Friday, December 4, 2015

Who is Still Using Tobacco in California?

 Data presented by annual UCLA health survey shows that the number of smokers in California has significantly dropped by almost one million in the past decade. However, tobacco use is still prevalent in several parts of California state. Thus smoking is prevalent in northern parts of the state.

According to the California Health Interview Survey, in 2014, nearly 11% of adults and young people smoked cigarettes. This rate has dropped from 15% in 2003. Figures show that today in California there are totally 3.4 million smokers. 

The state is fighting with tobacco use for years. There were implemented various measures which toghether helped to lower the smoking rates. For example, the California Department of Public Health launched impressive ads that pinpoint effects of smoking in a very bright way.

Besides this, California imposed restrictions on public places where smokers can light up. Earlier this year, there was proposed to increase legal smoking age to 21. The initiative was approved by the State Senate and  waits an approval from the Assembly.

Well, over three million smokers in California. Who are still smoking in conditions when the state actively fights with tobacco use?

A new survey gives the answer. Most smokers are with a low income and have a college degree. For example, nearly 8% of California residents in households with annual revenues of $100,000 or more were tobacco users in 2011 - 2014, compared to 18% of residents in households with revenues of $30,000 or less.

In this period nearly 7% of Californian people with a bachelor's or graduate degree were smokers, compared to 19% of those having just high school diploma.  Besides this, people from rural areas tend to smoke more than those in urban areas. Most Californians buy cigarettes online.

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Hallucinogenic Mushrooms May be Used for Quitting

Do you think that the best way to give up smoking for good is to turn to electronic cigarettes? Do not hurry to make this conclusion, because e-cigarettes are considered not helpful in quitting. There may appear other unusual ways to get rid of the habit. The results of the latest research will definately surprise you!

Have you ever heard about hallucinogenic mushrooms? Oh, sure. These mushrooms are considered psychedellic as they do contain psilocin and psilocybin, substances classified as psychedellic. These kind of mushrooms may cause a real euphoria in a user, that is why they are also called magic.

Let us turn to the main subject of the article. A group of researchers from John Hopkins university found that use of magic mushrooms are more effective in quitting smoking than other traditional and popular methods such as pills.

In the research participated heavy smokers who normally used over twenty cigs a day. In the course of the research they had to consume mushrooms, listen to theur favorite music, relax and concentrate on ‘inner experience’.  The obtained results showed that magic mushrooms had an 80% success rate compared to 35% rate for  varenicline, a popular cessation medication. Incredible.

Today researchers make many studies  and experiment with different hallucinogens not only with the aim to find a good way for quitting but to treat diseases. For example, they investigate LSD and MDMA use for treatment of a number of diseases. One of the studies tries to find out if MDMA is able to prolong lives of terminal patients with just few months to live. Other studies were focused on treating post-traumatic stress disorder.  This is quite noble aim for hallucinogens investigations, don't you think?

Scientists will continue their research in this field and we will wait for their final word :)

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Playing Tetris Reduces Cravings for Food, Coffee, Cigarettes

You want to quit, but it turns to be a hard thing as cravings always appear. This is a normal thing occuring in each smoker who wants to get rid of the habit. Cravings for cigarettes appear because smoker's body is addicted to nicotine and therefore craves for this substance.

Modern science tries to find ways to fight cravings so that a smokers could successfully stop the habit for good. Thus a new study comes with facinating results!

It was found that such a popular game as Tetris can be a great tool against nicotine addiction. In the course of the study scientists discovered that playing Tetris just three minites at a time helps to weaken cravings not only for cigarettes but also for alcohol, food and even such activities as sex and sleeping.

The main peculiarity of the research was that it was made not in a lab, but outside it, and it helped to monitor smokers in their ordinary everyday lives. Scientists were interested in their cravings and how they fluctuated in comparison to playing Tetris.

Tetris is one of oldest video games. It was released in 1989 and in short time became popular. It is still popular these days - in 2009 there were sold more than 35 million copies.

