Sorry guys, if you thought e-cigarettes—more popularly known as vapes—are a healthier and safer alternative to tobacco cigarettes, you are wrong.
In a recent report released by the Department of Health (DOH), Secretary Paulyn Ubial confirmed that vapes contain about 7,000 dangerous chemicals, much like a normal cigarette stick.
“May advisory ang FDA na iyong components na nasa vapes is still tobacco. Ngayon, ang sinasabi nila, it is a safer alternative. Pero ang sinasabi namin sa health sector, walang safe level ng exposure to tobacco smoke. So maski konti lang yan, it's still unsafe,” she said in a statement.
Ubial also advised the youth to avoid tobacco products, as a 2015 Global Youth Tobacco Survey claimed there had been a whopping 2 to 3 percent increase of tobacco users among teenagers aged 13 to 15 years old.
Several international studies have also confirmed the dangers to smoking e-cigarettes.
In a recent study titled Stanford Research Into the Impact of Tobacco Advertising, by Stanford University School of Medicine, Principal Investigator Robert K. Jackler, M.D., concluded that vapes also produce carcinogens, which may lead to serious lung diseases.
“There is nothing natural about deeply inhaling a mist of propylene glycol and/or glycerin deeply into the lungs on a daily basis for years," Jackler explains. "The vaporization process involves a heating element which, especially in higher-powered advanced vaporizers, produces formaldehyde—a known carcinogen."
He further adds: “Almost all e-juice flavors contain aldehydes, ketones, and natural extracts, which are felt to be safe when ingested. Nevertheless, the toxicity spectrum of the lung is very different from that of the gut. Many flavors, especially sweet and creamy flavors, contain diacetyl compounds which, when inhaled, are known to be a cause of serious lung disease among flavor manufacturing workers.”
Although Executive Order (EO) No. 26, also known as “Nationwide Smoking Ban On Public Places,” doesn’t include e-cigarettes, the DOH is encouraging local government units to still prohibit smoking vapes in public places like schools, workplaces, sidewalks, and even in jeepneys, buses, and tricycles.
Ubial said that EO will officially take effect on July 16.