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Substances hazardous to health in tobacco-free water pipes
Everyone should be aware that smoking is unhealthy. According to some experts, hookah smoking is particularly harmful. Even if no tobacco is used, there is a health risk.
smoking is dangerous for your health
According to research, there are fewer and fewer smokers in Germany, but this is not a reason for the all-clear. Smoking alone favors twelve types of cancer such as lung cancer, pancreatic cancer and colorectal cancer, cardiovascular diseases such as heart attack and stroke, arterial diseases such as arteriosclerosis (hardening of the arteries) or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease COPD (smoking lung). Health experts are now pointing out that smoking is also a health hazard if there is no tobacco involved.
Variety of potentially hazardous substances
According to a communication from the Federal Institute for Risk Assessment (BfR), the smoke from tobacco-free hookahs also contains a large number of substances that are potentially hazardous to health.
The institute comes to this result after evaluating various scientific studies and carrying out its own experimental measurements. The tobacco-free products for hookahs include, for example, steam stones, herbal mixtures and gels.
Risk assessment for e-shishas remains difficult
“Even when tobacco and nicotine-free water pipes are used, which are operated with coal or through another combustion process, toxicologically questionable substances arise. Likewise, harmful emissions are to be expected from electric heating of water pipes, ”writes the BfR.
Therefore, according to the institute, smoking tobacco-free hookah products can pose health risks. According to the BfR, a risk assessment for e-shishas is difficult due to the insufficient data situation.
Release of carcinogenic substances
The evaluation of the current study shows that health risks can be caused above all by the release of carcinogenic and other harmful substances during the combustion process - and thus arise regardless of whether they are tobacco-containing or tobacco-free products.
"Apart from nicotine and the tobacco-specific nitrosamines, similar pollutant profiles as for tobacco blends are to be expected for tobacco and nicotine-free products (including carbon monoxide, formaldehyde, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) or benzene)," the message says.
With tobacco and nicotine-free products, the substances are mainly created by burning coal and partly by pyrolysis of other materials (e.g. plant components in herb mixtures or mushrooms). (ad)