Whats in a cigarette?

Here is a list of some of the key ingredients that make up today's cigarettes


There are more than 4,000 ingredients in a cigarette other than tobacco. Common additives include yeast, wine, caffeine, beeswax and chocolate. Here are some other, more concerning ingredients:

  • Ammonia: Household cleaner
  • Angelica root extract: Known to cause cancer in animals
  • Arsenic: Used in rat poisons
  • Benzene: Used in making dyes, synthetic rubber
  • Butane: Gas; used in lighter fluid
  • Carbon monoxide: Poisonous gas
  • Cadmium: Used in batteries
  • Cyanide: Deadly poison
  • DDT: A banned insecticide
  • Ethyl Furoate: Causes liver damage in animals
  • Lead: Poisonous in high doses
  • Formaldehiyde: Used to preserve dead specimens
  • Methoprene: Insecticide
  • Megastigmatrienone: Chemical naturally found in grapefruit juice
  • Maltitol: Sweetener for diabetics
  • Napthalene: Ingredient in mothballs
  • Polonium: Cancer-causing radioactive element
  • Methyl isocyanate: Its accidental release killed 2000 people in Bhopal, India in 1984

Cigarette contents 'tweaked'

The tobacco industry has 'tweaked' the cigarette producing process over the last hundred years or so to get smokers hooked more effectively. Take the addition of Ammonia for example. Often thought of as a toilet bowl cleaner, it's an additive in cigarettes for the simple reason that it helps your lungs absorb cigarette smoke more quickly and so you get more of a 'hit' from your cigarette.

How about the addition of chocolate? Well that's there to take away the bitter and potentially off-putting taste of a 'natural' tobacco.

What does a cigarette contain? on Kismet-Hypno, Free stop smoking resources page

What about nicotine itself? Is a stimulant in small doses, and forms part of the addiction. But in large doses, nicotine is actually a depressant. If you think about the cycle for a second, you begin to see that as you begin to smoke, you get addicted to the stimulant part of the nicotine hit. Then as you get more and more 'dependant' on this you smoke more and gradually begin to feel the depressive effects of a larger dose of nicotine, which in turn often leads smokers to smoke more. Hence the cycle continues and the grip of a cigarette tightens.

The whole design is there to make it as difficult as possible for smokers to get off cigarettes, and the industry succeeds in doing this very well! The product that you have come to know as the modern day cigarette is actually a cocktail of ingredients, many deadly, and sophisticated marketing specifically tailored to get you hooked and keep you there.

In America, many of the poisonous chemicals in cigarettes are governed by strict federal regulation laws - except in the instance of tobacco products.

Does it surprise you to consider that a product that not only allows the smoker to ingest more than 4000 hazardous compounds over 70,000 times a year, but also affects members of the general public via the means of second-hand smoke, is allowed to be sold legally and is actually exempt from many of the laws and legislation that should in theory outlaw it? Could this possibly be due to the huge income generated through taxes levied on the product?

We'll leave it to you to decide on that point but also consider this, around 100,000[2] deaths a year are contributed to smoking and smoking-related illness and disease.

"The witch's brew of poisons invades the organs and tissues of smokers and nonsmokers, adults and children, born as well as unborn, and causes cancer, emphysema, heart disease, fetal growth retardation and other problems during pregnancy. The harm inflicted by all other addictions combined pales in comparison. Smoking-related illness, for example, claims in a few days as many victims as cocaine does in a whole year." - Quit Smoking Support

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