According to a new vaping study by a team of Bavarian scientists, vaping even zero-nicotine e-liquids helps reduce those annoying cravings for a tobacco cigarette. As millions of smokers and former-smokers can confirm, quitting smoking takes much more than just sheer “willpower.” And vaping may be the key to quitting permanently.
The scientists based their study on 2016 research by the UK Royal College of Physicians which claims that vaping is 95 percent less harmful than smoking. So, if vaping is so good for your health, why aren’t more people doing it? According to the research, the smoker’s brain is pre-conditioned to respond to a variety of stimuli which trigger the nasty cravings, and vaping helps address those triggers in a healthy and safer way.
Outline of the Bavarian vaping study
The vaping study The Importance of Conditioned Stimuli in Cigarette and E-Cigarette Craving Reduction by E-Cigarettes is published online for the world to see. The scientists began by conducting a series of tests on a small sample group of 81 participants – each were current smokers who had never tried an electronic cigarette before in their lives.
After a brief one-week period of experimentation, the participants switched to vaping while the scientists monitored their reactions to several different stimuli associated with triggering smokers’ cravings, including:
- Social triggers, such as talking on the phone or driving a car.
- Aromatic triggers, such as the different “smells” of various brands of cigarette smoke and e-liquid vapor.
- Visual triggers, such as witnessing someone nearby smoking a cigarette or vaping.
- Hand-to-mouth triggers, which are otherwise known as an addiction to oral fixation.
- Emotional triggers and changes in mood
- Times of day triggers, such as vaping or smoking after a meal or with that first cup of coffee in the morning
The researchers in the Bavarian vaping study would monitor the participants’ reactions to these common triggers while being allowed to vape different e-liquids of varying nicotine concentrations of zero-nicotine, 2.4 percent, and 3.6 percent. In some scenarios, the sample group even wore blindfolds.
What the scientists discovered is that vaping even zero-nicotine e-liquids helps reduce smokers’ cravings significantly across nearly all areas of associated triggers. The cravings were reduced with or without the use of a blindfold, and they tended to be greater when the subject was vaping e-liquids with higher concentrations of nicotine. Still, zero-nicotine e-liquids provided substantial reductions in smokers’ cravings overall.