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England Aims to Be Smoke Free by 2030

Recent years have seen a huge increase in the number of people vaping throughout the UK. Meanwhile, a report from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) found that smoking among UK adults had dropped by over 5% since 2011, reaching 14.7% according to the most recent available data.

With such a huge drop in smoking rates – falling by an impressive 25% in a few short years – it is perhaps not surprising that the UK Government would like to make England a smoke-free country by 2030.

Could it happen in just 10 years?

We are entering the last few weeks of 2019 and about to head into 2020. Therefore, the deadline is a little over a decade away. Could this ambitious plan come to fruition?

The huge fall in smoking rates in the UK was confirmed in the ONS report, Adult smoking habits in the UK: 2018, released in July 2019. Yet even with a notable 5% drop in that period, this wouldn’t lead to smoking being completely eradicated.

A Government green paper was released that highlighted the ambitious target

A green paper is a preliminary report rather than a report that is set to become law. However, it has had the desired effect of generating plenty of discussion about the topic of reducing and eventually eradicating smoking in the UK.

The report in question, ‘Advancing our health: Prevention in the 2020s’, covered far more than just smoking. However, since the report focused on combating health conditions that could be prevented, smoking was heavily featured. It pointed out that we already have ‘one of the lowest smoking rates in Europe.’ That is something to celebrate, and it is encouraging that the Government wants to go further.

The report went on to state the desire to eradicate ‘smoked tobacco’ by the 2030 deadline. It also mentioned that e-cigarettes could be a good alternative to smoking to help achieve this aim.

Vaping has a big role to play

Many people attribute the big drop in smoking rates to the advent of vaping. Certainly, this seems to have become the most popular way for smokers to quit. There are several other nicotine replacement therapy options available, but for many, vaping most closely imitates the act of smoking a cigarette. Replicating that experience is clearly useful for many. It also means the individual can receive that nicotine hit while quitting harmful cigarettes.

It’s true that some people have managed to quit from their own efforts alone, but for many, the easiest route to quitting is via vaping. Promisingly, the report made it clear the idea was to move towards preventative measures. It’s no surprise that reducing and wiping out smoking altogether is a key part of this.

Hospitals will soon provide an opportunity for smokers to accept treatment to quit

At the beginning of 2019, NHS England created headlines by confirming millions of pounds would be invested in helping smokers and excessive drinkers quit their respective habits. The nature of the help was not stated, but it was confirmed that smokers being admitted to hospital would receive support in trying to stop smoking.

While this is a good step to take, and applies regardless of the reason for admission, we think it would be better still for GPs to provide the support and advice. While not all smokers are admitted for a reason connected to their habit, this will be true in some instances. Why not provide the advice and support at an earlier stage, hopefully to see off any potential illnesses or conditions that could arise that would lead to hospital admission?

Will the Government achieve its aim of a smoke-free England by 2030?

It is ambitious, to be sure, and the Government has yet to reveal how it intends to achieve this aim. The steps to be taken are to be revealed at a later date. However, even if it falls short of wiping out smoking completely by 2030, it is likely we will see rates drop still further.

Every age group has seen a drop in smoking rates over recent years. Vaping has helped and should continue to do so in future. The laws in the UK are far more relaxed on vaping than we’ve seen in other countries, and this looks likely to continue.

If England did manage to become smoke free – and we think it will eventually, perhaps not by 2030 but certainly eventually – we suspect it could be one of the first countries to achieve the feat. Taking active steps to support smokers, to provide advice and nicotine replacement therapies, and to help people stop before they experience illnesses associated with smoking, are all important.

What are your thoughts on this aim? Do you think the Government could make England smoke free in the next decade? Let us know what you think by leaving your comment below.

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Menthol Cigarettes to Be Banned in the UK

Have you heard of the TRPR regulations? Many smokers haven’t, but it seems nearly a quarter of everyone who smokes is in for a major shock next year. And it is all down to these regulations, otherwise known as The Tobacco and Related Products Regulations 2016.

The demise of menthol cigarettes

Approximately a quarter of smokers opt to use menthol cigarettes, but thanks to the TRPR regulations, they’ll no longer be able to buy them from 20th May next year. With so many other events taking centre stage at present (hello Brexit), it’s possible news of the ban could have flown way underneath the radar even when it was reported. The chance of anyone who smokes menthol cigarettes or menthol rolling tobacco getting wind of the news is likely low.

