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Inhaling Flavouring Chemicals

Discussion in 'Health, Safety and Vaping' started by Kate, Oct 2, 2008.

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  1. Kate

    Kate Moved On

    Jun 26, 2008
    There is at least one chemical that is GRAS (generally regarded as safe) which can cause lung disease when inhaled. When rating chemicals for GRAS they are checked for safety to eat, however, that doesn't mean they are safe to inhale. Some food industry workers have developed lung disease from breathing concentrations of particular food flavouring.

    Apparently "the flavorings industry has estimated that over a thousand flavoring ingredients have the potential to be respiratory hazards due to possible volatility and irritant properties (alpha, beta-unsaturated aldehydes and ketones, aliphatic aldehydes, aliphatic carboxylic acids, aliphatic amines, and aliphatic aromatic thiols and sulfides)." NIOSH Topic: Flavorings-Related Lung Disease: Exposures to Flavoring Chemicals | CDC/NIOSH

    The chemical that came to my attention is diacetyl. It gives a buttery taste to food and also "occurs naturally in alcoholic beverages". Diacetyl - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia Workers in some food factories have been diagnosed with lung disease because of diacetyl.

    "The main respiratory symptoms experienced by workers affected by fixed airways obstruction include cough (usually without phlegm) and shortness of breath on exertion. These symptoms typically do not improve when the worker goes home at the end of the workday or on weekends or vacations. The severity of the lung symptoms can range from only a mild cough to severe cough and shortness of breath on exertion. Usually these symptoms are gradual in onset and progressive, but severe symptoms can occur suddenly. Some workers may experience fever, night sweats, and weight loss. Before arriving at a final diagnosis, doctors of affected workers initially thought that the symptoms might be due to asthma, chronic bronchitis, emphysema, pneumonia, or smoking. Severe cases may not respond to medical treatment. Affected workers generally notice a gradual reduction or cessation of cough years after they are no longer exposed to flavoring vapors, but shortness of breath on exertion persists. Several with very severe disease were placed on lung transplant waiting lists. Workers exposed to flavorings may also experience eye, nose, throat, and skin irritation. In some cases, chemical eye burns have required medical treatment." NIOSH - Preventing Lung Disease in Workers Who Use or Make Flavorings - Publication No. 2004 - 110

    So if you can, check what is in your eliquid, diacetyl is definately a baddie. Watch out for symptoms and be aware that there might be other chemicals that cause similar reactions.

    I've emailed LorAnn about their flavourings and they say they do not use diacetyl in any of them.
  2. smoking gnu

    smoking gnu Senior Member ECF Veteran

    Sep 8, 2008
    Inhaling nicotine doesn’t do your lungs any favours. Apparently nicotine paralyses the tiny hairs that help clean your lungs. This plays a big part in the damage that smoking tobacco causes. It leaves your lungs more susceptible to all the crap in tobacco smoke. Hopefully there isn’t that crap with e smoking.
  3. TropicalBob

    TropicalBob Vaping Master ECF Veteran

    Jan 13, 2008
    Port Charlotte, FL USA
    A BIG problem, Kate, is that we don't know what is used to flavor the flavored e-liquids. I have a Janty "Almond" flavor vial. What's in it? I have no idea. There is no ingredient list.

    I guess -- and certainly hope -- that the chemists formulating our liquids have more knowledge than we're likely to get searching Wikipedia entries (I'm not belittling your links, but you've seen the assumptions of "knowledge" posted on this forum by some).

    We have two choices: 1. Quit e-smoking; 2. Hope the manufacturers of liquids are smart enough not to kill their consumers.

    I'm betting on 2.

    And I'm more worried about corporate greed making ingredient substitutions than I am a faulty ingredient list to begin with. Look at China's terrible greed in just the past year. Count the dead ...
  4. Kate

    Kate Moved On

    Jun 26, 2008
    We have some ingredient lists for commercial eliquid on a thread here - ************************************************************************************************************* It is by no means reliable or necessarily complete for all eliquid. Ludo spoke up for Janty so he's putting his word on the accuracy of their list and he says they have had lab tests. Pillbox has published his list as professional lab tested findings. Personally I'm most encouraged by Pillbox's efforts to secure quality of supply, the lab he commissioned issued recommendations for improvements but they didn't find any currently known hazards, apart from nicotine of course.

    I mostly live in hope too, lol. I'm not giving up esmoking or advocating that anyone else should, I still think we are better off than with smoking. We mustn't get complacent with manufacturers however, not all commercial enterprises can be trusted as you say TBob. I favour those who are prepared to share information with us to make us informed consumers rather than treating us as trusting dummies.

    Hope, faith and trust will not trump corporate greed, only scientific checks and regulation can win here. In the meantime we can only be vigilant and examine all possible risks.
  5. jimldk

    jimldk Super Member ECF Veteran

    So far I have no reported cases of Diacetyl poisoning in my group of patients..everyone seems to be okay and lungs examination is events so as to say...I will keep an eye out on that...

    Thanks Kate for the heads up.....all this will be helpful.....the more the info, the better will be my armour...:)
  6. Kate

    Kate Moved On

    Jun 26, 2008
    No problem Dr Loi, it's good for us all to be informed on health matters. I'm glad that you are monitoring your esmoking patients (and that you've not encountered any adverse effects), a professional overview is very valuable.