As you probably know, playing this game demands quick-thinking and patience to place tens of little coloured blocks on top of each other in a small screen.

The study was made by scientists from Plymouth University and Queensland University of Technology, Australia, who found that playing Tetris for several minutes affected smoker's desires for food, coffee, alcohol and cigarettes. The study lasted one week and during this period scientists discovered benefits of playing this game.

The results of the study show that playing Tetris helps to manage cravings! There was noted a reduction of cravings from 70% to 56%. Scientists suggest that Tetris effect occurs because during cravings a man imagines the object of his craving, and here the game helps to occupy the brain with a mental activity which reduces the craving.

These may be good news for those wanting to quit, because if Tetris proves its effectiveness in further studies then it will become a cheap cessation tool available to everyone.

Friday, July 3, 2015

Keep Your Kids Away from E-cigarettes!

 Adults always want to protect their kids from anything that is bad for a healthy and mental development: movies and video games with violence, drugs, alcohol and smoking. Past years governments made their significant contribution to growing a healthy nation by introduction of laws which keep away kids from tobacco. However, less is done about e-cigarettes and tobacco companies began to use this loophole by actively promoting these products.

Today more and more people consider that Big Tobacco targets kids and teens with e-cigarettes. E-cigarettes are accepted by health care experts as a new form of attracting youth to ensure addicted smokers for years.

Bad news is that latest data shows that the number of young people using e-cigarettes is higher than the number of those using regular cigarettes, and these numbers are growing.  The Food and Drug Administration (FDA)’s own Center for Tobacco Products and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) presented a report which reveals that in the past year the use of e-cigarettes has tripled among teens.

Though I write about smoking and I consider that smoker's rights must be respected, I do not welcome smoking among kids and teens. It is okay when a teen tries one cigarette, but it is bad when he smokes regularly. It does not matter what he chooses to smoke — cigarettes, e-cigarettes, hookah — all is bad for him! I totally support governments in protecting kids from smoking!

Reasons why kids use e-cigirettes are evident — it is trendy and tasty as they have sweet flavours and are considered safe.

Last year FDA proposed to regulate those products just like tobacco. To my opinion, this would be fair. However, the regulation was not formulated yet and tobacco companies make use of the situation and actively promote e-cigarettes, hookahs, and attract kids to smoking. Tobacco companies have no ban on e-cigarettes advertising and they advertise directly to kids. For example, they sponsor events for young people, place their ads to media mostly used by kids and especially advertise on web.

By these actions tobacco companies want to encourage a new generation to use tobacco and CDC report shows that this tactics is working.

I do consider that while FDA is thinking over its final decision on e-cigarettes regulation, it is up to you, dear parents, to protect your kids from these products! E-cigarettes are addictive and even more dangerous than tobacco because they contain an unknown amount of tozix substances.

Friday, June 26, 2015

What is Hookah and How to Use it?

 Shisha, hubble-bubble, goza, narghile are all names for hookah. This device for smoking was invented back in the 15th century in India and rapidly became popular in the Middel East. Over the past decade using hookah became a fashionable thing in the USA, especially among young people.

Newest study by Centers for Disease Control & Prevention reveals that hookah use increased almost two times among high school students in 2013 - 2014, from 5.2% to 9.4%, or from nearly 700,000 to 1.3 million students. Young people choose to use hookah because it is modern, cool, trendy, safe and tasty.

It was estimated that totally 100 million people smoke hookah today! Why it is so popular these days? Well, people say it is safer that cigarettes.

The hookah looks itself very exotic and this attracts people to try it. Modern hookahs look differently. Expensive devices are decorated with precious gems while cheap devices are simple.

At the top of device is found a bowl for making smoking mixtures from tobacco, molasses, honey, fruit pulp and different flavorings (peach, mint, cola, etc). Smokers are free to make different mixtures and experiment with flavours. Generally, experts say that in the mixture 5-10% are crushed tobacco leaves.

How to use hookah?

