What are the Chemicals Found in a Cigarette

There are over 4000 chemicals in cigarette smoke, many of which have not been tested with regard to the effects they have on the human body. From those substances that have been tested, many of them have been classified as “carcinogens’ meaning they play a role in the development of cancer. 

Any element that enters into the body that is not natural is perceived as a toxin and reacted to as such. In large quantities they become poisonous. The following is a list of such elements that are found in cigarettes.

Tar – not only stains your teeth, it is also the main cause of lung and throat cancer that results from smoking. About 70% of tar from cigarette smoke is deposited in the lungs.

Cyanide – used to make rat poison and was, throughout history, an agent for murder.

Arsenic – also used throughout history as an agent for murder and as the poison that kills in the gas chamber during executions.

Formaldehyde – used in the process of embalming to preserve dead bodies and has been classified as a human carcinogen. It also causes breathing and gastrointestinal problems.

Ammonia – found in household disinfectants like toilet cleaner and fertilizer. High levels of ammonia can cause lung damage and death.

Nicotine – this is the ingredient in cigarettes that causes addiction. It was once used in bug killer and is a deadly poison.  Small doses act as a stimulant to the brain. Large doses cause depression and inhibit nerve function.

Benzene – found in gasoline and is highly flammable. It is a known carcinogen and is associated with leukemia and other blood cancers. Breathing high enough levels of benzene can kill you while lower levels can cause drowsiness, rapid heart rate, headaches, tremors, confusion and unconsciousness. Drinking or eating benzene can cause vomiting, convulsions, and death. Long term exposure damages bone marrow, causes excessive bleeding and anemia, and depresses the immune system making you more susceptible to illness and disease.

Acetone – extremely flammable and the main ingredient in nail polish remover. Used as a superglue remover and degreaser. Inhaling acetone can cause liver damage and is fatal in large amounts. It has also caused liver, kidney, and nerve damage, as well as increased birth defects in animal studies.

Carbon Monoxide – a poisonous gas, rapidly fatal in large amounts. This is the exhaust that comes out of cars. Exposure can lead to toxicity of the central nervous system (brain and spinal cord) and heart.

It is amazing that anyone can smoke even one cigarette and continue to live. Regardless of how a person feels or if there are any outward symptoms of disease, it is virtually impossible to be a smoker and be healthy at the same time. Any time these kinds of toxins are inhaled or ingested, chemical and hormonal imbalances must occur. Over time, sickness and an early death will result.