The ruling stemmed from the EU’s Tobacco Products Directive, which was passed in 2014 and came into force two years later. That made major headlines and has continued to do so since, and yet few know that menthol cigarettes, with their minty flavour, are soon to be no more. Indeed, one government petition we discovered that disagreed with the ban received just 16 signatures.

What’s next for fans of menthol?

Some who do know about the impending ban think menthol fans will simply switch to regular cigarettes. We suspect it is more likely they’ll switch to vaping, opting for mint-flavoured e-liquids that also contain nicotine. Perhaps the Government is keen for this to happen, since the UK is forward thinking on how positive vaping is as a method for quitting smoking. Could they have adopted the ruling without any fuss because they see the positive side?

If you smoke menthol cigarettes, what will you do next May? Let us know your tactics and opinions on the ban below.

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Vaping in America Under Threat

Electronic cigarettes have been proven time and again to help smokers quit the habit and improve their health. They have also been confirmed to be far safer than cigarettes.

And yet some countries are far behind in their understanding of the advantages and benefits of vaping – America included.

On September 11th, Alex Azar, the Health and Human Services Secretary announced that flavoured vaping products would be banned. Vapers throughout America have long been having a tough time. While many people have confirmed e-cigs were the reason they were able to quit smoking, those in charge don’t appear to understand how powerful vaping is.

Does the recent spate of lung disease deaths have anything to do with this decision?

We think it might, even though vaping was not behind the deaths attributed to the lung condition that has killed several people and made major headlines across the world, not just in the US. The outbreak was deemed to be linked to the use of illegal products containing THC oil and vitamin E acetate, rather than to regular legal vaping products.

While the truth is now out, it hasn’t done vaping any good. It certainly hasn’t changed the minds of those in power. All flavoured vaping liquids are going to be removed from the market. The ruling won’t affect tobacco flavours, but we wouldn’t be surprised if that eventually happened too.

The secretary stated they will ‘do what’s necessary’ to protect kids and prevent youths using the products. He suggested that tobacco-flavoured vaping liquids would eventually be included if youths started gravitating to using those instead. We wonder… with flavoured liquids removed from the market, surely they are going to gravitate to whatever is left? It’s an odd stance to take.

Could a lack of products in the vaping market drive more people to buy illegal products?

It could well happen. It should be noted that the recent lung illnesses that have taken lives were caused by illegal products. That was highlighted from the investigation into that outbreak. So, there is a real risk that this knee-jerk reaction from the US government to ban flavoured vaping products could lead more people to try illegal products instead.

Lots of studies confirm that vaping has assisted thousands of people in quitting smoking. It is proven to be far safer than smoking. Some would say those living in the UK are far better off than those in many other countries, as the UK is relatively forward thinking in supporting vaping and confirming its ability to help people quit smoking. The US is far off that mark, clearly.

Unless the new ruling comes to court and is overturned, Americans will soon face a world where they can only get hold of tobacco-flavoured vaping liquids. And one suspects there is a good chance those might eventually be banned too.

What do you think of this new ruling? Do you think this could be another nail in the coffin of electronic cigarettes in America? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

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Vaping Helps Reduce UK Smoking Rates

While the jury may be out among some portions of the population regarding vaping, a recent study conducted by Dr Emma Beard of University College London showed that vaping has had a significant effect in helping reduce the smoking rates in the UK.

Smoking rates have been steadily dropping over the past few decades. However, this study used data from 1973 through to 2016 to see how and when smokers stopped.

Stop smoking initiatives led to bigger drops in smoking over the years

Various initiatives have been introduced over the years to help smokers quit the habit. The study indicated that the number of people quitting rose in the late Nineties.

Then came vaping, which has often been spoken of as the most powerful way to help smokers quit cigarettes and other tobacco products for good. Some speculated that vaping also encouraged non-smokers to start, thanks to the popularity of e-cigarettes. However, the results highlighted in the study showed this was not the case. That issue, spoken of as ‘contentious’ in the published piece highlighting the study in the BMJ Thorax Journal, has been debunked in many quarters already. This study backed it up, saying that evidence ‘does not support concerns’ of this kind.

The government wants to make the UK entirely smoke free in just over a decade, by 2030. That is a bold target, but it is one that could be met with the help of vaping. As time has gone on, vaping has become more widespread and more popular among smokers. Many have quit when they had never been able to do so before.

The evidence supporting vaping as a powerful anti-smoking tool is piling up. What are your thoughts on this new research? Do you think the UK could be smoke free by 2030?

