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June 1st, 2010
04:03 PM ET

U.S. cigarette brands tops in cancer causing chemicals

By Miriam Falco
CNN Medical Managing Editor

Smokers of U.S. brand cigarettes may get more bang for their buck in the worst way according to a small study conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Researchers found U.S. made cigarettes contain more cancer-causing chemicals than some cigarettes brands made elsewhere around the world.

“Not all cigarettes are made alike” says Dr. Jim Pirkle, deputy director for science at the CDC’s National Center for Environmental Health. He says this is the first study to show that “U.S. cigarettes have more of the major carcinogen [TSNAs] than foreign made cigarettes." TSNAs are “tobacco-specific nitrosamines,” the major cancer-causing substance in tobacco.

126 smokers in five cities – Waterloo, Ontario; Melbourne, Victoria (Australia); London, England, Buffalo, New York, and Minneapolis, Minnesota – were recruited for this study.

They were between the ages of 18 and 55 and smoked at least 10 cigarettes a day for the past year and had been brand loyal for at least three months. The cigarettes smoked by the study recruits represented some of the more popular brands for each country including: Players light and DuMaurier in Canada; Marlboro, Newport Light, Camel Light in the U.S.; Peter Jackson and Peter Stuyvesant in Australia; and Benson & Hedges and Silk Cut Purple in the United Kingdom.

Scientists analyzed more than 2,000 cigarette butts to get the data they are reporting today, says Pirkle.

When researchers compared cigarette brands in the U.S. to those in Canada and Australia, they found three times higher levels of the cancer causing substance in the U.S. smokers’ mouths. The mouth levels are important because they give an indication of what levels if carcinogens are going into the lungs. (Smoking tobacco is a major cause of lung cancer).

“If you want to stop exposure to these things, you have to stop smoking.”

They also found twice as much TSNA in the urine samples of U.S. smokers compared to those in Canada and Australia, an indication that cancer-causing substance has traveled throughout the body.

There is no one group that speaks for the tobacco institute anymore, according to Darryl Jason, a spokesman for the Tobacco Merchants Association (TMA), which is why he couldn’t comment on the study. The TMA was founded in 1915 to “manage information of vital interest to the worldwide tobacco industry according to their website. Jason did point out that cigarettes manufactured in the U.S. contain a different blend of tobacco from cigarettes made elsewhere.

The study acknowledges that there are different types of tobacco depending where the cigarettes are made. But that’s only one factor says Pirkle: “The TSNA levels largely come from the way tobacco is cured.” The heating process, humidity and the type of the ferlizer used to grow the tobacco also contribute to the levels of cancer causing substances, says Pirkle.

Editor's Note: Medical news is a popular but sensitive subject rooted in science. We receive many comments on this blog each day; not all are posted. Our hope is that much will be learned from the sharing of useful information and personal experiences based on the medical and health topics of the blog. We encourage you to focus your comments on those medical and health topics and we appreciate your input. Thank you for your participation.


soundoff (380 Responses)
  1. ian

    @ Dan:
    The reason they didn't mention that is because this article is representing the results of a scientific study that focused on one particular thing: do U.S. brand cigarettes have more carcinogens than those manufactured abroad. The article reports the findings of this particular study, namely that they do. I recommend doing some research on statistics and experimental design and you might gain some insight as to why this article only discusses that which it purports to be about.

    Another reason they don't mention some of those things is because they are not true. Formaldehyde is found in cigarettes and treated wood, but not in alcohol. Alcohol does not cause throat or lung cancer. Again, that is cigarettes. Granted, alcohol is a deadly substance, probably on par with cigarettes but not in the ways you mention.

    There is no reason to be so defensive. This article is simply reporting the findings of a scientific study. It's only one study, with one variable, and so it would be irrelevant to mention others. Relax. Have a cigarette or ten and enjoy your slow, painful death. It doesn't bother me.

    June 2, 2010 at 12:23 | Report abuse | Reply
  2. Jordan N.

    @Jon:
    I assume you wouldn't be opposed to taxes on sugary, salty, and fatty foods, too, since they are fast becoming the biggest threat to our health and contribute to so many other health issues. Personally, I have no problem with that. I doubt Coke or McDonalds will lose much revenue, even if taxes are absurdly high, because people need their junk food fix (studies have shown that HFCS, which is in most fast food, sodas, etc. can be as addictive as hard drugs).

