Keeping an eye on the vaping news can at times feel like Groundhog Day. Day after day it is the same story; E-cigs are going to save the world Vs no, they are going to cause Armageddon and we will all die an agonizing death.

Yet today we came upon a challenge to Public Health, and we, as you know, like a challenge or two, so we thought we would share this with you.

(Should you choose to get involved or not, is entirely up to you – but should this challenge be accepted, and those that accept it fail, it could, and that is said tentatively, could start to change paradigms).

The Challenge?

To quote directly from the page: This is a 30-day challenge for anyone in public health to show nicotine addiction in humans, without MAOI’S, ammonia, or any other non-nicotine additive or any form of tobacco, without question.

Many of us have heard the adage that nicotine is more addictive than heroin. Many of us say ppffffttt to that, but sadly many others believe it, including medics and public health, and so the paradigm remains, that nicotine is highly addictive.

What is interesting about this challenge is that it could have only come about due to vaping; because vaping is disruptive.

Vaping is disrupting the pharmaceutical industry and their paradigms. We now know that the statistics fed to us for NRT are for a mere 4 weeks of use. They look positive when you see them, but extend the use of NRT to a year, and it fails to help smokers quit over 90% of the time.

Not so positive.

This huge fail rate is the reason many smokers remain on that hamster wheel of smoking/NRT/smoking/NRT/smoking.

What needs to change now is the public and public health institutions attitude towards nicotine.

Nicotine has been vilified due to it only ever having been studied within tobacco and cigarettes, in with all the toxic mixtures that the tobacco industry adds to the cigarettes to keep you hooked.

The tobacco industry is being disrupted by vaping, so much so that they are now focusing on e-cigarettes and heat not burn as their future sources of income.

What needs to change now is the public and public health institutions attitude towards nicotine.

On its own, how addictive is it?

Anecdotally, here in the vaping community we have plenty of evidence that shows vapers tend to naturally titrate their nicotine levels down, forget to vape, no longer panic if they forget their e cig, and many eventually stop the nicotine all together. This is generally a pretty simple and fairly pain free procedure. Certainly, not the same as giving up heroin or alcohol.

But back to the challenge, and the list of what the challengers will not accept as evidence:

Uncceptable documentation

– Animal studies (rats, mice, monkeys, etc.) are not acceptable.

– Submissions not published in professional or scientific journals or government websites are not acceptable.

– Anything inaccessible by the public, including “paywalls” via the internet, are not acceptable.

– Oral presentations, press releases are not acceptable.

– Existing clinical trials, case studies, data, in vitro studies, self-reported surveys and scientific documentation in humans that claim probabilities or hypothetical possibilities as they do not show nicotine “is” addictive and are not acceptable.

– Existing clinical trials, case studies, data, in vitro studies, self-reported surveys, and scientific documentation cannot include words and phrases like “hand to mouth, dependent, habitual, ritualistic” or words like “can, conceivably, could, likely, may, might, perhaps, possible, possibly, possibility, probably, probability” and cannot include tobacco or MAOI’s, ammonia, or any other non-nicotine additive for this challenge.


This 30-day challenge is arguing that nicotine alone is not as addictive as heroin. It is possibly on a par with caffeine, and we all know that knocking caffeine on the head takes a few days, a rip roaring headache and that’s about it.

So, will anyone in public health pick up this challenge? We will wait and see!

The Challenge has a go fund me page, and is raising money for legitimate e cigarette research.