Vapes, E-Cigs: Healthier Alternative to Cigarettes?

CORNING, N.Y. (18 NEWS) - Some who have tried vaping, also known as e-cigarettes, have said it's helped them quit traditional cigarettes.

They also argue that it's a healthier alternative, but not everyone agrees.

18 News visited Vape Flavourium on Corning's Market Street to find out more.

"It changed not only my life but the life of my family... my kids," Ex-smoker Jonas Fratarcangelo said.

Fratarcangelo, a Vape Flavourium customer, quit smoking after using vapes consistently, but what is vaping exactly?

It's a battery-powered electronic cigarette filled with flavored liquid that vaporizes when heated.  

"I don't think about cigarettes anymore," Fratarcangelo said. "I don't want cigarettes. I have more energy to enjoy life. I have three small kids that allow me to enjoy life, and make me want to enjoy life. You know, not be out of energy, or stink, or worry about my kids smelling like cigarettes."

As far as vaping being healthier for you compared to traditional cigarettes, reports are mixed, but many refer to it as the lesser of the two evils.

There are four ingredients in the liquid compared to 600 in a cigarette.

"There's vegetable glycerine, propylene glycol, nicotine - if you chose to buy it with nicotine in there - and then the flavor concentrates," Vape Flavourium Manager Ashley Krise said.

To some health experts, less harmful doesn't mean harmless despite the fewer ingredients.

The device has been available in the U.S. since around 2007, and not much is known on the long-term effects.

It's hard to tell how much of an influence it has on someone's health who's been smoking it for 30 to 40 years since it's only been around for about a decade.

Krise says, though, some customers stop in after being recommended by their doctors while others in the medical field are opposed.

For Fratarcangelo, it's worked, and he'll be sticking with it.
"I truly feel that by turning to vaping, there's no possible way you're life can't be better... that things can't be better, that you can't find a safe alternative," Fratarcangelo said.

Cigarettes have been reported to contain 4,000 chemicals with many cancer causing carcinogens.

E-cigs don't contain tobacco, but again, the long-term effects are unknown so it's best to speak with your doctor first.

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