Wednesday, September 2, 2009

FDA Warns Against E-Cigarettes

In July, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) warned consumers about the use of e-cigarettes because they contain chemicals harmful to humans. E-cigarettes have become popular within the last couple years as a 'safer' alternative to cigarettes and are being sold online and in shopping malls. Through analysis of their ingredients the FDA has found that the e-cigarettes have traces of diethylene glycol, a chemical used in antifreeze that is toxic to humans, and in several other samples, the FDA analyses detected carcinogens, including nitrosamines. E-cigarettes also contain nicotine, the addictive substance found in traditional tobacco products. These new electronic cigarettes could increase a persons addiction to nicotine and could lead to addiction in young people.

The FDA is looking into regulating or banning these products because they do not contain health warnings found on cigarettes and because they contain harmful chemicals. Currently there is a pending lawsuit in Oregon against a Florida e-cigarette maker claiming that they target children with their fruit and other flavorings. The countries of Hong Kong and Finland have banned them outright and Canada is halted all sales until further testing is complete.

It will be interesting to watch what does happen with e-cigarettes whether they become banned outright or are added to the FDA's regulation of products. It can be said that all products that contain nicotine are addictive and harmful to people who use them.

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