Debunking Misinformation: UK’s Health Experts Reveal the Truth About Vaping


UK (Parliament Politic Magazine) – Action on Smoking and Health (ASH), a public health charity established by the UK Royal College of Physicians, has recently published a peer-reviewed briefing paper aimed at dispelling misconceptions surrounding vaping. This initiative seeks to combat the spread of misinformation and promote accurate understanding.

The ASH briefing paper specifically challenges the notion that vaping nicotine is more detrimental to health than smoking tobacco. It presents compelling evidence, revealing that over 75,000 individuals in the UK succumb to smoking-related deaths annually, while a mere five fatalities have been attributed to vaping products in the past 12 years.

ASH To Rectify Misconceptions About Vaping

By shedding light on these statistics, ASH aims to rectify the prevailing misconceptions surrounding vaping and provide the public with reliable information. This effort is crucial in ensuring that individuals make informed decisions about their health and well-being.

Through its rigorous peer-review process, ASH has meticulously examined the available data to present a comprehensive and accurate assessment of the risks associated with vaping. By doing so, they hope to dispel unfounded fears and encourage a more nuanced understanding of this alternative to traditional smoking.

The release of this briefing paper by ASH signifies a significant step towards addressing the misinformation surrounding vaping. It serves as a valuable resource for policymakers, healthcare professionals, and the general public, equipping them with the knowledge needed to make informed choices regarding their smoking habits.

E-Cigarette Usage Has Seen Growth In England 

The ASH brief refutes the notion that vaping serves as a definitive pathway to smoking. It argues that if vaping truly acted as a gateway to smoking on a widespread scale, we would observe a decline in the rate of smoking or even an increase. However, the evidence suggests otherwise. 

Between 2010 and 2021, when e-cigarette usage experienced significant growth in England, the rate of smoking among children continued to decline at a similar pace as before. This data contradicts the gateway hypothesis at a population level.

It is worth noting that the ASH briefing paper’s stance diverges from the World Health Organization’s Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, which advocates for a ban on smoke-free alternatives. This divergence in opinion will likely be a point of contention at the upcoming Conference of the Parties in Panama, scheduled for November.

Misleading Information Spread About Vaping


Consumer and public health advocacy groups in the Philippines have raised concerns about the persistent dissemination of misleading information regarding the potential harm of vaping. This misinformation poses a significant disadvantage to millions of smokers who are seeking safer alternatives to traditional cigarettes.

Dr. Lorenzo Mata, President of Quit for Good, emphasizes that there is a substantial body of scientific evidence supporting the notion that vaping is considerably less harmful than smoking. 

However, certain groups continue to spread falsehoods that pose a risk to public health. This only serves to worsen the global issue of smoking, which remains the leading cause of premature deaths worldwide.

Clarisse Virgino, the Philippine representative to the Coalition of Asia Pacific Tobacco Harm Reduction Advocates (CAPHRA), commends the ASH brief for effectively addressing the misconceptions surrounding vaping.

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Vaping Reduces Harm Caused By Tobacco 

Vapes, heated tobacco products, nicotine pouches, and other smoke-free alternatives to cigarettes are recognized as effective tools for reducing the harm caused by tobacco. Unlike traditional cigarettes, these alternative products do not burn tobacco. 

Scientific research has revealed that burning tobacco produces smoke containing over 6,000 chemicals, with approximately 100 of them linked to smoking-related diseases. By eliminating the burning process, smoke-free alternatives significantly reduce chemical emissions by up to 95 percent.

According to Dr. Mata, the ASH brief highlights compelling real-world evidence from population surveys conducted in England. These surveys indicate that smokers who attempt to quit using e-cigarettes are more likely to succeed. 

This suggests that since 2013, e-cigarettes have played a crucial role in helping an additional 30,000 to 50,000 smokers successfully quit each year in England.

By embracing these smoke-free alternatives, individuals can make a proactive choice to reduce the harmful effects of tobacco. 

The scientific evidence overwhelmingly supports the notion that these products offer a safer and more effective path towards quitting smoking. With the elimination of burning and smoke, users can significantly minimize their exposure to the harmful chemicals associated with traditional cigarettes

Beth Malcolm

Beth Malcolm is Scottish based Journalist at Heriot-Watt University studying French and British Sign Language. She is originally from the north west of England but is living in Edinburgh to complete her studies.