E-cigarette ban sought: Decades of education against smoking at risk

Updated 26 July 2014
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E-cigarette ban sought: Decades of education against smoking at risk

A prominent professor at King Saud University (KSU) has called for a ban on the sale of e-cigarettes, especially to those under the age of 18.
Sultan Ayoub Meo, a professor at the KSU’s College of Medicine, told Arab News on Friday that e-cigarette smoking should be regulated in the same way as traditional cigarettes. “Retail outlets, including pharmacies, must not be allowed to sell it to children and adolescents,” he said.
E-cigarettes, which generate a vapor containing nicotine as a tobacco substitute, were initially released as a device to help smokers quit, but Meo fears “the huge rise in users could normalize smoking, and undo decades of anti-smoking education and campaigning.”
He pointed out that a number of countries have already banned e-smoking, and some nations have restricted their sales.
France is preparing to place e-cigarettes on the same legal footing as tobacco smoking and moving toward its prohibition. Some American states, including New York, have already stopped use of e-cigarettes in public places. Australia, Canada, Mexico, Russia, Brazil, Lebanon, the UAE, Israel, Norway, Panama, Hong Kong, Thailand and Singapore have banned e-smoking.
Referring to the harmful effects of e-cigarettes, the KSU professor pointed out that electronic cigarettes are not a “smoking cessation” product. “Unscientific and fake claims about e-cigarettes are creating confusion among people about e-cigarettes,” said Meo, adding that e-cigarettes are a nicotine delivery device, whose users are commonly called “e-smokers” or “vapors.”
He said e-cigarettes are currently gaining popularity among high-income, urban population. The main components of e-cigarettes consist of an aerosol generator, flow sensor, battery and a solution (e-liquid) storage compartment, he explained. E-cigarettes can be smokeless, the smell fades quickly, and are easy to carry and conceal, he said.


US issues health alert on romaine lettuce

In this file photo taken on May 2, 2018, Romaine lettuce is displayed at a grocery store in San Anselmo, California. (AFP)
Updated 21 November 2018
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US issues health alert on romaine lettuce

  • Health officials in Canada said they had also identified 18 people stricken with the same strain of food poisoning in two provinces, Ontario and Quebec

WASHINGTON: US health officials warned consumers Tuesday not to eat any romaine lettuce and to throw away any they might have in their homes, citing an outbreak of E. coli poisoning.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued the warning against all Romaine lettuce just two days before the Thanksgiving holiday, when American families gather and feast together.
“Consumers who have any type of romaine lettuce in their home should not eat it and should throw it away, even if some of it was eaten and no one has gotten sick,” the CDC said, after 32 people were reported sick from E. coli poisoning in 11 states, with 13 of them hospitalized. One of those had suffered kidney failure.
Health officials in Canada said they had also identified 18 people stricken with the same strain of food poisoning in two provinces, Ontario and Quebec.
“This advice includes all types or uses of romaine lettuce, such as whole heads of romaine, hearts of romaine, and bags and boxes of precut lettuce and salad mixes that contain romaine, including baby romaine, spring mix, and Caesar salad,” the CDC said, noting that it had not been able to pinpoint precisely where the suspect leaves had originated.
“If you do not know if the lettuce is romaine or whether a salad mix contains romaine, do not eat it and throw it away,” the CDC said.
It advised anyone who had stored romaine lettuce in their refrigerator to wash down the shelves where the leaves had been kept.
No deaths have so far been reported.