Are Cigars Bad For Your Health-Exploring the Health Considerations of Cigars
Are Cigars Bad For Your Health
Classically denoting celebration and sophistication, visibility of cigars continues becoming more ubiquitous as tobacco prohibitions focus largely on cigarettes alone. However, most cigars contain comparable ingredients to cigarettes which may raise comparable health concerns minus the same degree of public awareness on risks. Does shifting away from cigarettes or limiting frequency of smoking cigars limit potential for harm significantly enough? Let’s break down contributing factors and latest conclusions.
Cigars feature wrapped bundles of fermented tobacco leaves rolled together rather than combined with filters or paper tubes. Unlike cigarettes, cigar tobacco undergoes a special fermentation process which may reduce levels of cancer-causing nitrosamines somewhat according to researchers. Most readily available varieties utilize wrappers made of tobacco leaves again rather than paper or other plants. Weighing upwards from 2 pounds per 1000 units compared to marlboros, cigars prove significantly meatier than popular cigarette brands as well.
In general, flavorings and additives tend to appear more prominently in machine-made or smaller cigarillos while premium hand-rolled cigars called long-fillers contain primarily tobacco leaves plus natural fermentation byproducts. Whether these distinctions make any difference healthwise still sparks some debate though. The bottom line is that regardless of source or style, cigars do expose users to tobacco combustion components during smoking. Let’s have a look at what’s released.
Byproducts of Tobacco Burning
Igniting any dried tobacco product generates several concerning compounds through combustion. Beyond stereotypical villains carbon monoxide and nicotine, cigar smoke also provides exposure to:
- Tar: Contains varying ratios of around 6000 constituents including potential carcinogens like benzopyrenes, nitrosamines and heavy metals
- Hydrogen Cyanide: Impedes cellular oxygen transport efficiency
- Ammonia: Respiratory irritant
- Formaldehyde: Classified human carcinogen
Specific proportions of exposure varies based on factors like leaves cured, fermentation method, humidity level, temperature reached and overall product age when smoked. Many specialized tobacco shops offer temperature controlled humidors to help regulate such variables for premium products whereas mass-produced machine-rolled cigars receive less precautions. However air samples from both styles lit up feature largely comparable chemical makeups. So how do these outputs functionally impact the human body?
Examining the Research on Cigar Health Risks
While less scrutiny exists on cigars directly since fewer people regularly smoke them compared to cigarettes, preliminary epidemiological data doesn’t paint a very rosy picture for safety. Here’s what observational assessments report:
- All Causes Mortality: Dose-dependent links between number of cigars smoked daily and earlier death from any natural cause based on studies like 2020 meta-analysis in BMC Public Health of over 10,500 participants
- Cancer Risk: Many studies including 2017 data in JAMA find cigar smokers have elevated incidents of lung cancer, oral cancer and esophageal cancer risks comparable to cigarette smokers when adjusted for number smoked per day
- Cardiovascular Impacts: Both heavy and moderate cigar smoking associates with developing coronary heart disease, ischemic stroke and peripheral arterial disease at rates approach near cigarette smoker levels (American Journal of Preventative Medicine, 2020)
- Blood Pressure & Circulation: Acute vascular relaxation impairment comparable among cigar, little cigar and cigarette users per 2010 comparison in Journal of Physiology and Pharmacology
- Lung Functioning: Similar elevated obstruction incidents among cigar only users versus cigarette only users as evidenced by 2020 Respiratory Investigation analysis
- Secondhand Exposure: 2020 study in Environment International reported poor indoor air quality and elevated toxic particulate levels in cigar smoking establishments
While smoking only 1-2 cigars per day indeed shows less risk elevation for factors like lung cancer and mortality than smoking 20 cigarettes daily, substantially heightened problems still emerge compared to non-smoking individuals as doses increase. Overall, both cigars and cigarettes feature tobacco as their source so logically share overlapping repercussions and clearly explain if Are Cigars Bad For Your Health.
Perspectives on Occasional Cigar Smoking
For the average non-smoker having a few celebratory cigars annually at special events only, risks do diminish due to minimized exposure. However, doctors caution that:
- Inhaling sidestream secondhand smoke from large cigars may match inhaling cigarette smoke directly based on similar particulate density
- Developing a reliable nicotine dependence can evolve gradually from occasional smoking patterns
- Celebratory smoking associations can slowly turn more frequent without conscious effort
Overall, the medical consensus prescribes abstaining from any form of routine tobacco consumptiongiven lack of known safe dosages. Cigar smoke regardless of source material still exposes users and bystanders to dozens of carcinogens and other concerning compounds. Yet with so many variables regarding frequency, inhalation habits and ingredient variability between products, individual odds could deviate quite substantially.
Are Cigars Bad For Your Health-All tobacco smoking features risks as combustion byproducts contain toxic and carcinogenic properties regardless of origin. And while occasional celebratory smoking falls substantially lower on harm potential than daily multi-pack consumption, no safe or recommended dosages exist. So men celebrating a birth announcement with cigars must weight short term traditions against long term health priorities for themselves and those around them breathing shared air. Ultimately personal circumstances, family histories and risk tolerance levels should drive decisions with doctor guidance rather than traditions or assumptions.