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New Poll: Nearly half of Brits (and Americans, too) still believe vaping is just as deadly as smoking

Public Health England (PHE) is on a mission to educate the approximate 44 percent of British smokers who still mistakenly believe that vaping and smoking are equally as dangerous to one’s health.  To dispel this myth, PHE officials recently released a rather startling video in an attempt to further inspire people to quit smoking and switch to vaping. 

The film is going viral and features public health experts Dr. Lion Shahab and Dr. Rosemary Leonard performing an experiment involving three bell jars of cotton balls.  They began by pumping the smoke from combustible cigarettes into one jar and the vapor from electronic cigarettes into another. They then compared the resulting discoloration effects to the third jar representing the lungs and respiratory system of a typical non-smoker/non-vaper. 

Related Article:  In case you missed it: Disturbing video shows contrast between smoking vs. vaping

The results are truly disturbing.  The cotton balls inside the smokers’ jar became saturated with a thick, gooey, tar-like substance.  Even the connecting tube and the insides of the jar were drenched in the disgusting concoction 

Conversely, the cotton balls within the vapers’ jar remained relatively residue-free.  Only a slight discoloration was evident after placing the vapers’ jar directly next to the third jar representing the lungs of a non-smoker.    

Research indicates most Americans are also misinformed

British smokers are not alone in their misguided assumptions about vaping.  In early 2018, a similar poll conducted in the United States produced comparable findings.   Performed by a team of scientists from Virginia Tech,  the study’s lead author Karen K. Gerlach determined that most Americans have no idea that nicotine does not cause cancer and that combustible tobacco is the truly deadly culprit.

Consequently, the researchers further discovered that about 53 percent of the U.S. population – smokers and non-smokers combined – wrongly believe that smoking is just as dangerous to public health as smoking.  Ms. Gerlach stated that these misperceptions “need to be addressed with clear communications to the public—especially smokers—that nicotine is not what is causing smoking-related disease.”

Related Article:  53% of Americans mistakenly think nicotine is carcinogenic, says new study

Unfortunately, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration does not appear to be listening to Ms. Gerlach’s advice.  Since the publication of the Virginia Tech study, FDA officials have been aggressively waging war against electronic cigarettes while simultaneously avoiding the scientific distinctions between the vaping of tobacco-free, nicotine-enhanced e-liquids versus the smoking of highly carcinogenic and chemical-laden combustible tobacco products.

The only similarity that vaping and smoking share is that they both involve nicotine consumption.  And even this argument is flawed because e-liquids used in vapor products contain substantially less nicotine compared to its convention tobacco cigarette counterpart.

British PHE official claims misinformation campaigns about vaping are ‘tragic’

It’s not just Americans who hear and believe this anti-vaping nonsense of the FDA.  The Brits fall victim to these sorts of FDA-sponsored lies and half-truths as they spread across the world via social media.  PHE’s Director for Health Improvement John Newton calls the resulting public confusion about the vaping potentially “tragic.”

"It would be tragic if thousands of smokers who could quit with the help of an e-cigarette are being put off due to false fears about safety…We need to reassure smokers that switching to an e-cigarette would be much less harmful than smoking.”

Dr. Newton is hopeful that the grotesque imagery of the PHE film will encourage smokers to quit.  The public health organization is also once again promoting its 2015 groundbreaking research indicating that vaping is approximately 95 percent less harmful than smoking. 

Related Article:  OSU research study: Americans 35 and younger view e-cigs as safe

(Image courtesy of Shutterstock)

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