From: Business Insider
Sarah Boseley, The Guardian
E-cigarettes are more effective than nicotine patches and gum in helping people to quit smoking, according to a study that challenges the negative views of some public health experts.
The issue of e-cigarettes has become a public health battleground, alarming those who think that their marketing and use in public places where smoking is banned risks re-normalizing tobacco.
Supporters say the vast majority of smokers are using e-cigarettes to kick their tobacco habit and that the health consequences of nicotine use without the tar from cigarettes appear, as yet, to be far less of a problem.
The study, by a team from University College London, looked at attempts of nearly 6,000 people to stop smoking and found that, while engaging with the NHS smoking cessation services was the most effective way to quit, using e-cigarettes beat nicotine replacement therapy as well as the efforts of people to stop with no help at all.
Professor Robert West of the department of epidemiology and public health, the senior author of the study, said that it was extremely important to find out how well e-cigarettes worked as a quitting tool. “It really could affect literally millions of lives. We need to know,” he said.