    June 2, 2010 at 12:32 | Report abuse | Reply
  3. Dan

    To all.

    Thanks just smoked a PACK OF SMOKES

    Dan

    June 2, 2010 at 12:33 | Report abuse | Reply
  4. Adam

    What a surprise – cigarette companies cram their products full of nasty, addictive chemicals that make an unhealthy product not only addictive but downright deadly. And it's all completely legal.

    This is why I try to never buy American major-brand cigarettes. I'll pay more for a pack of 555's, or American Spirits, and smoke them much slower. Moderation is a concept that seems to have been lost in this battle over smoking...

    June 2, 2010 at 12:36 | Report abuse | Reply
  5. Weaver

    Hi All,

    I loved this article. Drove home the fact of something I already suspected myself! I was a long time smoker, the last two years I was smoking American Spirit brand, natural (no added chemicals). When I did finally kick the habit for good, the withdrawal symptoms were SO SO much different and easier than when I had tried to quit smoking Marlboro lights. I think it's the chemicals that increase the addictive properties or play a big part of it IMHO anyway.

    Oh and thanks Dan for the entertainment value!

    June 2, 2010 at 12:51 | Report abuse | Reply
  6. brad

    Its funny how the state of Minnesota wont let you smoke in their bars or food establishments, but the state will still let the bars sell cigarettes to their customers. Why???? because the state wants their tax dollars. They dont really care about the health issues, they just want their money.

    June 2, 2010 at 12:51 | Report abuse | Reply
  7. Brian in Toronto

    Governments will never give up their addiction to taxes derived from tobacco and alcohol. They know how dangerous they are but will never make them illegal. The only thing to do is raise the sin taxes on these products high enough that they begin to pay for the social and medical costs to society.

    June 2, 2010 at 13:06 | Report abuse | Reply
  8. Mike

    I totally agree with Dan...I wonder if these tobacco fearing idiots realize how much Carbon Monoxide "THEIR" own cars put out? You cry babies ought to clean up your own backyards before complaining about the other guy. Those who live in glass houses maybe should not be throwing rocks. But hey, why not go knock down a fifth of your favorite booze & take a drive, we smokers love being around you drunks on the road about as much as you like being around us smokers. I wonder how many people on the road have been killed by smokers vs. drunk drivers?

    June 2, 2010 at 13:06 | Report abuse | Reply
  9. Derek

    Kim- I love how you rip on Dan for his minute of craziness and then you follow it up with blaming men for most the things that go on in the world. Interesting view. Were you beaten or raped? Maybe you should look into the amount of abuse on children and abuse towards men by women. Oh that might be a bit hard because women don't typically get put in court for beating their husband (little embarassing for the man) and even after beating their children women some how are able to then get their kids back and collect absurd amounts of "child support" that usually caters to the mom sitting on her arse. But hey thanks for your limited view on the world. You and Dan proved why morons should not have a keyboard. Next time try to make a more specific comment rather then grouping all men together under an umbrella labeled rapist, wife beaters, .........etc.

    June 2, 2010 at 13:31 | Report abuse | Reply
  10. smokeumifugotum

    All hail Dan!

    With all the drama and destruction in the world these days, it's good to laugh but seriously, Dan – dude, get some help.

    June 2, 2010 at 13:31 | Report abuse | Reply
  11. boocat

    I'm inclined to not believe this report. I tried smoking French cigarettes (Gauloises) and when I took the first drag I thought my head would explode not to mention the taste was horrible (and they were not stale). It tasted like it was full of toxic chemicals.

    June 2, 2010 at 13:36 | Report abuse | Reply
  12. Jim in Milwaukee

    The cigarettes around here have just gone up again to over $7 a pack. The only reason most people quit is due to the taxes which raised again and again and again, (as sin tax) until you have to be stupid to buy them. My comment is pro tobacco, but I have come to realize that all those taxes are for a reason; to help you to quit.
    What ever happened to out right of freedom of choice? It got taxed away. Why hasn't anyone stepped up to challenge the 'sin" tax? Liquor and tobacco are part of our economy and have been singled out to cover careless government spending that mounts our debts. The people making those laws need some sort of sin tax on themselves, because it's more of a sin to ruin our economy with careless spending than smoke and drink.