    Do your patients use a certain brand of eliquid or is there a mixture of use?
  7. jimldk

    jimldk Super Member ECF Veteran

    Thanks again Kate....

    My patients (and me included) uses variety of liquids...I am trying to get the best type and doing blind studies as well...the experiment is in variable stages now...getting feedback and looking out for side effects but I doubt it will show any at this stage..still too early to know....:(
  8. jarvis

    jarvis Senior Member ECF Veteran

    Apr 28, 2008
    Hi Doc, this is a bit off topic, but have you done any research into the dangers of the smoke produced when the little synthetic thread wick in the atomizer coil starts to burn? I've asked Ludo about this, and his lack of an answer is a bit alarming... Thanks
  9. jimldk

    jimldk Super Member ECF Veteran

    Hi Jarvis, Stan Ferou ask me the same question couple of days ago...yes, if it does poses a danger but the fact is that we still did not find any noxious or dangerous chemical ..I rather erred onto the caution side.....still need deeper insight into this matter...:)
  10. BrazilyanGuy

    BrazilyanGuy Senior Member ECF Veteran

    I totally agree with you my friend. I prefer to buy e-liquid from USA.
  11. Somoney

    Somoney Senior Member ECF Veteran

    Oct 9, 2008
    Hi guys, 1st post. Was looking to get some of these for a couple family members that chain smoke 2packs a day. From what I have read e-cigarettes are still saffer than tobacco. This thread however makes you wonder. Are there any flavoring chemicals that DO NOT have adverse side effects? Must we assume that any flavoring be bad? I fear that an irresponsible distributor of e-liquid can bring the hammer down on this product in a big way.

    What about burning flavored candles?!
  12. Kate

    Kate Moved On

    Jun 26, 2008
    Hi Somoney, welcome to the forum.

    We don't know about long term safety because this is a new thing and we don't have tests yet. The ingredients we inhale in eliquid have not been tested for inhaling except for nicotine and propylene glycol. We're making it up and using ourselves as guinea pigs. General opinion seems to be that it is probably safer than tobacco smoking.

    We have no lab test results for any eliquid apart from the Wicked range from Pillbox. He has his ingredients analysed for signs of known hazards. For what it's worth some of the other brands say theirs is tested and quality controlled.

    Scented candles aren't inhaled steadily throughout the day every day the way we inhale vapour.
  13. Somoney

    Somoney Senior Member ECF Veteran

    Oct 9, 2008
    You don't know my wife 8-o
  14. TropicalBob

    TropicalBob Vaping Master ECF Veteran

    Jan 13, 2008
    Port Charlotte, FL USA
    I'm not kidding when I tell you I watched a TV report the other day on how Asian cultures burn incense non-stop and it's giving them lung diseases. Whatever country it was -- and who pays close attention all the time -- was trying to get people to stop burning the things. The smoke is killing them!

    And it's also no joke that all wood-burning in the U.S. is under attack as a source of atmospheric pollution. Barbecue joints are being threatened or sued; wood stoves are being challenged as "not green" and "unfriendly". Heaven forbid, you inhale the emissions from a burning candle!

    Kate has steered you correctly. We know nothing. We assume the best if we continue to e-smoke. I do. Bet you will too.
  15. NotYingYang

    NotYingYang Senior Member ECF Veteran

    Nov 21, 2008
    United States
    So the e-juice of USA suppliers don't contain diacetyl?
  16. Kate

    Kate Moved On

    Jun 26, 2008
    Here are the ingredients in Johnson Creek Smoke Juice:



    There is no specific information about what the flavourings are so we don't know. I'm sure if someone were to ask about diacetyl they would say. Maybe you could email them and tell us what they say.
  17. dc2k08

    dc2k08 Ultra Member ECF Veteran

    May 21, 2008
    Diacetyl was a flavour that microwave popcorn manufactures put in their product had then had a bunch of factory workers develop lung diseases from working with it. it might be harmful to even inhale the steam off a freshly cooked bag that contained it.

    A popcorn worker in Missouri, USA, was awarded $2.7 million in July 2005, as a result of developing bronchiolitis obliterans from inhaling diacetyl at work.

    it would be really bad if some of these flavours we use contained it.
  18. TropicalBob

    TropicalBob Vaping Master ECF Veteran

    Jan 13, 2008
    Port Charlotte, FL USA
    ...just don't call it "juice" in your email ...
  19. Sun Vaporer

    Sun Vaporer Moved On ECF Veteran

    Jan 2, 2009
    I too was a little concerned about the "ingredients" in the liquid so I have been vaporing a mixture of pure FOOD-GRADE VEGETABLE GLYCERIN and COOK's PURE VANILLA EXRACT (burbon vanilla bean extractive in water and alccohol)--that is about as safe as I think I could get. If that is harmful than god help all the bakers in the world who are boiling and cooking all day and inhaling mixtures like this. Lot of good artices and info on home brews by many members here in the forum at the DIY E-liquid section--the posts in that section are very helpful so check it out.
  20. markywos

    markywos Full Member

    Feb 27, 2009
    newb here! I've quit smoking for 2 months but I feel deprived whenever I drink with friends who smoke. I purchased my first e-cig kit today & am concerned about this ingredient "Diacetyl." Cartridges came with the kit & since it is from China... I'm just a little bit afraid abou the stuff that went in these carts. Is it safe to vape these or should I just toss them & buy e-juice? BTW I purchased an 84mm from ruyandirect. thanks much :)
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