The first electronic cigarette was patented by Herbert A. Gilbert in 1963. Although not as stream-lined as today's models, it was the start of an e-volution, The Smokeless Cigarette. However, it was Hon Lik, a Chinese pharmacist, who is credited with the first generation of what we know now as the electronic cigarette.
Simply put, the electronic cigarette (the e-cig, or eCig) allows the user to enjoy smoking without actually smoking. Instead of burning tobacco, with all of its accompanying toxins, chemicals, and smelly side-effects, the user puffs and inhales a vapor which delivers the nicotine, and gives the satisfaction of smoking, while not really smoking, i.e., the user of the eCig does not smoke but vapes. That is, you inhale a water vapor, instead of toxic smoke.
Today's electronic cigarettes is based upon simple technology, by modern standards. The e-cig typically consists of these components . . .
- a lithium ion battery
- an atomizer (small heating element)
- small microchip to control the vaporizing process
- a cartridge with wadding to hold the e-juice, or a tank filled with e-liquid.
The eCig gives the smoker of regular tobacco cigarettes (analog cigarettes) a great alternative to enjoying the act of smoking, without pumping their lungs full of the dangerous chemicals and toxins associated with smoking. In other words, with the eCig, you are not going to get the 599 additives or the thousands of chemicals produced by burning the tobacco.
[download the full list of the 599 additives HERE]
The cartridges for the eCig come in two different types, pre-filled and empty. The pre-filled is typically equivalent to about a pack of regular cigarettes. This can vary depending upon the habit of the individual smoker (you could get more or less, depending upon how heavy a smoker you are). The empty cartridges can be filled by the user from a small bottle of e-Liquid. This is probably the most cost-effective method.
Which ever method may be right for you, will depend on you and your own personal smoking habits. But regardless, you will soon see the benefits of vaping, instead of smoking. Most vapers love the fact, that they no longer smell like cigarettes (your clothes, hair, hands, breath, etc.).
Also one of the benefits we haven't even mentioned yet, is that you can vape where smoking is not allowed. Imagine just finishing your meal in your favorite restaurant. You sit back, pull out your eCig and start puffing. You start getting stares and looks like, "Can you believe this guy! Lighting up right here in the restaurant!". Then the people around you realize that they don't smell burning tobacco. The restaurant manager comes over to your table and asks you what you are doing. You tell him that your vaping, not smoking. No one around you is getting that dreaded second-hand smoke. How cool is that!
Electronic Cigarettes may not be for everyone. Hardcore smokers (2 or more packs a day) may find the transition to eCigs difficult. However, with your health and life on the line here, don't you think you owe it to yourself and those you love to give it try. Even if it helps you cut down the amount you smoke, any reduction is a victory.
If the eCig is so great, then why have the powers that be not jumped on the bandwagon? The answer to that simple question could be the topic of a whole other page. However, to give the short answer, there are two giant industries that stand to lose money if the eCig really ever caught on, namely the multi-billion dollar industries of the Giant Tobacco Producers, and Big Pharma. They both have a stake in seeing that the eCig eVolution never gains ground. However, as I said, the deep reasons go far beyond the $$$, but that's a good start.
Not Included In Your eCigarette
As great as the electronic cigarette may be, there are some features that you are not going to get.
Namely, you will not get the 599 chemicals that the major tobacco companies put in their cigarettes. And since these chemicals are missing, you are also going to miss out on the 5000 chemical compounds that are created by burning a cigarette, many of which are toxic and/or carcinogenic.
We think that after careful consideration of the facts, you won't mind that these have been left out.
Electronic cigarettes are basically a nicotine delivery system without all the toxins and cancer-causing agents. Nicotine is addictive. We don't need to tell you that. But it is not the nicotine that is so deadly in cigarettes. It is the 5000 compounds that get you. It is the nicotine that keeps you coming back for more toxins.
So if you could get the nicotine satisfaction, without the toxic additives, that would be much better for your overall health. Of course the best remedy would be to get off the nicotine ride altogether. It is possible that the electronic cigarette can also help with that if used in the right way. What is the right way? Simply decrease the amount of nicotine in your vaping juice over time. But that is up to you, of course.
Why Do The Tobacco Companies Put All These Chemicals In Their Cigarettes And What Are They?
The logic of putting all these toxic chemicals into the cigarette by the major tobacco companies are stated for taste and burning ability.
However, why do we need the almost 5,000 generated chemicals to make the tobacco in cigarettes to taste and burn better? This question has not been satifactorily answered. But what we do know is that up to 70 of these added chemicals are known carcinogins and irritants.
I've been throwing some numbers around that may be confusing, so let's clear it up. The tobacco companies admittedly add up to 599 chemicals to their cigarettes. When you light up a cigarette, you begin the process of burning these 599 chemicals. When these chemicals are burned, they can produce up to 5,000 different compounds, upwards of 70 are carcinogenic (cancer-causing). Does that help?
The following table lists only a few of the included toxins in that cigarette your smoking and which are not included in the electronic cigarette.
|Acetone - A flammable, colorless liquid used as a solvent. It's one of the active ingredients in nail polish remover. The tobacco industry refuses to say how acetone gets into cigarettes.|
|Ammonia - A colorless, pungent gas. The tobacco industry says that it adds flavor, but scientists have discovered that ammonia helps you absorb more nicotine - keeping you hooked on smoking.|
|Arsenic - A silvery-white very poisonous chemical element. This deadly poison is used to make insecticides, and it is also used to kill gophers and rats.|
|Benzene - A flammable liquid obtained from coal tar and used as a solvent. This cancer-causing chemical is used to make everything from pesticides to detergent to gasoline.|
|Turpentine - A colorless volatile oil. Turpentine is very toxic and is commonly used as a paint thinner.|
|Benzoapyrene - A yellow crystalline carcinogenic hydrocarbon found in coal tar and cigarette smoke. It's one of the most potent cancer-causing chemicals in the world.|
|Butane - A hydrocarbon used as a fuel. Highly flammable butane is one of the key ingredients in gasoline.|
|Cadmium - A metallic chemical element used in alloys. This toxic metal causes damage to the liver, kidneys, and the brain; and stays in your body for years.|
|Formaldehyde - A colorless pungent gas used in solution as a disinfectant and preservative. It causes cancer; damages your lungs, skin and digestive system. Embalmers use it to preserve dead bodies.|
|Lead - A heavy bluish-gray metallic chemical element. This toxic heavy metal causes lead poisoning, which stunts your growth, and damages your brain. It can easily kill you.|
Download PDF file of the full list of the 599 chemicals known to be in major tobacco companies cigarettes HERE