After placing in bowl all ingredients, smokers put a perforated aluminum foil above it, then put a cube of burning charcoal on top. Smoke is produced from tobacco through the foil. The smoke goes via body of the water pipe and gathers above the water in a bulb at the bottom of hookah.

To inhale the smoke it is necessary to use mouthpiece attached to bulb. Thus smoke goes through the water and then riches smoker's lungs. Some say that water bulb acts like a filter and does not allow toxic substanes go into the lungs. Water dissolves nicotine, but not all niconine found in tobacco is being dissolved and only part of it, therefore a session of smoking hookah equals using two-three cigarettes.

These days  water-pipe tobacco is not regulated by FDA and there are rumours that the situation may be changed in the nearest future. Most probably, the regulation would touch the legal age to use hookah.

Friday, June 12, 2015

Cigarette Prices in the USA 2015

Last year I wrote the article Cigarette Prices in the USA  which in short time became extremely popular. Due to the fact that it is 2015, I decided to write a new article using the latest information about the cigarette prices.

Well, just like in 2014, this year New York remains the US state with highest cigarettes prices due to $4.35 tax per pack. Then go Massachusetts with $3.51 per pack, Rhode Island with $3.50, Connecticut  with $3.40.

Cigarette Taxes in the USA 2015. CLICK TO ENLARGE

 At the end of list are found Georgia with $0.37, Louisiana with $0.36, Virginia with $0.30, and the state  Missouri has lowest cigarette tax of 0.17 cents per package. These are state taxes and if we take into considerstion also local taxes on cigarettes, we would understand why cigarette prices are high and why they vary.

Did you know that cigarettes in the USA were not taxed before 1920? However, by 1969 all American states imposed taxes on cigarettes! Though today those taxes are considered extremely high, states continue to increase their rates. It is awaful, yeah? But most smokers do not care a bit about American cigarette prices as they discovered that better way to save money is to buy cigarettes from the web.

You may ask where do those money from cigarette taxes go? Well, those money are directed to fund different social programs and systems, for example, schools.

Generally, the 2015 picture of cigarette taxes has seen not much change compared to 2014. 

I made a table which shows which is average price for cigarettes in US states. Take a look at it.


Thursday, May 21, 2015

Premium Cigarettes: Parker & Simpson

 Meet, Parker & Simpson, an amazing cigarettes brand of premium class by Imperial Tobacco. The tobacco company is famous for production of such premium brand as Davidoff and now promotes an absolutely new brand to conquer new segments of market. In comparison with Davidoff, Parker & Simpson are much affordable when it comes to price.

Parker & Simpson comes in two varieties: Parker&Simpson White (pack of creamy color) and Parker&Simpson Black (pack of black color).

When you you look at these packs, it becomes clear that the brand is for people who love elegancy and refinement. Both creamy and black packages have a big logo made of brands initials placed in center of the pack. On the cap are placed two lions and the title of the brand. The gold color on the pack makes reference to refinement, wealth and splendor.

Let us turn to cigarettes themselves. White paper is used in both varieties and both have gold lions on each stick. These are king size cigarettes with 83mm length and 9mm diameter. Imperial tobacco follows smokers demands and uses innovative tecnoligies to make smoking safer. Thus in Parker&Simpson is used a recessed charcoal filter which allows to prevent the tongue from touching the filter face. Besides this, filters have a perforation line which prevents tobacco smoke entering into lungs.

What are major differences between varieties?
Not only cigarette package do differ but certainly tobacco taste. The tobacco blend is just amazing.

Parker&Simpson White has 4.0mg tar and 0.4mg nicotine. It is smooth version for those who prefer mild taste. The taste of tobacco blend is pleasant and sweet.

Parker&Simpson Black has 7.0mg tar and 0.6mg nicotine. This version is stonger than White and provides a more intense tobacco taste. It is sweet and therefore is not harsh as many other brands of the same strength.

I think that Parker&Simpson White is perfect for tender ladies who love sweet aromas. And elegant gentlemen would appreciate mild and sweet taste of Parker&Simpson Black.

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Which Texas Cities Ban Smoking in Bars?