    June 2, 2010 at 13:36 | Report abuse | Reply
  13. Lisa

    As a smoker, I would like to see the taxes increased on equally terrible, life-threatening, and legal products. Fast food, alcohol, high-fructose beverages... these are causing diabetes, obesity, heart attacks, strokes, DUI deaths, etc. They are also products that I don't consume.

    Marijuana tea should be legalized and taxed (this to appease the second-hand smoke concerns). It's less damaging than any of the other substances mentioned above, and it would generate enormous amounts of revenue for states.

    Let's face it, everyone is going to die of something. Everyone has their own personal method to reduce stress, relax, enjoy (over-eating, drinking, smoking, or all of the above). Let's distribute the tax burden fairly.

    June 2, 2010 at 13:36 | Report abuse | Reply
  14. Byrd

    The higher cancer-causing levels have no doubt been worked out with the AMA to keep the cancer rate at profitable levels. Never underestimate the cynicism and downright evil of the American market.

    June 2, 2010 at 13:46 | Report abuse | Reply
  15. Martin

    OK-I don't care about Dan, but these folks touting the "safe" electronic cigarettes need to be taken to task. Nobody doubts the dangers of regular cigarettes, but here come these people talking about electronic cigarettes as a safe alternative. NOT!!! Using electronic cigarettes exposes people to other deadly toxins. So, NO THEY ARE NOT SAFE AND SHOULD NOT BE LEGAL!!!

    June 2, 2010 at 13:52 | Report abuse | Reply
  16. JohninTampa

    Tobacco is evil. It addicts, it rots the body 15 ways, it makes you and your clothes and your car stink, and it takes away your money. It makes your spit brown. If you smoke then life insurance costs some 83% more than if you don't–see if you can guess why.

    Anyone who grows it and/or processes it is a drug pusher worthy of death.

    June 2, 2010 at 14:04 | Report abuse | Reply
  17. Garry-Arkansas

    Gosh-I wonder how many of you even think about the carcinogens that are being released in the charcoal you grill with? Study after study after study after study..WE KNOW SMOKING KILLS–Dan was just saying that ciggs aren't the only legal product that is dangerous. He may have gotten carried away a bit, but if you look at and read all the so called studies and recommendations that have been put out concerning everything from baby food to lotions to, yes smoking.THEY ALL have chemicals that we either ingest or apply to our bodies.
    And then of course there is the problem with car emissions...But never fear America..Our Governement will ban/restrict and make new laws that only allow us to do what THEY want us to do.

    June 2, 2010 at 14:08 | Report abuse | Reply
  18. JohninTampa

    Mike, you may be crazier than Dan. You do realize you are drawing a comparison of people who smoke with AUTOMOBILES, don't you? As I do not smoke, the pollutants I breath into the air around me amounts to a small amount of naturally-recyclilng carbon dioxide. What you smokers and gas guzzling clunkers put into the air is a rich stew of many deadly poisons.

    June 2, 2010 at 14:12 | Report abuse | Reply
  19. tommas

    Dan brought up a very good point, but should have started his post alittle better. Why do we constantly hear about the dangers of cigarettes yet every sporting event (that millions of children watch) is flooded with alcohol commericals. God forbid there is a tobacco advertisement in the same magazine that a teenager might read.

    Simple, most americans by a clinical stand point are alcoholics. And that is how or alcohol industry sponsored government likes it! Cigarettes are harmful no doubt about it, but the bias in how these dangerous are reported compared other substances in very concerning. Look at the war on cannabis, the "safest phsyco-active substance known to man" is seen as the devil and will destroy our society. Why? because it would severly damage the alcohol industry.

    June 2, 2010 at 14:16 | Report abuse | Reply
  20. Pat

    I have smoked 57 years and so far have no illnesses from smoking.I started age 11. My entire family smoked and lived into their hundreds. My family founded this country in 1607 Jamestown as owners of the Virginia Company which came to grow Tobacco. According to my doctors the reason I have no ill effects from tobacco it is Genetic.

