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These days, electronic cigarettes are rarely outside the news. As you’re probably aware, the press often don’t have a nice word to say about these revolutionary devices. However, most of these articles are written by journalists – not health professionals – and often use suspect sources to support their shaky arguments.
To help you cut through the negative stories and get to the truth, here are what 10 bonafide health experts have to say about e-cigarettes. So sit back, grab a cup of tea and get ready to discover why millions of smokers worldwide have made the switch to a much healthier hit of nicotine.
- Professor Peter Hajek
Peter Hajek is a British psychologist who works at Queen Mary University of London. At the university, he works as the professor of clinical psychology and director of the Wolfson Institute of Preventive Medicine’s Tobacco Dependence Research Unit. Hajek has won acclaim for his research into quitting smoking, which includes comprehensive studies into treatments such as nicotine nasal spray and lozenges.
On the King’s College London blog, Professor Peter Hajek had this to say about electronic cigarettes:
“There are currently two products competing for smokers’ custom. One, the conventional cigarette, endangers users and bystanders and recruits new customers from among non-smoking children who try it. The other, e-cigarette, is orders of magnitude safer, poses no risk to bystanders, and generates negligible rates of regular use among non-smoking children who try it.”
- Professor Robert West
Robert West is professor of health psychology and director of tobacco studies at the Cancer Research UK Health Behaviour Research Centre, University College London. Previously, he worked for the NHS as an advisor to the Department of Health Tobacco Policy Team.
When speaking to The Guardian in 2013, Professor Robert West had this to say about electronic cigarettes:
“We have such a massive opportunity here. It would be a shame to let it slip away by being overly cautious. E-cigarettes are about as safe as you can get. We know about the health risks of nicotine from studies in Sweden into the use of “Snus”, a smokeless tobacco. Nicotine is not what kills you when you smoke tobacco. E-cigarettes are probably about as safe as drinking coffee. All they contain is water vapour, nicotine and propylene glycol [which is used to help vaporise the liquid nicotine].”
- Professor John Britton
Professor John Britton teaches at the University of Nottingham in the area of epidemiology, public health and tobacco policy. He is also the director of the UK Centre for Tobacco and Alcohol Studies (UKCTAS) – a network of tobacco and alcohol research groups. The professor specialises in smoking prevention and avoidable causes of chronic respiratory diseases.
When speaking to the BBC, Professor John Britton had this to say about electronic cigarettes:
“If all the smokers in Britain stopped smoking cigarettes and started smoking e-cigarettes, we would save 5 million deaths in people who are alive today. It’s a massive potential public health prize.”
- Dr Murray Laugesen
Dr Murray Laugesen is New Zealand’s most experienced researcher on cigarettes and smoking policy. Among his many career highlights, he founded Health New Zealand Ltd and worked as the principal medical officer for the Department of Health in his home country.
In a recent row over a far-reaching report that criticised e-cigarettes, Dr Murray Laugesen had this to say:
“[People] are not going to die from an e-cigarette – but they could die tomorrow from a heart attack due to their smoking. The carcinogens that we have found are in very, very small quantities, just above the level of detection.”
- Dr Konstantinos Farsalinos
Dr Konstantinos Farsalinos is a cardiologist and, arguably, electronic cigarette’s loudest supporting voice. He was the first person to study the impact of electronic cigarette usage on the heart and has since published many studies and papers championing their benefits.
At the E-cigarette Summit in London 2014, Dr Konstantinos Farsalinos had this to say:
“The most important toxins in cigarette smoke are missing – those that remain are orders of magnitude lower. Risk reduction of e-cigs is at least 95%, and probably 99.”
- Dr Jean-François Etter
Professor Jean-François Etter works at the University of Geneva, Switzerland. As an internationally renowned expert on the subject, he has published research that has shaped our wider understanding of e-cigarette usage. He also boasts over 18 years’ experience of conducting studies into smoking prevention research.
In a recent interview, Dr Jean-François Etter had this to say about electronic cigarettes:
“Even if there are long-term vapers, this is not a problem, as long as they quit smoking. The problem is combusted tobacco, not nicotine. At the dosage used by vapers or users of nicotine gums or patches, nicotine is not toxic. Long term vaping is not a public health problem; not any more than long term use of nicotine gums.”
- Dr Joel Nitzkin
Dr Joel Nitzkin is chair of the Tobacco Control Task Force for the American Association of Public Health Physicians. Since the early 1970s, Dr Joel Nitzkin has been a crucial innovator in public health and healthcare administration in the US.
Here’s what he had to say in a recent interview about electronic cigarettes:
“We have every reason to believe that the hazard posed by e-cigarettes would be much lower than one percent, probably lower than one tenth of one percent of the hazard posed by regular cigarettes.
If we get all tobacco smokers to switch from regular cigarettes to electronic cigarettes, we would eventually reduce the US death toll from more than 400,000 a year to less than 4,000, maybe as low as 400.”
- Professor Brad Rodu
Brad Rodu is a professor of medicine at the University of Louisville in Kentucky. He is also a senior scientist at James Graham Brown Cancer Centre. Professor Rodu’s background is primarily in dentistry and oral pathology – however, he is also responsible for a large body of research into tobacco harm reduction.
In a paper published by the Harm Reduction Journal, Professor Brad Rodu wrote this about electronic cigarettes:
“E-cigs might be the most promising product for tobacco harm reduction to date, because, besides delivering nicotine vapour without the combustion products that are responsible for nearly all of smoking’s damaging effect, they also replace some of the rituals associated with smoking behaviour.”
- Dr Gilbert Ross
Dr Gilbert Ross is the Senior Director of Medicine and Public Health at the American Council on Science and Health (ACSH). As a consequence of his position, he has written or co-written hundreds of publications that span a wide-range of public health-based topics.
On the online magazine for the American Enterprise Institute, Dr Gilbert Ross wrote this about electronic cigarettes:
“Prohibiting the safest form of nicotine delivery will increase, not stem, cigarette-related deaths. Truly informing smokers about reduced-risk nicotine products, such as e-cigarettes and smokeless tobacco, and increasing access to these products is a good way to save millions of lives.”
- Professor Peter Killeen
Peter Killeen is a professor of psychology at Arizona State University. In addition, he is Fellow of the Society of Experimental Psychologists and has also won a Senior Scientist Award from the National Institute of Mental Health. Primarily, Peter Killeen specialises in the field of behavioural neuroscience.
In a video by United Vapers Network published on YouTube, Professor Peter Killeen had this to say about e-cigarettes:
“If you could switch from cigarettes to vaping, there’s no evidence in the world right now that say’s this wouldn’t be better for your health, there’s an awful lot of evidence that suggests it would be better for your health.”
If you want to swap traditional cigarettes for a healthier hit of nicotine, take a look at our range of iCig Electronic Cigarette Starter Kits. These easy to use e-cigarette starter kits include everything you’ll need to start vaping today – including an e-cig, charger, case and refill cartridges.
Alternatively, if you want to learn more about making the switch to electronic cigarettes, check out our guide: To Vape or Not To Vape? Investigating the Benefits of Electronic Cigarettes.