The Korea Times


ⓕ font-size

  • -2
  • -1
  • 0
  • +1
  • +2

Is vaping healthy?

  • Facebook share button
  • Twitter share button
  • Kakao share button
  • Mail share button
  • Link share button
By Robert Song

As a recent convert to "vaping" I am proud to say that using e-cigarettes has helped me kick the nasty habit of smoking after 30 years. Like an old friend, I honestly do sometimes miss smoking, but like an old friend who was always perpetually getting you into trouble, enough was enough. I am writing this to hopefully educate and inspire other smokers to use this method if other methods fail.

First of all, to answer the title question: Is Vaping Healthy? The short answer is yes, if you are a smoker. But if you never smoked before, then it is probably not so healthy. The next question I constantly get is "Isn't nicotine bad for you?" Well, nicotine in itself at certain levels is not bad for you but since it is highly addictive, and it's in cigarettes, you ingest tar with it, therein lies the problem. From my research, up to 50 mgs of nicotine can be handled by our bodies. Put in perspective, the strongest brand of cigarettes on the market is about 10 mgs. Like caffeine in coffee in the form of a couple of cups a day, nicotine will do no harm to your body at low levels.

The main reason vaping is healthier than smoking is that the user is getting no tar at all. Zero. Tar is known to be made up of 5000-7000 different chemicals, much of which are carcinogenic and so can lead to cancer. Nicotine is not the enemy, tar is. So what exactly is in the e-liquid or "juice' that goes into those pen-like devices people suck on? There are basically 5 ingredients – nicotine, water, PG (propylene glycol), VG (vegetable glycerin) and flavorings. Nicotine levels can range from 0 mg to 36 mg with most people using between the 5-10 mg range. PG and VG are base ingredients found in other foods that are approved by the FDA. And finally, flavorings are chemicals that give the juice its particular taste and so far no studies have shown them to be harmful.

Vaping has proven to be so effective in helping people quit smoking that the largest British doctors association came out a couple of years ago to say that vaping will reduce the deaths and illnesses caused by smoking by 95 percent in the near future. And many others in the health industry have come out and voiced similar positive reviews. But the message one gets in the mass media is mostly negative. You may have seen or read in the news how ‘vaping' is drawing in younger kids with the sweet candy like flavors. Or how easy it is to get over the Internet or other means that more and more kids are starting to vape instead of smoke. This may be true, but for me, if my teenager were to do one of these, I would prefer vaping. No poison. Another fallacy that is touted is that nicotine causes cancer. There is no evidence to support this claim. These are suspicious writers who proclaim these type of non-evidenced ideas who are probably being paid by big tobacco companies since they are losing loads of business to vaping.

Like with any issue on the Internet, the truth may be hard to dig up but if you read through the unlimited articles, the truth does rise up. This industry would not be thriving so much if there really were an unhealthy aspect to it. For me, I am 10 months tobacco free and loving my healthier body, freedom to vape indoors and saving money.

Robert Song is a Korean-Canadian small business owner based in Seoul. He hopes that people struggling to quit smoking will give vaping a try. He can be reached at

Interactive News

  • E-Prix thrills racing fans in Seoul
  • With tough love,
  • 'Santa dogs' help rebuild burnt forests in Andong
  • 'Santa dogs' help rebuild burnt forests in Andong
  • A tale of natural wine

Top 10 Stories

go top LETTER