    The real problem is Radon Gas which kills at least 50% of the cases attributed to tobacco. But they cannot tax Radon Gas . Another pollutant responsible for Asthma and COPD etc is Pesticides and other contaminents like powerful cleaning products in our enviroment. But they won't tax them either.

    Smokers have become the poster child for politicians who want to make big bucks taxing smokers to death.

    June 2, 2010 at 14:19 | Report abuse | Reply
    • T-bone

      One of the nasty byproducts of burning processed tobacco is Hydrogen Cyanide , basically "rat poison" . I am very sensitive to that poison....go figure , poison , not good for you . When I am exposed to someone else's exhaust (from cigarettes) I become ill , cold sweats , migraine headache , dizziness , and nausea . When I am exposed to this poison , which is not ellective , I am made sick , but smokers continually say I should be more tollerant of THIER addiction . Thank God smoking has been banned in eating institutions and Bars . A "smoking section" in a resturaunt is equal to a "peeing section" in a pool .
      Smoke in your own personal space not mine....When a smoker lights up next to me and says " it's my right to smoke" only one persons rights are infringed on , My right to clean air . I do not ask the smoker to breath toxic smoke , only clean air , the smoker wants me to breath toxic smoke , for his own enjoyment.. Argue all you want smoking is a MAJOR public health hazzard !!!!!

      September 4, 2010 at 21:26 | Report abuse |
  21. michael

    i'm not surprised that US cigarettes contain more carcinogens. i've noticed in the past few years alone that cigarettes have a "cheaper" taste, not much natural tobacco taste left in a cigarette anymore. anyway, i'm happy to see many people point out the necessity of tobacco in terms of tax dollars. imagine how much we'd be paying in taxes without tobacco? it would be crazy. sure medical insurance costs would go down, but then there would be no need to develop the medicines, breathing aides, for people to get paid to develop these things. give some, take some. as far as the second hand smoking issue is and how people find smoking absolutely disgusting...get over it. it's a personal choice. there are much bigger dangers out there than walking past someone or a group of people smoking. i hate the angle of anti-smoking parents too. i'm a parent, i smoke outside, occasionally my kids will be around me whenever i'm smoking and i don't get overly concerned about it. i do get irritated though when parents give me a dirty look (sometimes there's a ballsy one to make a remark that i can hear) when i'm near my kids with a cigarette. especially when they have fat kids.

    June 2, 2010 at 14:20 | Report abuse | Reply
  22. Spucky

    @ Dan (and everyone else here who believes that formaldehyde is in any way used in the brewing process for beer):

    Is there any truth to the formaldehyde-in-beer story? It turns out that there is, after all, just a tiny bit of fact here. There are a few small (non-exporting) Chinese breweries that do indeed add a tiny amount of formaldehyde to the mash. It acts as a clarifying agent. However, that was a Chinese ‘innovation’ and no one else’s. Some Chinese breweries, not all, still permit formaldehyde in mashing. No other breweries in the world are using this practice. It used to be part of the bottling practice, before brewing and bottling technology improved. It hasn't been used in the US for over 100 years. Credit for this answer goes to http://www.lewbryson.com.

    June 2, 2010 at 14:20 | Report abuse | Reply
  23. kh

    Alcohol and cigarettes are both bad for you. Anybody who thinks the government should still babysit adults and tell them these facts again and again after decades of published studies and findings proving those facts, must have spent too much time in the bar, smoking to pay attention.

    June 2, 2010 at 14:21 | Report abuse | Reply
  24. Mina

    So funny – one person makes an off-topic comment and everybody responds to it. Even chastising him for being off-topic is giving him too much attention, but I think that was the idea anyway.

    June 2, 2010 at 14:22 | Report abuse | Reply
  25. Ron from Maryland

    Did anyone in the study think to review the effects of the chemicals put in Fire Supressant Cigarettes (FCS's)? It may appear the "Nanny State" may be contributing to this increase. But then, any thinking American knew this before this nickel and dime study came out.

