Smoking has always been a controversial topic in public discourse. Everybody knows that it can be a dangerous hobby due to its potential risks of getting cardiovascular diseases and various types of cancer. Nevertheless, a lot of people smoke because it gives them a feeling of relaxation and comfort. Especially when you think of the fact that nowadays we suffer from a lot of pressure in our jobs, it becomes apparent that there is a great need for relaxation. So many of us risk the danger of getting diseases if it helps them to find some moments of peace. That does not always have to be the case. In the last few years, we have experienced a real revolution on the smoking market. That one is not supposed to be a different use of tobacco like chewing tobacco or snuff but in an entirely different way. The alternative I want to write about is the so-called electronic cigarette.

But why does its use differ so much from other sorts of smoking?

We can answer that question easy enough when we think of the way an electronic cigarette functions. First and foremost, it is crucial to know that this electronic device does not use tobacco at all. Instead, it uses a so-called e-liquid that consists of water, propylene glycol, glycerol, and a variety of different flavors depending on its sort. Nicotine, which usually is the main component of smoking, does not necessarily have to be in the liquid.

That does all sound excellent, but those of us who aren't chemists, which should be the greatest part, what are these substances at all? Of course, it would not make sense to give you the chemical formula of those and explain how they look. So we should rather focus on their practical uses. That way, we should see of what nature they are. First of all, there is propylene glycol. One of its primary uses is as an additive in animal food. Its chemical structure allows it to mix with water and vitamins perfectly and adding a sweet taste. So it also makes a good choice for human food. Especially when it comes to its sweet taste, it is trendy as a sweetening material. Possible uses in that respect could be for coffee or tea drinkers. One advantage in comparison to sugar is the fact that it does not include as many calories, which is important for many consumers nowadays. And, of course, it is non-toxic or at least you would need to consume an enormous amount of it before it could become so, which is very unlikely.

Our next substance is glycerol. That one is very flexible in usage and has found its way into many different branches in our everyday life. For example, people use it in the food industry as a sweetener and preservative. It is also a component of various pills, in which it increases the smoothness of the content better than water and also adds a small taste of sweetness. That, on the other hand, makes medications better accessible for the people who need to take it. Botanical extracts are another branch of usage for glycerol. As it is not as liquid as water and contains some elements which allow it to save flavors, for example, its sweet taste, it is a common ingredient in botanical extracts. We can undermine that fact, even more, when we think of another alternative which is also able to store flavors as good as glycerol does. That alternative is alcohol. However, that substance is not always the best choice, as we all might know because alcohol can have a huge variety of negative consequences on our body. Apart from tasting a bit sweet, glycerol does not have any other drawbacks.

So if we put together all these different features of the ingredients of e-liquids, we can see that there are no dangerous ones included. In comparison to regular tobacco, in which there are estimated to be over 50 different substances increasing the chance of getting cancer, e-liquids are a lot healthier. Especially when you use liquids which do not include nicotine, then there is nothing to worry while smoking.

What are electronic cigarettes?