There is no statewide law in Texas which bans smoking in all public spaces, but more than 100 cities in the state have enacted locally some type of prohibition on smoking in public places, Here is the list of cities in Texas where smoking is banned in bars, restaurants and workplaces.

College Station
Copperas Cove
Corpus Christi
El Paso
Flower Mound
Horseshoe Bay
San Angelo
San Marcos
Spring Valley
University Park

Anti-smoking legislation is promoted exclusively by severe anti-smoking activists and their supporters. Only smokers talk about their rights. Sadly, but their rights are not taken into consideration. Not only regular cigarettes and cigars are removed from using in public spaces. Many cities legislation bans use of e-cigarettes as well, but Texas remains one of nine states in the USA that permit sale of e-cigarettes to minors.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Europe: Romania Has Weakest Anti-Smoking Legislation

If you are a smoker who is planning a trip to Europe, choose Romania, Austria, Greece,  Slovakia, Czech Republic, because in those countries smoking bans are not enforced or simply do not exist. Top enforcement countries are Spain, Lithuania, Hungary, Malta, Latvia. However, in the coming years the situation may be changed, therefore hurry up!

On April 14 there were revealed results of a new research which showed that those five countries in the European Union have weakest anti-smoking laws in the region. In these conditions the WHO is especially worried because in these countries secondhand smoke continues to present a real hazard to non-smokers.

Knowing that, SFP head Florence Berteletti told that Governments should be blamed for imposing no punishments on those who break no-smoking laws. Such countries as Ireland and the UK have introduced police trainings which helped to apply the anti-smoking laws. Ireland, UK along with Cyprus  do prohibit smoking in private vehicles where kids are present. Besides this, in Ireland there was launched a hotline, which receives calls from people who faced a law violation.

Ireland is the country which first in the world banned smoking at workplaces in 2004. It became an example for other countries to make a similar change.

In its turn, in 2005 the WHO developed a framework convention on tobacco control and it became first obligatory international health treaty on control of tobacco use. Its major aim is to protect people from secondhand smoke exposure in public places. It recommends that smoking should be totally prohibited in public places, especially in hospitals.

Martin Seychell, deputy director general of health and food safety at the European commission, says that secondhand smoke is especially hazardous, therefore the Comission pushes for legislation to encourage people to quit smoking and to denormalise the habit in the society. Smokers consider that smoking should be permitted in some bars, but Seychell says that these exceptions may create particular difficulties for the enforcement.

In order to keep pace with requirements of modern smokers, tobacco industry created e-cigarettes, which are not appreciated by health organizations who claim they are not safe. Malta, Slovakia and  Belgium banned use of those devices on public places.

EU countries should enforce up to May 2016 tobacco directive, which imposes new rules on how tobacco products should be manufactured and presented in the European Union. By now Romanians and visitors should enjoy smoking in public places, where they feel themselves comfortable.

Friday, April 3, 2015

The X-Files: Smoking Man is Back

Most popular TV series of 90s, the X-Files, is back after 13 years of pause, and with it returns most mysterios personage, the Smoking Man. We do not know his name, but his role is very important in the movie. He is always with a cigarette, therefore is just called The Smoking Man.

This week David Duchovny, who plays agent Mulder in The X-Files, took part in Late Show With David Letterman. During the show he told that the movie is back with its two supporting characters: The Smoking Man played by William B. Davis and agent's boss Walter Skinner, played by Mitch Pileggi. He said:
“Mitch Pileggi will come back, and the Cigarette-Smoking Man—if this means anything to anyone—will be coming back.”

As you know, The X-Files is full of strange and shadowy personages, but the Smoking Man is considered most shadowy of them. As you remember, at the end of the series he was shot with a rocket out of a helicopter.

We all thought that he was died, but seems like we have been mistaken. He survived like a real iconic personage in a Hollywood movie. We also thought that 13 years ago the X-Files ended and we never knew that after several years it would turn back on TV screens.

The production of new six episode event series would start in the upcoming summer.

