Smokers believe that light cigarettes are less harmful in the long run because they contain less nicotine than the normal version of cigarettes. However, recent evidence points to light cigarettes as the main culprits for adenocarcinoma, a deadly and very common form of lung cancer.
It’s All in the Holes
About half a century ago, cigarettes manufacturers were already facing public backlash for advertising cancerogenic products. In order to make cigarettes appealing once more, they invented the light filter, a perforated filter that allowed air to flow. The high-ventilation made cigarettes less dangerous, at least that’s what the big companies told customers.
Up until the late 1970s, filtered cigarettes without ventilation were more popular in the United States, pharmacies throughout the country selling them. Now, they are as rare as a cigarette commercial, because tobacco companies have heavily relied on the products considered healthier than their whole-filter counterparts.
What Makes Filtered Cigarettes More Dangerous?
According to specialists, the holes in light filtered cigarettes intensify the combustion process, therefore producing more carcinogens. From there, the extra poisonous substances travel to the deeper parts of the lungs where adenocarcinomas form.
Before the new type of filtered cigarettes became popular, about a third of lung cancer cases were adenocarcinomas, now, the latter make up about 85 percent of total cases.
Removing Filters Altogether Is Not an Option, Either
Researchers believe more research is needed before proposing a drastic solution like completely eliminating filters. For now, they suggest tobacco manufacturers come to an accord regarding the size of the ventilation holes.
Then, the combustion process should be studied in more detail, to see if the size of the holes is directly proportional to the amount of toxic substances that reach the lungs. Last, the efficiency of non-perforated filters should be once again tested against that of their perforated counterparts.
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