Monday, May 20, 2013

Kinds Of Herbal Cigarettes

As tobacco taxes climb, alternative cigarette fillings are gaining popularity.

As tobacco smokers face pressures on two fronts---a public health outcry and climbing tobacco taxes---herbal cigarettes are gaining in popularity. Some are sold in the roll-your-own loose leaf variety, while others are pre-made cigarettes. Their purported health benefits are questionable, but they can relieve a smoker's conscience and in many cases his wallet.

Psychoactive Cigarettes

Certain smoking products colloquially known as "spice" cigarettes contain ingredients that mimic the action of THC, the main psychoactive ingredient in marijuana. Though they purport to achieve these effects through an herbal blend, their primary active ingredients are known as synthetic cannabinoids. Spice cigarettes are sold in smoke shops under brand names like K2, Spice and Black Magic. These products are legal under federal law in the United States, though some states have prohibited them. They are not revealed by traditional drug tests.

A doctor writing for the Napa Valley Register warns that these products can be considerably more potent than marijuana itself, so smokers often find themselves under effects much greater than what was expected.

Addiction Reduction Cigarettes

Some herbal cigarettes are marketed as quit-smoking tools. The Philippine brands Stop-a-Habit and Herbala are made from a blend of 36 Asian, African and South American plants. The company founder told the Phillipine Daily Inquirer in 2008 that transferring the habit of smoking to the less-harmful herbal cigarettes can be an initial step toward quitting smoking altogether. In addition, he said, they can induce restful sleep and relieve gastric troubles or sore throats.

According to a BBC News report, though, the University of Vienna has found that these "vegetable-based" cigarettes can themselves be harmful, due to the carbon monoxide and tar that smokers ingest.

Flavored Herbal Cigarettes

Herbal cigarettes come in a variety of flavors, including the menthol-flavored that cigarettes are often sold. Since flavored (tobacco) cigarettes were outlawed in 2009 in the U.S., flavored herbal cigarettes provide smokers an alternative. Herbal cigarettes marketed as quit-smoking tools include hints of passion flower, wild lettuce and marshmallow. Others have a more earthy, leafy flavor, mimicking the taste of marijuana.

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