First episode of The X-Files appeared on TV on September 10, 1993, and it was welcomed positively by the public. The TV series received positive reviews not only in the USA but in many countries worldwide. The new episodes would be directed by famous Chris Carter and would feature David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson playing the well-known FBI agents.

Friday, March 6, 2015

Smoking Bans Do Not Influence Smokers to Quit

Smokers are getting used to the idea that they should step outside at restaurants and bars to light up. It is interesting to know if smokers were inspited by smoking bans to use less cigarettes or to quit their habit for good. A Canadian research gives some answers.

Sylvia Kairouz, an associate professor in Concordia’s Department of Sociology and Anthropology, along with a group of researchers got interested in these questions and made a study about it. The results were recently published in Nicotine & Tobacco Research. The researchers found that not much smokers changed their habits after introduction of smoking bans. However, they suggest that smoking bans may have a greater impact if additionally to use other anti-smoking measures.

Kairouz says that a non-smoking person at home prevents a smoker from lighting up and this factor plays a more important role than the law. It influences smoker even much more to not smoke inside.

One of largest Canada cities Quebec adopted smoking ban in May 2006, and researchers were analyzing data since this date.

 Due to numerous researches proving the high danger of secondhand smoke on non-smokers, different health care providers and anti-smoking activists started to talk about the importance of protecting kids, older people and non-smoking adults from tobacco smoke.

Nowadays people became aware about dangers of secondhand smoke  on their health and they try to avoid it. From other side, authorities are passing stricter laws that do not allow cigarettes use in public spaces. You may see that many large cities in the USA do prohibit smoking in parks. Generally speaking, smoking ban becomes a norm not only in America but worldwide.

Kairouz says that lack of information about secondhand smoke effects was making smokers feel themselves comfortable while puffing behind someone. And people behind a smoker felt themselves comfortable. Now the things have changed. Smokers know that smoke from their cigarette affects others and avoid lighting up in presence of others.

Researchers say that major factors that influenced smokers to quit are not smoking ban in public spaces but examples of successful quitting among family members or friends.

Kairouz concluded that approach to fight smoking and its effects must be complex and there is a need to focus on public health services for people who are trying to quit.

Friday, February 13, 2015

History Of Tobacco In London

In 1573 Sir Francis Drake brought first tobacco to England from the New World. However, British sailors were already familiar with this product as they were getting it from  Portuguese and Spanish sailors.  They used tobacco for smoking or for chewing.

Francis Drake is the man who discovered how to deal with tobacco so that it could be transported to the European continent and stored.

Formation of East India Company helped tobacco appear in differetn countries and it became widely available. The increase of tobacco popularity resulted in huge income for English buget and the country certainly enjoyed it. At this time tobacco was expensive and smokers used small clay pipes to smoke the dried leaves. Even today those small pipies can be found on the shores of Thames.

In 1619, King James I issued an edict which imposed that all tobacco which goes to England must enter the country via London. Besides this, pipes should be made in the country by local pipe-makers. Thus there was created Tobacco-pipe Makers of London and Westminster and England and Wales. Today it is called The Worshipful Company of Tobacco Pipe Makers & Tobacco Blenders. Yeah, nowadays, in London, pipes are still manufacured.

In 1904 Alfred Dunhill invented a pipe designed for motorists, and theree years later he  opened his first tobacco shop in London. In 20s he opened tobacco shops in Paris and New York. Generally, he disliked quality of pipies sold in England and decided to open his own workshop in 1910. Today Dunhill is symbol of quality and luxury. Dunhill cigarettes are expensive and are associated with elegance and success.

It may seem that Englishmen love only pipes. In fact, when cigarettes appeared at the beginning of 20th century, they fell in love with them! Smoking pipes was an expensive habit, which could afford only wealthy people, Besides this the taste was strong. But cigarettes were milder and cheaper, therefore they managed to conquer Englishmen's hearts. Cigarettes became very popular after WWI.

 In 17th century wealthy English smokers could use snuff, a flavoured tobacco which is taken by sniff into the nostrils. Todays snuff lost its popularity but still may be found in some shops.