    June 2, 2010 at 14:23 | Report abuse | Reply
  26. DH

    Here is the money machine. It's not about anything other than absolute greed and horrific lack of integrity by the companies producing them and the governments enabling them. It all makes money. Chemicals used in the crops produce more per acre and save preparation and turn over time of yield. Higher levels of cancer causing chemicals creates more cancer which is a money machine. Look into whether the American Cancer Society is funding anything to feasibly CURE cancer. They are not. They are funding development of treatments, paying their officers and staff, and paying for political campaigns that favor the views of the profit-taking board members that are also highly invested in the for-profit practices of medicine. Nobody in positions of power or influence care. This all makes insane amounts of money preying on folks addicted to the product and later bankrupting their families when the cancer comes along. Forgot to mention the flu, colds, coughs that people cough up money to treat, hospital stays for other related illnesses .. c'mon. Quit smoking. Do without. You can handle it. You're feeding a sick and corrupt system of deception.

    June 2, 2010 at 14:26 | Report abuse | Reply
  27. Jim

    Its just the tobacco evolving to become more potent. Thats all it is.

    June 2, 2010 at 14:28 | Report abuse | Reply
  28. Marine57

    Smoking is a major cause of lung cancer???
    My mom was a diabetic and chain-smoker all her life. She died at 74 and never got lung cancer.

    June 2, 2010 at 14:32 | Report abuse | Reply
  29. IF

    Funny... is this article about Dan or why on earth is almost everybody addressing the poor guy??? He seems to have issues enough with a lot of things... if you turn on him, he'll probably go out and shoot a cat.

    The article is about US tobacco brands (at least those tested) being higher on carcinogens. So, switch brands, cease smoking or read something else...
    And the editor notes: "Our hope is that much will be learned from the sharing of useful information ...".
    Well, I smoke Silk Cut and occasionally Marlboro. After this article I'll stick to Silk Cut (still a filthy habit)

    June 2, 2010 at 14:32 | Report abuse | Reply
  30. D J BURNS

    LETS FACE IT,FROM THE MOMENT WE ENTERED THIS LIFE,WE
    ARE ON THE ROAD TO DEATH. WHY NOT DO ALL THE THINGS
    WE ENJOY WHILE WE LIVE THAT LIFE. I FOR ONE ONE DRINK
    MY BRANDS OF BREW AND HAVE SMOKED SINCE I WAS 12 YRS
    OLD. I AM JUST SHY OF 70 YRS. I WOULD NEVER DO HARM FOR
    WANT OF EITHER OF THOSE VICES. BUT I MIGHT FOR A CUP
    OF COFFEE. LIGHTEN UP FOLKS LIVE AS YOU PLEASE BEFORE
    OUR GOVERNMENT TAKES EVERYTHIING ELSE WE HAVE HAD
    THE PLEASURE OF.

    NAM VET

    June 2, 2010 at 14:38 | Report abuse | Reply
  31. Anton

    Guys, Dan is partially correct. Read this article http://www.beer-faq.com/formaldehyde-beer/

    June 2, 2010 at 14:41 | Report abuse | Reply
  32. c. j.

    I am not saying they are picking on the smoking public... But sheesh. If you are going to go after the ingredients of tobacco, then at least have enough heart in you to go after everything that goes in our mouths/guts.

    It's a know fact many of the foods on the market have ingredients in them that can cause ill effects. No one ever complains about this as much as they should be. If you care so much about the poisons in our body, then don't stop at tobacco.

    June 2, 2010 at 14:42 | Report abuse | Reply
  33. Daniel

    Ok so 1st I agree smoking is horrible for your health, and in no way support tobacco. But just a thought that was not mentioned...maybe there were more carcinogens in the American cigarettes filters because they filter more of them out? That aspect I'm sure was measured in some light but how knows. I like to play devil's advocate.

    June 2, 2010 at 14:49 | Report abuse | Reply
  34. Tannie

    In a way, I can understand what Dan is trying to say. It's not just smoking that is dangerous to human health, but alcohol consumption can be potentially dangerous as well. Of course, you don't hear too many articles on the health affects of alcohol because it brings in a ton of money. They just say "drink responsibly". Something to really think about. hmm...

    June 2, 2010 at 14:50 | Report abuse | Reply
  35. Vivian

    Cigarettes should be a controlled substance, like narcotics.

