According to an announcement by Krishnamoorthi’s office, the proposed bill would restrict nicotine content to over 20 milligrams per milliliter with the aim of making the products “significantly less addictive and appealing to youth”.

In the EU, where such a regulation has already been set in place by the local Tobacco Products Directive, experts have argued that the measure has been counterproductive to public health.

“As a concerned parent, I am committed to preventing a new generation of nicotine addicts,” said Krishnamoorthi, who has been at the helm of a congressional investigation into youth vaping. “Capping the concentration of nicotine in e-cigarettes is integral to ending the youth vaping epidemic by making these products less addictive, less appealing to youth, and less harmful to public health. After all, while flavors hook kids, it’s nicotine that nets them and pulls them on the boat into a lifelong vaping habit and addiction.”

Meanwhile, across the EU, where such a regulation has already been set in place by the local Tobacco Products Directive (TPD) public health experts have argued that the measure has been counterproductive to public health.

In fact, health experts in the UK are concerned, as the rapid growth in the numbers of people switching from smoking to vaping has dropped significantly. Despite the fact that Public Health England has openly endorsed the safer alternatives as smoking cessation tools, the number of smokers switching per year has dropped from 800,000 to 100,000.

“The rapid growth in e-cigarette use has come to an end while over a third of smokers have still never tried e-cigarettes, saying the main reasons are concerns about the safety and addictiveness of e-cigarettes. It’s very important smokers realise that vaping is much, much less harmful than smoking,” said ASH (Action on Smoking and Health) in a 2017 press release.

Low nicotine e-cigs make smokers puff harder and more often

A 2018 study published in the journal Addiction last week, confirmed these suspicions, indicating that reducing nicotine levels in e-cigarettes, may lead to vapers using their devices more intensely, and therefore increase their exposure to toxins.

“The results of our study suggest that smokers who want to switch to vaping may be better to start with higher, rather than lower, nicotine levels to reduce compensatory behaviour and the amount of e-liquid used.”

Researchers from London South Bank University, studied the behaviour of 20 e-cigarette users and found that unfortunately this is the case. Vapers using low nicotine e-liquid in their devices not only puffed more deeply and more frequently, but also increased the power of their vaping devices when possible.

“Use of a lower nicotine concentration e‐liquid may be associated with compensatory behaviour (e.g., higher number and duration of puffs) and increases in negative affect, urge to vape, and formaldehyde exposure,” concluded the study.

“The results of our study suggest that smokers who want to switch to vaping may be better to start with higher, rather than lower, nicotine levels to reduce compensatory behaviour and the amount of e-liquid used.”

Ex-smokers should not start with low-nicotine NRTs

The researchers found that despite this ‘compensatory’ behaviour, the participants who used low nicotine were still unable to obtain a satisfying level of nicotine, and despite the fact that research indicates that both high and low nicotine e-cigarettes are safer than regular cigarettes. To this effect, lead study author Dr. Lynne Dawkins, concluded that ex-smokers should refrain from starting off with low levels of nicotine.

Read Further: CNN

Higher Levels of Nicotine are More Efficient for Smoking Cessation

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