The FDA has announced plans for cutting the nicotine contained in cigarettes, while at the same leaving e-cigarettes mainly unregulated.
Plans were announced today by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to delay reviewing e-cigarettes for safety that are currently on the market. For e-cig manufacturers this is a big win. The agency also stated it is intending on looking into cutting levels of nicotine within regular cigarettes to what it is calling non-addictive levels.
Public health experts have mixed feelings about this move. Cutting the level of nicotine in cigarettes could help with curbing addiction and saving lives. And e-cigarettes, which first heat and then vaporize liquids which frequently contain nicotine and flavors are usually considered to be not as dangerous as cigarettes. However, they are not completely harmless either. Since vaping is a fairly new phenomenon click here, we still are not sure what the long terms effects from them will be. Given that vaping is a fairly new phenomenon, its long term effects are still not known. And with e-cigarette maker still being largely unregulated, consumers are left in the dark when it comes to knowing precisely what they are inhaling.
For over 20 years now, scientists have pushed the FDA on limiting the levels of nicotine in cigarettes. Although the FDA is not allowed to require cigarette manufacturers to make cigarettes that don’t contain any nicotine, a maximum level has been set by the agency that is permitted. In order to make cigarettes non-addictive- or substantially less addictive at least- Eric Donny from the University of Pittsburgh says that nicotine content needs to be cut by around 85 to 95 percent.
These are distinct from “light” brands of cigarettes from the 1970s. “Light” cigarettes contained typical nicotine and tar levels, however they were made in such a way that the nicotine and tar that they emitted became diluted with air - which tricked the machines that measure them so they registered inaccurate low levels. Denicotinized or reduced nicotine cigarettes, on the other hand, contain less nicotine to start out with, according to a Tobacco Control 2015 review. There was a six week study that found that individuals end up smoking less reduced-nicotine cigarettes and also stated that they wanted them less. However, according to Donny, it could also driver smokers towards other nicotine sources, such as the broad array of vape pens and e-cigs that are now available visit best portable vaporizers for a list of the top vapes.
Not every e-cigarette contains nicotine. Also it has been shown that vaping helps individuals with quitting smoking. However, since e-cigs are mostly unregulated, it is virtually impossible knowing what chemicals are contained in them. It has been found that some of the chemicals are cancer-causing and that vaping could place smoker at high risk for heart disease, similar to regular cigarettes.
It might be that e-cigarettes are less addictive as well as less dangerous for cancer, however that doesn’t mean that vaping is safe, according to professor Stanton Glantz from the University of California San Francisco who is studying the effects of nicotine and tobacco. Glantz says that he thinks the FDA is being too optimistic about public health benefits to pushing individuals to switch over to e-cigarettes. A real problem is if individuals switch over them thinking they are safe.
A deadline was given to vape pen and e-cig makers by the FDA last summer: bu the end of 2018 or so, manufacturers need to submit any products of theirs that were introduced into the market after 2007 so that the FDA can review them. However, this deadline has been pushed to 2022. This four year extension is giving extra time to the FDA for coming up with new standards for preventing things such as products exploding in individual’s faces. However, it also makes it possible for potentially dangerous products to remain in the market for adults and children - to use.
The plans are not completely set in stone yet. It could take years for the process to finalize the measures to take place. Also, the FED will need to evaluate input received from the tobacco industry, from experts and from the public. However, today’s announcement is the initial step towards instituting a tobacco regulation strategy stating that some of the current nicotine delivery systems are considered to be more dangerous compared to others. For public health, it is a big win to reduce the nicotine levels contained in cigarettes. However, extending how long unregulated e-cigarettes can remain on the market is a big loss for individuals who like using them. Without really knowing what is actually contained inside of them, how can consumer know if they are placing themselves at risk or not?