Hookah may be the new upcoming trend in the midst of all the health advice revolving around smoking and its ill-effects, but now, it has been found that the fumes that hookah smokers inhale contain toxic benzene that could be associated with an increased risk of leukemia- a deadly skin cancer as per the findings from a new study from San Diego State University. Inhaling more of flavoured tobacco will certainly put a person at more risk of being affected by this cancer, health experts believe.
The levels of SPMA in the urine of more than 100 hookah smokers were examined by the researchers for this particular study. SPMA is a by-product of beneze, and is basically an acid found in the urine of more than 100 non-smokers exposed to hookah smoke.
Being a toxic element, benzene is found in tobacco and charcoal. It has been classified as a Group 1 carcinogen which means that it has been proven to cause cancer in humans by the US National Toxicology Program.
The researchers got alarmed when they found that the SPMA levels were four times higher in hookah smokers than normal individuals. It is highly recommended by the researchers to reduce or stop hookah tobacco usage since they are of the view that there is no ‘safe level’ of exposure to benzene.
This study was basically conducted by the researchers in an attempt to understand the harmful effects of hookah smoking, and also considering that the new hookah smoking trend is getting extremely popular in the United States. The Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention, a journal of the American Association for Cancer Research have published the detailed study related to research.
Study author Dr. Nada Kassem, associate director at the Center for Behavioral Epidemiology and Community Health at San Diego State University, in an interview to FoxNews.com said, “Non-smokers who socialize with hookah smokers also inhale large quantities of charcoal combustion-generated toxic and carcinogenic emissions. Benzene is present in both tobacco smoke and burning charcoal emissions”.