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Fact Checking the Lung Disease Epidemic

If you keep up with the news, you may have noticed a few stories have been finding their way into the UK press concerning a nasty lung disease spreading throughout America. The headlines have been shocking, worrying, and eye-catching, telling of people who have died of a ‘mysterious lung condition’.

Those same headlines have mentioned that the fatalities from the ‘epidemic’ have been e-cigarette users. Suddenly, vaping has come under the cosh.

So, is there reason to be concerned?

Well… yes and no. Investigators have highlighted the fact that people who have fallen victim to this strange lung condition have been using THC oil cartridges. These are illegal and contain marijuana extract and vitamin E acetate. The vitamin E might sound healthy but acetate? Not so much. This is found in many health and beauty products designed to be used on the skin. However, it is not designed – nor it is suitable – to be inhaled.

With 34 cases being investigated as of early September 2019, an update from the New York State Department of Health confirmed that:

“At least one vitamin E acetate containing vape product has been linked to each patient who submitted a product for testing.”

At least one from each person. While it is still early days and there are no definitive answers yet, it seems there is a strong link between the lung condition that has taken several lives and illegal products containing vitamin E acetate. There is no reason and certainly no evidence to suggest legal vaping products are involved.

Unfortunately, this has not stopped the media from jumping on the story with both feet and getting the facts wrong. Vaping has been put in the dock when the real suspect should be illegal products containing THC oil cartridges. Sadly, some people who are against vaping and believe it should be banned have taken this as a golden opportunity to push for that result.

We await the results of the investigation with interest. However, it is heartening to see that officials have already spoken of the likelihood that ‘non-traditional’ products are behind the illness, rather than legal vaping products.

What do you think of the recent headlines surrounding this outbreak? Do you believe more should be done to limit access to these illegal products? Do you think anything can be done? Let us know your thoughts by leaving your comments below.

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San Francisco Bans Vaping

If you’re heading to San Francisco on holiday anytime soon, best you leave your vaping supplies at home. Vapers have learned the shocking news that vaping is set to be banned in the city. Two votes have taken place allowing the ban to come into force. While you can still legally vape in San Fran at present, the legislation is expected to kick in within weeks.

Illegal to vape… but not to smoke?

Quite what this means for the health of San Franciscans remains to be seen. You’d think that a ban this wide-ranging would encompass smoking too. However, that’s not the case. While vaping looks set to become illegal in the city, lawmakers have in their wisdom failed to extend the ban to smoking. So, you can happily smoke cigarettes that have been proven to harm health while being unable to switch to the far less harmful electronic cigarettes.

Why have people voted to ban vaping?

Good question. The reason for the vote seems to be that those in charge are concerned about young people vaping. However, we know many people have stopped smoking because e-cigs represent a far safer alternative. If those e-cigs do end up being banned, as looks likely to be the case, young people (and everyone else trying to quit smoking) are less likely to succeed in their efforts.

Vaping is also far safer than smoking. While some could say neither is desirable, many smokers have kicked the habit with e-cigs when they failed to do so by any other means. Time after time, we hear how much better vaping is for your health when compared to smoking. Those who never smoke will be unlikely to take up vaping (again, studies have shown this).

So, who are the winners if this law passes? Undoubtedly the tobacco companies. It seems unlikely anyone else is going to benefit. What are your thoughts on this?

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By admin

Vape Shops Open in Hospitals

With many hospitals now becoming smoke-free zones, it’s rare to see anyone – patients, visitors, or staff – hanging around outside hospital entrances smoking cigarettes. You might just see people vaping there more often though, especially if the steps taken by two West Midlands hospitals are repeated elsewhere.

Birmingham City Hospital and Sandwell General Hospital, both operated by the Sandwell and West Birmingham Hospitals NHS Trust, now sell a range of vaping products. A vape shop has been opened on each site, encouraging patients and visitors to consider switching to the safer option instead of continuing to smoke.

25% of patients thought to be smokers

The NHS sees the consequences of smoking every day. Research suggests around 25% of hospital beds are occupied by smokers. The current percentage of people in the UK who smoke is around 14.7%. That suggests there is a higher chance of smokers landing in hospital when compared to the population in general.

While smoking rates are dropping fast, the NHS is keen to encourage more people to quit smoking and try vaping instead. An independent review has suggested e-cigs are 95% less harmful than smoking tobacco. It seems a common-sense move, therefore, to open vape shops in hospitals, where patients and staff may be encouraged to make the change.

