In recent years, increasing numbers of former smokers are switching to vaping in an attempt to quit the habit permanently. Research has shown that e-cigarettes are much safer than traditional tobacco cigarettes as they do not contain as many harmful chemicals and substances, and therefore represent a healthier alternative for those who have had no success with the other methods of stopping smoking. However, is it possible for vaping to actually reverse some of the health problems that have already been caused by smoking? Recent evidence has revealed that this may well be the case. A leading name in the area of clinical bronchoprovocation, Dr Riccardo Polosa MD PhD, who is an expert in tobacco addiction and respiratory medicine, has been studying the effects of e-cigarettes and promoting their benefits as an effective tool for stopping smoking. His recent study into the effect of vaping on ex-smokers who are currently suffering from hypertension and asthma as a result of their former habit has produced some interesting and positive results. Here, we take a look at this exciting research and how it can benefit smokers.
Improvements In Medical Problems After Vaping
The individuals involved in Dr Polosa’s study had reduced their consumption of standard tobacco cigarettes after switching to vaping, and significant improvements in their health was observed. In those patients who were already suffering from smoking-related asthma, their respiratory symptoms reduced and their lung function improved drastically after just six months of making the change. These improvements continued to persist for as long as two years after changing to vaping. In those patients who had been diagnosed with high blood pressure (hypertension) while still smoking traditional cigarettes, after 6 months of having changed to e-cigarettes, their diastolic and systolic blood pressures were both noticeably reduced. Interestingly, the improvements in the study subjects’ health was not only observed in those who had completely switched over from tobacco to e-cigs but also in those who had partially switched to vaping and had cut down their tobacco cigarette intake. Although the progress was not as marked in dual users, those who suffered from asthma still experienced fewer attacks, had improved control of their symptoms and enjoyed a better quality of sleep, while those who suffered from high blood pressure discovered that they were less anxious and more relaxed, resulting in lower BP recordings.
How Do E-Cigarettes Help To Reduce Medical Problems?
These improvements are believed to be not just as a result of decreasing the amount of tobacco cigarettes smoked, but also because of the behavioural and ritualistic components that are linked with vaping. One of the problems that is commonly associated with quitting smoking via most traditional methods including going cold turkey is increased levels of anxiety, which in turn causes high blood pressure. When smokers switch to vaping, anxiety is not a factor and therefore blood pressure levels tend to remain normal. Another health problem associated with quitting smoking via the cold turkey method is excessive weight gain. Nicotine is an appetite suppressant and also acts to boost the metabolism, so when this element is taken away ex-smokers face cravings and are tempted to eat more, resulting in the pounds piling on. Excessive weight gain is linked to a host of medical problems including diabetes, heart disease, strokes, cancer, osteoarthritis and gallstones, and therefore when an ex-smoker switches to vaping instead of going cold turkey, they can avoid the problems associated with the weight gain that generally occur after quitting the habit.
What Are The Next Steps In Vaping Research?
Having achieved such positive results through his current study, Professor Polosa is now looking to the future and planning further studies into the effects of vaping upon ex-smokers’ health. The next step is to look into how vaping impacts upon those patients who are suffering from a range of other smoking related problems including diabetes and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD). Dr Polosa also believes that the other problems that are worth investigating include neurodegenerative disorders such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s and other psychological illnesses. He also thinks that it is worthwhile to re-evaluate vaping as a possible means of administering medical products in a more effective manner.