New Study Reveals True Effects of Vaping

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The chemicals inhaled from vaping are expected to pose significant health risks in the future. (Diego Cervo/Getty Images)

A recent study conducted from Ireland reports that flavored vapes can produce over 100 harmful chemicals from being heated and inhaled.

Vaping products work by heating chemicals which produces a type of aerosol which is then inhaled. This study published in Scientific Reports, uses artificial intelligence to investigate how the chemicals from being heated, will affect humans. The study predicted that the vapes produce 127 acute toxins, 153 health hazards, and 225 irritants.

Using AI, O’Shea and his team are able to simulate how much the chemical composition of the 180 flavors decompose under intense temperatures. The results of the AI predictor reveal that of the 180 flavors, almost every single one was classified to be a health hazard.

“That’s the take home message, I guess, is that if you heat a chemical, it tends to turn itself into a variety of different chemicals which we should not be inhaling into our lungs,” explains Donald O’Shea, the author of this study, who is also a chemistry professor at RSCI.

“The accumulation of these toxins, even a very low dose over years, is causing at a cellular level, damage in the lungs and maybe beyond the lungs, depending upon the compound itself. So then you just have a slow build-up of damage that leads to progression to different diseases,” O’Shea explained.

Flavored vapes are quite popular, especially with non-smoking teenagers as well as young adults. The study concludes that better understanding the long-term impacts these devices have to public health, morbidity and mortality is of utmost importance.

“As vaping is a new and unprecedented stress to the human body, with the ability to generate pyrolysis products more toxic that their parent compounds, it seems prudent to strictly limit the number of chemical entities in e-liquids,” the study stated.

The UK Government has already announced that they will be banning disposable vapes as well as restricting sweet and fruity flavors. O’Shea, however, explains that the UK Government needs to take further action.

It is important that we fully realize the effects that flavored vapes have on the human body “before it’s too late”, he said. “It is plausible that we are on the cusp of a new wave of chronic diseases that will emerge 15 to 20 years from now due to these exposures.”

Written by Kevin Han

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