    June 2, 2010 at 14:50 | Report abuse | Reply
  36. Ken

    Having been an ex-smoker and have tried cigarettes from many other countries while traveling. I can see that this story has a lot of merit. I was only able to quit after switching to a "natural" tobacco cigarette. So I switched to American Spirit. They are made in New Mexico, but have no chemical additives and is a pure tobacco product. This also means that the nicotine (addictive) properties were much lower as well. In Feb. 2009 I was able to quit cold turkey because I had virtually no heavy cravings whatsoever. Also, having been used to smoking nothing but all natural, if you try a mainstream cig, you'll be able to tell immediately that there is a nastier taste to it and even tell that there is additives.

    June 2, 2010 at 14:51 | Report abuse | Reply
  37. Jim

    I have to agree with Weaver. I quit and started a couple of times and then someone told me about American Spirit. Rolled my own fro about six months, went cold turkey and it wasn't nearly as miserable as the times before.

    Tobacco is a nasty and strong addiction, no matter what. People who smoke but still realize the danger that they place themselves and friends and family in need to come to grips with it.

    June 2, 2010 at 14:51 | Report abuse | Reply
  38. Drinker

    In 2008 there were 13,846 alcohol related fatalities, this includes people who killed themselves. 443,000 people die each year in the us because of cigarettes according to WHO, 50,000 because of second hand smoke. Keep puffing, I'll keep drinking! Survival of the fittest!

    June 2, 2010 at 14:55 | Report abuse | Reply
  39. Snacula

    Hey Dan.
    Sorry everyone's picking on you. You should not have smoked a whole pack of cigs in that amount of time. It's too much.
    I am a smoker of 22 years at about 12 smokes a day.
    And a drinker of about 10 beers a day for that same amount of time.
    I am 41 years old, and feel terrific. I think that the preservatives in both smokes and alcohol also help in preserving your age and well-being.
    Our government will ALWAYS do what is in their best interests, not ours. We see it everyday. So, of course they won't do anything to stop the tobacco companies from putting more junk in the smokes. Like a junk shot sort of. My suggestion is to grow your own. Along with brewing your own. Keep the gov as far away as you can from what you intake of theirs. They serve their people poison and they happily partake of it. Think of it as a gigantic Jonestown.

    June 2, 2010 at 14:55 | Report abuse | Reply
  40. marian

    This is just ONE form of a cancer causing habit – alcohol is another – there is no contest as to which is worse – they are all bad............

    June 2, 2010 at 15:06 | Report abuse | Reply
  41. paul

    This I knew already.

    I was a heavy smoker for years (1-2 packs/day), and had tried to quit many times. Then I lived in Europe for one year and upon returning became very sick every time I had an American cigarette. My body had come to reject the all the chemicals. After not being use to the chemicals you can notice the difference, good news is that it helped me to quit, have not smoked in 5 years.

    June 2, 2010 at 15:07 | Report abuse | Reply
  42. Shauna R

    haha! leave Dan alone... I MEAN ANYTIME SOMEONE TYPES IN CAPS THEY ARE SERIOUS! hahaha this article hasn't told me anything I didn't already know. But Dan made it amusing!

    June 2, 2010 at 15:10 | Report abuse | Reply
  43. Steve

    At least we're #1 at something

    June 2, 2010 at 15:21 | Report abuse | Reply
  44. Smokes and Things LLC

    As a person that works in the Tobacco Retail biz I have a couple things to say about tobacco products. Tobacco has been around for 100's of years and been smoked, chewed, and snorted by consumers all over this planet. The likelihood that it will ever go away is nil. People will always smoke no matter what the risk involved. And I know this because I interact with smokers everyday. They all know the risks involved in smoking and from all my customers who smoke 95% tell me they will always smoke and CHOOSE to smoke. And like me, most of them starting smoking knowing that smoking is not good for you. So why smoke? For me I started after I deployed to Iraq. I found it was a good way to burn of some stress. When I got back I continued smoking socially around other smokers. I know it's not good for you, yet I still chose to smoke. I probably smoke a pack a week at most now and I enjoy it. I know there are smokers that smoke much more and I view that as smoking abuse, much like you can abuse alcohol. And in regards to alcohol that was once condemed when our government established prohibition. At that time our government was anti alcohol and claiming that drinking caused serious health issues and death. Millions was spent during the prohibition to eliminate alchohol from our country....much like today with the anti smoking crusade. I encourage all of you to do some research on the prohibition era when the government tried to step in and tell us we couldn't drink. Not only did it waste millions of taxpayers dollars, but also lives. Bootleggers were killed in raids and in one instance our own government poisened thousands of gallons of alcohol before the christmas holiday and new years so they could back thier claim that alcohol kills. Much like I believe the FDA has added more chemicals to our cigarettes here in the US to make them fire safe. So why are US cigarettes more harmful? That is one reason why. A lot of my customers have switch to "organic" tobacco products so they can roll thier own. It's not healthier and it's not claimed to be. But it does not have any of the fire safe and other garbage that goes in the big name brand tobacco that is mandated by the FDA. There is one major thing that does irk me about smoking though..... smokers who have no regard for non smokers and littering butts everywhere. So please if you smoke. Don't give the anti smoking crusade ammo about how we are all dirty ashtrays!

