Harmless or harmful? How shisha smoke affects health

Hookahs are trendy. Many like to try new types of tobacco and smoke with friends. However, this is more dangerous than often thought. How shisha smoke affects the body? And how harmful is it compared to cigarettes?

Originally, hookah smoking was common among older men, especially in the Middle East. This has long since changed: Around the world and also in Germany, more and more young people are consuming shishas.¹ Whether after school, during a study break at university or at the weekend: For many, meeting up with friends in a shisha bar and smoking a hookah together is simply part of the fun. Even non-smokers often reach for the shisha tube and are convinced that the smoke of a hookah is less harmful than cigarette smoke. But is this really true?

The myth of harmless shisha smoking

The fact that there is no tar in hookah tobacco does not mean much.

A mere glance at the ingredients quickly makes it clear that shisha is anything but a healthy alternative to cigarettes: In addition to nicotine, hookah smoke contains at least 82 harmful substances, including numerous carcinogens, toxic metals and carbon monoxide.² The fact that there is no tar in hookah tobacco doesn’t mean much: Tar is only formed when the tobacco is heated, be it in the cigarette or in the shisha. Inhaling all these pollutants can have acute health consequences, such as impaired lung function, carbon monoxide poisoning, increased blood pressure and heart palpitations. In the long term, it also increases the risk of lung cancer and heart disease, among other things. By sharing the pipe, there is a risk of transmission of hepatitis and herpes viruses.

Sweet poison from the hookah

Shisha smoking uses a special moist tobacco that comes in a variety of flavors such as apple, vanilla or cinnamon. In the hookah, the tobacco is smoldered on charcoal. The resulting smoke is then passed through a water vessel, where it cools down, and inhaled through a hose. The sweet taste masks the unpleasant tobacco taste, suggesting a deceptive "harmlessness". In addition, the smoke cooled by the water is usually inhaled more deeply than hot cigarette smoke. In the worst case scenario, this can lead to carbon monoxide poisoning. Besides, the nicotine concentration in the blood increases very much within a very short time. Many believe that water filters smoke. That’s not true either: In fact, the smoke passes through the water in small bubbles, so it doesn’t come into contact with it at all – so "purification" can’t take place at all. While shishas are not usually smoked on a daily basis, but rather occasionally, mostly in groups. However, smoking a hookah lasts much longer than that of a cigarette and so more pollutants enter the body. Remains to be said: Smoking a hookah is by no means healthier than smoking a cigarette – the potential for addiction is similar, the pollution even higher.

Finally stop smoking – this is how it works for sure

Whether it’s cigarettes, shisha or other tobacco vaporizers, quitting smoking isn’t easy – especially if your friends don’t go along with you. We would like to support you on the way into a smoke-free life, therefore we take over for our insured ones the complete costs for the Coaching program nonsmoker heroes. Daily videos, exercises and sharing with the community help participants become and stay a non-smoking hero themselves. All information is available on our website.

Like this post? Please share to your friends:
Leave a Reply

;-) :| :x :twisted: :smile: :shock: :sad: :roll: :razz: :oops: :o :mrgreen: :lol: :idea: :grin: :evil: :cry: :cool: :arrow: :???: :?: :!: