(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.) A new study shows that vaping could be streamlining cancer causing chemicals into young adults.
"A few years ago, we all thought that maybe these would be a good way to help people quit smoking," Mosaic Life Care Cardiac Surgeon Dr. Jane Schwabe said. "Knowing that anything you inhale that's not air is probably not great, but the more we learn and the more science that is done on them, we know there is a lot of really harmful chemicals in them."
While vaping is marketed as a healthier alternative to smoking cigarettes, it hasn't been approved by the FDA.
"We are not allowed to say that it's healthier, the FDA doesn't allow that," Kristina Montemayor from Muse Vape said.
Some argue vaping is not as harmful because vape juices have fewer number of chemicals and can be smoked with or without nicotine.
"Probolin glycol, vegetable glycerin, salt derived from nicotine and flavoring. so, four of five basic components compared to 20 different components of a cigarette, so it's a lot simpler," Montemayor said.
However, some of the chemicals from vapes and e-juice still might not be safe and health professionals are saying vaping targets a new generation of smokers.
"Most of them are manufactured overseas in China and Japan, where they're not regulated," Schwabe said. "Their number one flavor is bubble gum, number two is grape and three is cherry, so they're targeting the younger people."
While you have to be at least 18 to purchase vaping products in Missouri, doctors say teens who vape will be more likely to use other tobacco products later in life.
"Kids that vape are way more likely to then transition into cigarettes as they become young adults," Schwabe said. "So rather than keep people from smoking they're kind of being more a gateway thing to smoking."