Posted on September 09, 2012
Many smokers out there really don’t understand the facts and lies about actual smoking. What really is nicotine? What is a carcinogen? What does smoking do to me to make me feel so good? Why should I quit smoking?
What is nicotine?
Nicotine is simply a naturally occurring chemical found in tobacco plant leaves. The tobacco plant produces nicotine as a defense mechanism to insects and animals which deters them from attacking the plant. When a smoker goes and lights a cigarette and puffs on it, the leaves burn and nicotine is inhaled.
By far, the most direct question that smokers and non-smokers want to know is "Is it the nicotine that causes cancer?"
Is nicotine a carcinogen? Does nicotine cause disease related to smoking?
The answer to both of these questions, NO. A carcinogen is a substance that is capable of causing cancer in humans. In a traditional cigarette, nicotine is not the cause of cancers. It is the other 4,000 chemicals which are KNOWN carcinogens and known to cause diseases such as: cancer, lung disease, heart disease, and many other disorders. So, it’s not the nicotine that bad for you, it’s the delivery system of the nicotine. A carcinogen is toxic to the body and causes dangerous changes to DNA, usually increasing the rate of cell division in the body. The increase of change from the cell division, also increase the chances for the structure of DNA to change. Sometimes, cell DNA can mutate to cause cancer, especially if the carcinogen in constantly present.
What does nicotine do to the body and brain of a smoker?
Once nicotine is inhaled, it only takes 7 seconds to hit the brain! That makes it one of the fastest acting drugs. Research has shown that nicotine increases the level of dopamine in the brain, similar to drugs like cocaine and heroin but to a much lesser degree. Dopamine is the reason for feeling relaxed and calm. Concentration and memory are increased. The effects of nicotine will only last 5 minutes to 1 hour. Nicotine wears off so quickly in the body that smokers have to continue to dose themselves frequently to maintain these effects.
Is nicotine lethal to me?
Again, nicotine is not a carcinogen. It offers an increase in dopamine levels and is not lethal when used correctly. The average cigarette has about 1 to 1.5 mg of nicotine. It would take over 50 mg of nicotine to be lethal and deadly to a human. When used correctly, nicotine is a very safe drug that can be used frequently.
Nicotine is often been compared to caffeine in coffee. Coffee addicts want coffee for the same buzz and increased brain activity as smokers.
Why should I quit smoking and how?
That’s an easy question. You should stop smoking because of the carcinogenic properties of cigarettes. You can still receive your nicotine, which is the sole reason smokers began smoking, but via a different delivery system and not the traditional way of cigarettes. There are many different delivery systems out on the market today. There’s the patch, the gum, pills, and the list goes on and on. The system of the patch fails many because it is a constant stream of nicotine into the body, very different from what smokers are used to. The only delivery system that is remotely close to smoking a traditional cigarette is an electronic cigarette. It offers all the good and none of the bad. An electronic cigarette or e-cig is simply a battery operated device that vaporizes a nicotine solution. They are very realistic and even have a cloud of water vapor when someone exhales which makes it look even more like a regular cigarette. An e-cigarette allows you to inhale your nicotine without all of the harmful carcinogens. So you can enjoy your nicotine and only your nicotine.