It seems that everything we buy these days has been revamped in some way. Our cereal has less sugar, our cheese has less fat, our juice has more vitamins, what about our cigarettes? Cigarettes have never been the healthiest item on our shopping list, should we try and make them healthier? It wouldn’t be the first such attempt, there are herbal cigarettes on the markets, as well as E-Cigs aimed at maintaining the elements of cool without the element of danger. Now it seems the FDA is stepping in with its own attempt at making cigarettes healthier. Could this be a show of some much needed serious muscle? Here’s a look at reduced nicotine cigarettes and their long term implications.
There is reduced fat, we reduced calories, why not reduce nicotine?The US Food and Drug Administration is aiming to lower the nicotine content in cigarettes in the years to come in an effort that health officials believe may reduce the amount of tobacco related disease and illness.
The FDA announced the plan targeting nicotine as an ingredient responsible for causing dependence and health complications, and hope that lowering the nicotine levels in cigarettes will lead to a decrease in dependence on cigarettes, and lower the rates of tobacco related disease.
Less Nicotine Means Less Addiction
FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb explains the move. “The overwhelming amount of death and disease attributable to tobacco is caused by the addiction to cigarettes, the only legal consumer product that, when used as intended, will kill half of all long term users. Unless we change course, 5.6 million young people alive today will prematurely die later in life from tobacco use. Envisioning the world where cigarettes would no longer create or sustain addiction, and where adults who still need or want nicotine could get it from alternative and less harmful sources needs to be the cornerstone of our efforts-and we believe it’s vital that we pursue this common ground.”
Although the change will effect people of all ages, the FDA notes a particular focus on young people. Most people begin the smoking habit before the age of 18, it is especially crucial that the lowering of nicotine levels in cigarettes prevent a dependance on cigarettes from forming at an early age and lasting into later life.
The Facts On Tobacco
On the bright side, it seems that some of the anti tobacco strategies seem to be working. Tobacco has reached all time lows in teens and adults. However, it still remains the leading cause of preventable death in the United States, resulting in 480,000 deaths a year. The Centers for Disease Control Prevention blame smoking as a cause of cancer, diabetes, heart and lung disease, stoke and chronic obstructive pulmonary diseases, such as chronic bronchitis and emphysema. The FDA believes and hope reducing the level of nicotine in cigarettes will be an effective way in reduction dependence.
What’s your take? Do you think this new strategy can work? Let us know what you think of the kinder, gentler cigarette.