smoking facts

What Poisons Are in Cigarettes?
Smoking Facts About Toxic Cigarette Ingredients

Wondering what poisons are in cigarettes?

There are many toxic cigarette ingredients you should know about including benzene, hydrogen cyanide, and carbon monoxide. The smoking facts reveal that many of these poisons such as cigarette tar, are the harmful effects of tobacco combustion.

What Poisons are in Cigarettes - Smoking Facts

Like all smoke cigarette smoke contains solid matter. It is dissolved in the the high temperature of the smoke but when cooled it becomes a sticky gooey mass called cigarette tar.

A lot of the cigarette ingredients that cause cancer are concentrated in the cigarette tar.


60 milligrams of nicotine has the potential to kill an adult.

Nicotine is a common ingredient in insecticides


Benzene is toxic at any level of exposure and is a known human carcinogen.

"Smokers have an average benzene body burden about six times that of non-smokers."

National Cancer Institute Monograph #10 "Health Effects of Exposure to Environmental Tobacco Smoke: The Report of the California Environmental Protection Agency"

Formaldehyde has been classified as a known human carcinogen (cancer-causing substance) by the International Agency for Research on Cancer.

Classified by the United States Environmental Protection Agency as a probable human carcinogen.

In Canada it is registered as a pesticide.

Commonly used as a disinfectant because in sufficient quantities it is lethal to molds, and bacteria.

It is used for preserving animal and human tissue in research laboratories as well as in funeral homes as an embalming fluid.

carbon monoxide

Carbon Monoxide is a tasteless, colorless, and odorless gas that docks on the oxygen carrying molecules in human blood. It is classed as an asphyxiant because as long as it is there it prevents oxygen from being distributed to tissues that need it.

Heavy smokers carry around up to 10 - 50 times more carbon monoxide in their blood than the average adult.


Arsenic is a known carcinogen. It is used commercially in pesticides, insecticides, herbicides and preservatives for wood.

hydrogen cyanide

Hydrogen cyanide is a chemical that has industrial applications in mining.

It is extremely toxic to humans and has been used as a chemical warfare agent.

Hydrogen cyanide was the gas used to execute humans sentenced to death in gas chamber executions, and was used by the Nazis during mass executions in World War 2.

Face the Smoking Facts

What Specific Poisons in Cigarettes Have Been Identified?....

Health Canada lists the top 6 toxins as

As important as this question:

"What poisons are in cigarettes?"

Is this question:

"Why are poisons in cigarettes?"

Cigarette ingredients such carbon monoxide, benzene, formaldehyde and hydrogen cyanide, are formed when tobacco burns, and can be said to be the harmful effects of tobacco combustion.

Other poisonous cigarette ingredients such as tobacco-specific nitrosamines and nicotine, are found naturally in the tobacco plant and are released when the tobacco burns.

While other poisonous chemicals contained in a cigarette such as arsenic are used in tobacco farming and are taken up by the plant from the soil.

There are also radioactive cigarette ingredients.

And there is more!

Read about the chemicals contained in a cigarette, that might be radioactive, lethal, or carcinogenic....after all there are over 4000 known ingredients in a cigarette, you didn't think they would all fit on one page did you?

by Beverly OMalley

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