With such a rich tobacco history, London is a city with great number of famous smokers. Sir Winston Churchill, Oscar Wilde, members of royal family, rock stars, models, and this list may be continued and continued.

Friday, January 23, 2015

Flavored Tobacco: Captain Black Little Cigars

Usually I write about cigarettes. However, today I am going to write about cigars, or exactly say, about little cigars. They have filters and look just like cigaretts, therefore deserve my attention. The talk is about Captain Black Little Cigars which have a variety of flavours.

The brand is manufactured by Lane Limited, a subdivision of Scandinavian Tobacco Group, the tobacco company famous for aromatic pipe tobacco, cigarillos and little cigars.

Little history.
Since 1973, Lane Limited started to ship its aromatic tobacco under the brand name of Captain Black to many countries worldwide. Thus smokers from around the world got a perfect possibility to enjoy rich and aromatic pipe tobacco! The high quality of premium tobacco used in the Captain Black was widely appreciated, and very quickly became best selling pipe tobacco brand in the USA.

At the beginning of 21th century, the manufacturer began to produce new form of Captain Black's tobacco: filtered cigars. These products became extremely popular because they are made of the same premium tobacco and have this sweet aromatic flavor as cigars do.

Captain Black Little Cigars have several aromas: from mild and mellow to powerful and intense. These cigars would be highly appreciated by smokers who give their preference to refined tobacco and exhilarating sweetness. The blend in made up of European, Indonesian and Philippine tobaccos.

Captain Black Little Cigars look like regular filter cigarettes. They are 0.8mm in diamenter and 98mm lengthwise. These are cigars and their tobacco is rolled in brown paper! They are packed in a compact soft black package which easily goes into any pocket and handbag.

The tobacco company uses innovations in the production of its cigars in order to satisfy modern customer's needs. You will see that Captain Black Little Cigars have a perforation line running around the filters, which improves filtration by allowing to inhale more air.

This is tasty but heavy tobacoo product, and if you got used to smooth smoking you may find them very strong.

Captain Black Little Cigars varieties:

Captain Black Cherise with a rich cherry aroma.

Captain Black Classic with a slight vanilla aroma.

Captain Black Dark Crema with an intense cacao aroma.

Captain Black White Crema with vanilla aroma.

Friday, January 2, 2015

Capsule Cigarettes: Winston cool Xspression

Winston is one of most popular cigarette brands in the world. It was introduced in 1954 by R.J.Reynolds Tobacco Company. It was the first cigarettes brand produced with filters in the USA. The brand managed rapidly to conquer the tobacco market by its quality. In 1956 Winston was called best cigarettes brand and in 1965 it became best selling cigarettes brand in the USA.

The name of the brand comes from Winston-Salem, the city located in North Carolina state, USA. The city is the major center of American tobacco manufacturing and namely here was opened first R.J.Reynolds tobacco plant.

Between 1966 and 1972 the brand enjoyed great success with the slogan "Winston tastes good like a cigarette should".

Today Winston enjoys great popularity as well. It remains in top of most popular cigarettes brands in many countries of the world. The brand is represented by a number of varieties, many of which have latest innovative developments.

Winston cool Xspression is the latest novelty which contains menthol capsule! Experienced smokers know what capsule gives to smoking. Beginners, probabaly, no. Let us explain. The capsule is included in or near the cigarette filter. When it is crushed it releases additional menthol! As a smoker, I may say that the sensation while smoking such cigarettes is really unusual! Menthol released from capsule leaves more cooling and pleasant sensation than regular menthol cigarettes.

Today cigarettes with menthol capsules may be found in the ranges of many cigarettes brands and Winston keeps up with the times by including Winston cool Xspression in its assortment. It contains 5.0mg tar and 0.4mg nicotine and has rather a mild strength.

These capsule cigarettes with menthol taste are perfect for those who like novelties and smooth taste. Winston cool Xspression are modern and have a compact stylish pack. Worth trying.