Governments around the world, wealthy “philanthropists,” misguided activists and a few others are waging a war against the wrong enemy. For decades, the war on nicotine has been a terribly unsuccessful exercise in futility – because the problem was never nicotine. So-called experts, media and politicians found a simple argument and a convenient scapegoat for an incredibly complex problem. They failed to prevent, as such, the deaths of millions of people around the world. And they persist in their thinking to the detriment of 1.1 billion people.
A seventh of the world population smokes. A small part of them will eventually stop smoking “cold turkey”. For the rest, there are a number of options. In the last decade or so, vaping has come up to be the most efficient way to quit smoking. It retains the “familiarity” of the ritual of smoking, without 95% of the harm of smoking. For many, it has been a stepping stone from a very unhealthy habit to life without cigarettes. For some people, this is one of the most important changes in their lives.
Yet vaping has been under a constant and virulent attack from all sides. Despite the millions of people who have failed to quit through traditional methods, but managed by vaping – it seems governments and politicians and some public health experts have been fooled into believing a narrative that makes absolutely no sense: since there’s nicotine in vaping, then it should be treated the same as cigarettes. But wait, there’s nicotine in nicotine gum and nicotine patches, and they’re not treated like cigarettes? They’re celebrated! They are prescribed and recommended as a first step to quitting. And as many studies have shown they are the most likely to fail.
So why is then the nicotine in vaping considered “different” to the nicotine in gums or patches? We wanted to put to sleep some myths, so together with the Consumer Choice Center, we co-authored a paper on the top 6 myths about nicotine. We have a hope that this will help to end the pointless and senseless war on nicotine and on vaping in general.
We look at six main reasons why the war on nicotine is pointless, has had no effect and ignores science.
The anti-vaping discourse is riddled with double standards about nicotine. If we are to be consistent about nicotine, we have to treat vaping with the same openness and encouragement as nicotine replacement therapy, such as patches. Due to innovation nicotine consumption can finally be decoupled from the hazardous effects of smoking and therefore help millions of smokers to improve their health.