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Role of sweet and other flavours in liking and disliking of electronic cigarettes

October 6, 2016 News

Role of sweet and other flavours in liking and disliking of electronic cigarettes


A lovely bit of research has just been published on the BMJ’s tobacco control section, and one that’s more important then you might think on first glance.

Full paper here.

Setting out to discover if to smoke with this one and how important sweetness and other flavours are in the ‘liking or disliking’ of electronic cigarettes this new study has, unsurprisingly, found that flavour has an “important” role of the efficacy of vaping.

31 participants were provided with commercially available flavours and asked to rate whether they liked or disliked them, along with commenting on perceived intensities of sweetness, coolness, bitterness, harshness and specific flavour experienced.

The result was, well, expected.

Our findings indicate that bitterness and harshness, most likely from nicotine, have negative impacts on the liking of e-cigarettes, but the addition of flavourants that elicit sweetness or coolness generally improves liking. The results suggest that flavours play an important role in e-cigarette preference and most likely use.

We know this, it’s obvious that something that tastes nice is going to be more enjoyable to use, and if it’s more enjoyable then someone is more likely to use them successfully to switch away from tobacco. But what makes this paper important is that it finally puts to bed the accusation that sweet flavours are aimed at children.

Now, we have science to backup our anecdotal claims of “but we enjoy sweet flavours too” and the proof, scientifically, that the variety of flavours is exactly what makes vaping work.

Written: October 6, 2016