With its fruity flavors, shisha is often considered a substitute for cigarettes. However, this type of smoking is equally harmful to health, since it promotes the onset of type 2 diabetes and is linked to obesity.
The shisha smoker inhales 125 times more smoke, 25 times more tar, 2.5 times more nicotine and 10 times more carbon monoxide than when he smokes a cigarette, already revealed a 2016 US study. Again , research from Brighton and Sussex Medical School (United Kingdom) demonstrate the dangerous nature of the hookah. Shisha smokers are twice as likely to suffer from type 2 diabetes, metabolic syndrome or dyslipidemia – when blood cholesterol or lipid levels are abnormally high.
With its fruity and sweet taste, the user is wrongly thinking that it is less harmful than cigarettes. The belief that its smoke is less toxic because the device is designed to “purify” tobacco smoke by passing it through water is also widespread. But with this “water pipe”, the smoker inhales much more than by sucking in the smoke of a cigarette. According to the authors of this new study, “a single smoking session can be equivalent to more than one pack of cigarettes”.
The scientists studied a sample of 10,000 people in Iran, consisting of non-smokers, former smokers, cigarette smokers and hookah smokers. Result? “Obesity, the metabolic syndrome, diabetes or dyslipidemia are diseases that we found mostly in hookah smokers,” said in a statement Dr. Gordon Ferns, who led the study.
“It’s unclear why the hookah is associated with obesity and diabetes,” he says. It is possible that the toxins in the smoke stimulate an inflammatory response that makes the tissues more resistant to the effects of insulin, a hormone regulating glucose in the blood. However, it is also possible that the narghile is associated with other social behaviors that lead to weight gain. ”
The researcher stresses the importance of reminding the public of the risks associated with shisha. “The use of flavored tobaccos can be particularly appealing to young people. Hookah smoking should not be treated differently than cigarette smoking. “