    June 2, 2010 at 15:21 | Report abuse | Reply
  45. Jeff

    Has critical thinking gone out the window? I can't believe how uneducated so many people are. And it doesn't look like many people actually READ the article.

    It doesn't say US companies add these chemicals. It's the way they are cured. And MAYBE it's the fertilizer.

    Secondly, are some of you buying the notion that somehow foreign cigarettes don't cause cancer? Jeez! The Hate America attitude has gotten so bad, we even hate our own carcinogens!

    Also, the article states, " they three times higher levels of the cancer causing substance in the U.S. smokers’ mouths "... Three times what? Was it 0.001 vs. 0.003? It doesn't really say.

    And this beauty: " twice as much TSNA in the urine samples of U.S. smokers " Twice as much of what? Was it 0.002 vs. 0.004? Again, we don't know.

    I would say this is a poorly written piece, unless its intent is to stir up more anti-smoking fervor. In that case: Well done!

    I would also say it's a good thing most of you dolts don't vote. Wait... Darn it. Apparently this IS the crowd that votes.

    We're doomed.

    June 2, 2010 at 15:24 | Report abuse | Reply
  46. John

    They spend thousands, if not millions of dollars on these studies. WHY?

    Its pretty stupid because everyone knows that smoking is not good for you. The same goes for consuming alcohol. However they ban flavored cigarettes but still allow how many flavored beer coolers on the market? How many flavored vodka's are there now? The statistics show that underage drinking causes more deaths and injury than smoking. But Kool-ade flavored beer is not targeted by the government who is "looking out for us".

    When was the last time any of these politicians looked at the ingredients label for most of the food we all consume. Half the ingredients are bad for you. Plus energy drinks are selling at an all time high, but nobody addresses the harm from overdoses of vitamins. I see teens pounding those down like mad and bouncing off the walls for hours...then complain their chest hurts or they feel dizzy.

    Instead, the government wastes time and money telling us adults that smoking is bad for you. How about letting us adults smoke, eat and drink what we want. Slap a warning label on and be done with it. Quit picking on smokers for all the worlds problems.

    The money on the stupid repetitive studies could be used for much better things like the homeless, food banks or reducing the national debt.

    June 2, 2010 at 15:25 | Report abuse | Reply
  47. Nicole

    @ Dan – Put down the alcohol before you start ranting about the affects of alcohol. We see it and get it.

    Enjoy.

    June 2, 2010 at 15:37 | Report abuse | Reply
  48. Jason

    http://www.tobaccofreekids.org/research/factsheets/pdf/0072.pdf

    June 2, 2010 at 15:42 | Report abuse | Reply
  49. Larry

    I smoked for over forty years, have been nicotine-free now for four years. Yet I fear the damage has been done. Considering so many people get latent lung cancer, it hardly seems worthwhile to quit. Peter Jennings died from lung cancer over twenty years after he quit. I do, however, realize cigs have so many other health risks that it makes smoking a major health risk. Also nasty, expensive, burns holes in clothing, yellows teeth, bad breath, shortness of breath, nothing good about it.

    June 2, 2010 at 16:07 | Report abuse | Reply
  50. Weston

    I think everyone here who smokes would benefit from doing a little research into electronic cigarettes. They are currently saving my life and have no harmful effects to others or any noticeable or uncomfortable smell. It is a stop smoking aid that really works believe it or not...

    June 2, 2010 at 16:12 | Report abuse | Reply
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Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.