Why Vaping Beats Out Smoking (Both Tobacco and Marijuana)
Smoking stinks. Smoking kills. And smoking has a much better alternative. That alternative is vaping, a movement that’s gone far enough beyond a trend that even Big Tobacco companies are investing in e-cigarettes. Vaping can provide a superior experience to smoking, both for tobacco as well as marijuana, while still delivering nicotine or THC.
What, Exactly, is Vaping?
Vaping and smoking may appear similar at a glance, but they are actually quite different. Smoking involves inhaling smoke created from burning a substance, while vaping involves inhaling a vapor created by heating a substance.
Vaping devices run the gamut from smaller vape pens to larger, tabletop devices designed for at-home marijuana use. Devices include a battery or other power source, a heating element that heats your substance of choice, and a chamber in which to place the substance.
Vaping tobacco is done by purchasing tobacco e-liquid, while vaping marijuana can be done by vaping ground-up dry herb or cannabis oil.
Why Vaping is Safer than Smoking
The main reason vaping is safer than smoking has to do with combustion. When cigarettes are lit on fire, they produce more than 4,000 chemicals, many of which are toxic. Cigarette smoke contains 43 carcinogens and some 400 additional toxins. The collection consists of things like carbon monoxide, tar, ammonia, arsenic, formaldehyde, hydrogen cyanide and DDT.
When marijuana is lit on fire in the form of a joint or while using a bong or other combustible method, it, too, produces a slate of dangerous chemicals similar to those found in cigarette smoke. Smoking marijuana may even be more hazardous than smoking tobacco, due to the more extensive and deeper inhalation and the higher combustion temperature.
Marijuana smoke produces three times the amount of tar and five times the amount of carbon monoxide produced by cigarette smoke. It’s also been shown to contain higher levels of hydrogen cyanide and ammonia than tobacco smoke.
How Much Safer is Vaping?
The lack of combustion makes vaping significantly safer than smoking. How much safer? A Public Health England report estimated vaping is about 95 percent less harmful than smoking cigarettes. While the report did not specifically look at how much safer vaping marijuana was compared to smoking it, one would expect a similar assessment.
Another report, this one published in European Addiction Research, ranked various nicotine products by how harmful they were. Cigarettes easily ranked at the top, earning the highest score of 100. Vaping products ranked in at less than 16. Again, marijuana was not included in the research, but one may again expect vaping marijuana to fall on the low end of the scale with other non-combustible products.
What about the Taste?
In addition to being safer than smoking, vaping is also known to be much tastier than smoking. That’s because the flavors of the substance you’re vaping are not competing with all those chemicals found in cigarette or marijuana smoke.
The flavor of what you’re vaping, of course, is only as good as the substance you choose. Choosing the best e-juice and a high-quality marijuana option will obviously net you the purest, cleanest flavor.
What’s the best e-juice? Those who appreciate authentic tobacco taste would vote for an e-juice made from real tobacco, like the brand Black Note. Rather than crafting a synthetic flavoring that is supposed to mimic tobacco, Black Note naturally extracts tobacco flavoring from real tobacco leaves.
You have a couple of choices when it comes to vaping marijuana, with the best choice based on your personal preference. You can go for dry herb vaping, which involves grinding up the marijuana into small particles and inhaling the vapor produced by moisture that’s released when the herb is heated.
Another option is vaping marijuana concentrate, with butane hash oil (BHO) being the most common choice in this category. Also known as crumble, nectar and shatter, BHO contains a concentrated mix of marijuana with very high levels of THC. The average BHO has been shown to contain around 60 percent THC, notably higher than the 15 percent or so found in regular marijuana.
Those who opt for vaping BHO want to use caution, especially if you’re new to vaping marijuana. A very small amount will go a long way, producing the same effects as a larger amount of regular marijuana would.
More on Vaping Devices
The type of vaping device you want to choose depends on what you’re vaping. Vaping devices for e-juice are all compatible with any type of e-juice you select, whether you go for real tobacco or a synthetic flavoring. That means the playing field is wide open.
Vape pens are one of the most popular devices, consisting of a rechargeable battery, a heating element, and refillable chamber for your e-juice. All-in-one e-juice vaping devices consist of a single unit with the battery, heating element and e-juice tank all fused together.
Some simpler vaping devices come with pre-filled, disposable cartridges that need to be replaced with the same type of cartridge.
Vape mods are larger, bulkier vaping devices that can get rather complicated. Advanced vapers may be fans of these devices, which can be modified and enhanced to suit their specific needs.
The type of vaping device to use for marijuana depends on if you’re vaping dry herb or BHO, as different devices are designed to handle different substances. You can find vape pens that are compatible with one or the other. You can also find all-in-one marijuana vaping devices that come with pre-filled marijuana cartridges.
Tabletop marijuana vaping devices are also on the market, again available in versions used for either dry herb vaping or marijuana concentrate. Some feature a wall plug-in instead of a rechargeable battery.
While standard vape pens and e-juice devices rely on conduction heating, you can also find marijuana devices that use convection heating. Conduction heating devices work by directly exposing the substance to the heating element to produce a vapor. Convection heating devices work by pushing heated air over the substance, without direct contact between the substance and the heating element.
No Right Way or Wrong Way to Vape
One of the beauties of vaping is the multitude of options available, allowing you to customize your experience to suit your style. Those new to vaping can keep it simplest by choosing a quality vape pen starter kit and advancing from there. No matter what options you choose, there really is no right or wrong way to vape. Simply choosing to vape automatically treats you to a cleaner, safer, more flavorful option that beats out smoking every time.