecturer in the department of epidemiology and public health at UCL, and lead author of the publication, said: “Our study adds to existing evidence showing that e-cigarettes and NRT are far safer than smoking, and suggests that there is a very low risk associated with their long-term use.

“We’ve shown that the levels of toxic chemicals in the body from e-cigarettes are considerably lower than suggested in previous studies using simulated experiments. This means some doubts about the safety of e-cigarettes may be wrong.

“Our results also suggest that while e-cigarettes are not only safer, the amount of nicotine they provide is not noticeably different to conventional cigarettes. This can help people to stop smoking altogether by dealing with their cravings in a safer way.”

Alison Cox, Cancer Research UK’s director of cancer prevention, said: “Around a third of tobacco-caused deaths are due to cancer, so we want to see many more of the UK’s 10 million smokers break their addiction.”

“This study adds to growing evidence that e-cigarettes are a much safer alternative to tobacco, and suggests the long term effects of these products will be minimal.

“Understanding and communicating the benefits of nicotine replacements, such as e-cigarettes, is an important step towards reducing the number of tobacco-related deaths here in the UK.”

Source: Press Release – Cancer Research UK

References
*Lion Shahab, L., Goniewicz, M, L., PhD; Blount, B, C., Brown, J., McNeill, A., Alwis, K, U., Feng, J., Wang, L., & West, R. Nicotine, carcinogen, and toxin exposure in long-term e-cigarette and nicotine replacement therapy users: a cross-sectional study. Annals of Internal Medicine. doi:10.7326/M16-1107

Notes to Editor

**Previous research into the toxicity of e-cigarettes has focused on assessing concentrations of potentially harmful chemicals within the products themselves, or the vapor they produce.***Levels of TSNAs (tobacco-specific nitrosamines) and VOCs (volatile organic compounds) metabolites were examined – these compounds have well-established smoking-related toxicological and carcinogenic risks.

Vaping is ‘97% Safer’ than smoking, say health experts.

First long-term study of vaping effects show fewer toxins compared to normal cigarettes.

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Vaping has been given an emphatic thumbs up by health experts after the first long-term study of its effects in ex-smokers. After six months, people who switched from real to e-cigarettes had far fewer toxins and cancer-causing substances in their bodies than continual smokers, scientists found.

Nicotine patches also appeared to be far safer than tobacco products, according to the analysis of saliva and urine samples. Experts hope the findings will reassure would-be quitters who have been confused by mixed messages about the safety of e-cigarettes.

Some previous studies suggesting that vaping is as harmful as smoking have little in common with real-world experience, it is claimed.

The new findings also show that to be safe it is necessary for smokers to switch over completely to e-cigarettes or nicotine replacement therapy (NRT).

Study participants who failed to make a clean break still had significant amounts of tobacco-related toxins in their saliva and urine.

Lead author Dr Lion Shahab, from University College London, said: “Our study adds to existing evidence showing that e-cigarettes and NRT are far safer than smoking, and suggests that there is a very low risk associated with their long-term use.

“We’ve shown that the levels of toxic chemicals in the body from e-cigarettes are considerably lower than suggested in previous studies using simulated experiments. This means some doubts about the safety of e-cigarettes may be wrong.

Comment below with your thoughts on this research that has now been published. What do you think with this new insight and do you think it will have an influence on legislation in the future and help change peoples views on vaping?

Source: The Irish Times

VAPING IS SAFE… NO BUTS! Vaping is dubbed ‘very low risk’ and less toxic than tobacco in the first major study into e-cigarettes and vaping.

Experts warned two in three smokers ‘wrongly’ thought e-cigarettes were just as harmful than tobacco.

VAPING has been found to be “very low risk” in a study of its effects on ex-smokers.

The British research says the devices are far less toxic than cigarettes.

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A study has found that the effects of vaping has shown to be far less toxic than traditional cigarettes.

Researchers at the University College of London found that levels of cancer-causing toxins fell by up to 97 per cent in those who vape within six months after they switched from cigarettes.

But those who continued to use both saw no benefit.

The study of 181 people found using the devices was as beneficial for health as taking up nicotine replacement therapy.

A man taps ashes off his cigarette into an ashtray filled with cigarette butts on a table in Ljubljana

Experts have warned that two in three smokers ‘wrongly’ thought e-cigarettes were just as harmful as tobacco.

Researcher Dr Lion Shahab said: “Our study shows that e-cigarettes and nicotine-replacement therapies are far safer than smoking, and suggests that there is a very low risk associated with their long-term use.”

Alison Cox, of Cancer Research UK, said: “This adds to growing evidence that e-cigarettes and vaping products are a safer alternative to tobacco and suggests that long-term effects will be minimal.”

About 2.2 million regularly used e-cigs in 2015.

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