An impulse buy

We’re all familiar with impulse buys – products we want to buy the moment we see them, and therefore we do just that. By introducing a range of vaping products in hospitals, it’s thought that more smokers might make the snap decision to try and quit.

The idea of offering advice on how to quit while smokers are in hospital is a good one. Until now, however, the supplies have not been on hand to encourage the change to take place. It’s one thing to give someone information on vaping and how to swap from smoking to e-cigs, but quite another to offer the products right there in the hospital.

No doubt many NHS trusts are looking at the progress made in these two West Midlands hospitals to see what happens. If the scheme is a success, we can expect it to be introduced in other hospitals across the country very soon. It could end up leading to another significant drop in smoking rates in the next few years.

Do you think this is a good idea? Would you like to see vaping shops open in other hospitals across the UK? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.

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Discover Our New Range of CBD Products from Medterra

Not long ago, CBD products were almost unheard of.

So, why are CBD products becoming better known? Why are more and more people becoming interested in them? We are about to find out.

What does CBD stand for?

It is a shortened term for the word cannabidiol. This is a legal component of the cannabis plant. The plant is comprised of several compounds, and while some give the user a high people associate with weed (compound THC) , others do not (compound CCBD). Cannabidiol doesn’t produce this high, but some people have found it helps them with various medical conditions. Hence why people are searching for products containing cannabidiol or CBD oil.

Why are people interested in using CBD products?

Thousands of people have already ordered Medterra’s products. Many have left positive reviews sharing their experiences of taking the capsules or tincture.

For example, several people said they found it helped them sleep better. Another individual suffering from arthritis and fibromyalgia stated the product reduced the pain levels they experienced from these conditions. Someone else said they had used the tincture to help ease their dog’s anxiety and had seen positive results.

As you read through reviews for Medterra’s CBD products, it becomes clear people have seen improvements in various conditions pertaining to both mental and physical health.

Purchasing quality CBD products at Matchless

Here at Matchless, we are always looking to introduce new products to our range. We always demand the best quality too, as we want to make sure all our customers are satisfied with their purchases.

We’ve sourced two products from a company called Medterra, both of which can now be found on our website, ready for you to order. These products are available for use by those over the age of 18.

We’ve introduced two of the best products from their collection – MedOil CBD Tincture and CBD Gel Capsules. Both are comprised of at least 99% cannabidiol isolate, ensuring you receive only the best product each time. Some CBD products have lower concentrates, so if you purchase these you know exactly how much CBD you are assured of in each dose.

Choosing the most appropriate Medterra CBD product for your needs

The decision on which product to buy depends on how you intend to use it. Some people prefer the convenience of taking a capsule each day. Others want more control over the amount they take. For these individuals, the tincture is the best option.

Medterra CBD Gel Capsules

Do you like the convenience of being able to pop a vitamin pill into your mouth first thing each day? Just one capsule, packed with the exact measure of the vitamins or minerals you need.

If that sounds ideal and you are looking for the same idea in your chosen CBD product, the Medterra CBD Gel Capsules are for you. The MCT oil carries the CBD isolate in a concentrate of at least 99%. These are encased within a gelatin capsule for easy digestion and dispersion. The gelatin means the capsules aren’t suitable for vegans or vegetarians, who may wish to consider using the tincture below instead.

If that’s not a concern, you can take one 25mg capsule as part of your daily routine. You choose whether to take it in the morning or evening, depending on your own requirements. The container includes 30 capsules, enough for a month’s supply. It’s also child-proof, although it should still be kept well away from children and pets for safety.

MedOil CBD Tincture

Available in a convenient 500mg strength, the bottle uses MCT oil as a carrier and includes CBD isolate of the highest quality. The MedOil CBD Tincture screw-top bottle includes an easy to use dropper hidden inside the cap. The dropper is marked to allow for 0.25ml, 0.5ml, 0.75ml, and 1ml servings. Simply squeeze the dropper to take in the liquid, squeeze out as necessary to reach the desired serving size, and squeeze again to place the drops under your tongue. The whole process takes mere seconds, especially once you are used to it.

The simple nature of the ingredients – just two of them, including the non-psychoactive cannabidiol component – means the product can safely be used by vegans and vegetarians.

Quality is the watchword for Medterra

You can see that these products are of equally high quality. You merely need to select the most appropriate method of delivery. This could depend on how much you wish to use each day.

Medterra guarantees its CBD is made in America, sourced from non-GMO hemp. Tested and confirmed free of contaminants prior to use, you can rely on the quality of these products. Let us know if you have any questions or share your experiences of using CBD oil here.

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