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article imageE-Cigarettes Coming Under Fire From Health Officials

By Christine Mattice     Mar 2, 2009 in Health
If it looks like a cigarette, acts like a cigarette, and eases your nicotine cravings like a cigarette, it must be a cigarette. Right? Well…not exactly. It’s an electronic cigarette, and it's raising concerns with health officials.
The Chinese-made Ruyan V8 looks just like a regular cigarette, complete with glowing red tip and what appears to be white smoke. But there’s no tobacco in this baby. Instead, the smoker inhales a nicotine mist. Studies have shown that nicotine is the addictive agent in cigarettes, not the cancer-causing one. No burning tobacco, no problem. Right?
Well, the manufacturers think so. They are touting the Ruyan V8 as a safe alternative to tobacco cigarettes and a great way to stop smoking. Plus, there is no second-hand smoke to worry about, so you can smoke them anywhere. What could be better?
Scientific proof to their health claims, say health authorities. According to the Star Tribune:
The World Health Organization issued a statement in September warning there was no evidence to back up contentions that e-cigarettes are a safe substitute for smoking or a way to help smokers quit.
Still, a number of manufactures have jumped on the e-cigarette “bandwagon,” and are busy developing their own versions of the Ruyan V8. This concerns health officials, who fear that these products could have long-term health implications.
“There is not sufficient evidence that (they) are safe products for human consumption,” Timothy O’Leary, a communications officer for WHO, told the Star Tribune.
The WHO wants the makers of the Ruyan V8 to stop marketing them as safe alternatives to, and a good way to quit, cigarette smoking until they have scientific proof to back up these claims.
More about E-cigarettes, Ruyan, Electronic cigarettes, Cigarette smoking
 
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