Though this might seem somewhat obvious, a survey of 80 studies on e-cigarettes released yesterday showed that e-cigs are are much less harmful to smokers and people inhaling secondhand smoke than cigarettes - and they might be a good way to quit smoking.
“Health professionals may consider advising smokers unable or unwilling to quit through other routes to switch to [e-cigarettes] as a safer alternative to smoking and a possible pathway to complete cessation of nicotine use,” researchers wrote in the study, published in the journal Addiction.
Anecdotal evidence exists (indeed, abounds) about the benefits of e-cigarettes for helping people kick smoking. The fear that many health officials have, though, remains in the availability of e-cigs to children who could get hooked on nicotine at an early age.
Many cities like New York and Chicago have passed measures that would limit the use of e-cigarettes to the same standards as tobacco smoke - i.e. not in public places, airplanes or restaurants. As the evidence stacks up to their benefit, will public health officials reconsider their stance?