10 Most Dangerous Chemicals in Cigarettes

by Dr Antonio Howell, MD

in side effects

The 3 Week Diet

Cigarettes contain over 4,000 chemicals, 200 of which are known to cause cancer. As you light the cigarette, the dormant chemicals become active and travel to your mouth, nose, and into your lungs. Some are absorbed by your blood which then carries the remaining chemicals to all other parts of your body, including your heart and brain.

Although most cigarettes have filters, only a very small percentage of these chemicals are removed. Just one cigarette can actually cause you real harm.

Here is the list of the 10 most dangerous chemicals found in cigarettes that you are inhaling every time you puff.

Acetone – this substance is most commonly used as a nail polish remover and a paint stripper. Exposure to this chemical can cause varying side effects, such as increased pulse rate, nausea, headache, and lightheadedness. Once inhaled, acetone can severely damage your lungs.

Ammonia – it is a common ingredient in most house cleaners, including toilet and bathroom cleaning solutions, and too much exposure to this chemical can lead to the development of severe upper respiratory problems. Long-term inhalation of ammonia has also been linked to chronic bronchitis.

Arsenic – this substance is so poisonous that it is often used as pesticide and rat poison. Long-term exposure to arsenic can lead to cardiovascular and respiratory problems, as well as cancer.

Benzoapyrene – this chemical is often found in pitch and coal tar. It is an organic compound has been linked by experts to cancer.

Cadmium – yes, you read it right. Cigarettes contain cadmium – a type of heavy metal! This metal is very toxic, even in low doses. There are no mild symptoms of cadmium exposure. Symptoms associated with it are categorized as either acute or chronic.


Butane – this is probably the reason why cigarette lights up so easily. This flammable substance is often used in lighter fuel and aerosol propellant.

Formaldehyde – this toxic chemical is widely used in many industries, especially in manufacturing cleaning products. Inhalation of this substance can cause irritation in the eyes, nose and nasal cavities. It can also cause respiratory problems such as coughing, difficulty breathing, and lesions in the lungs.


Lead – this is another type of metal that can cause serious damage on the nervous system connections. Children are often affected by lead poisoning because they generally have weaker immune system than healthy adults.


Propylene glycol – this chemical is found in many products, such as antifreeze, laundry soaps, and pet foods. It can cause irritation in the eyes, skin and mucous membranes. Pregnant women and young children are not able to eliminate this toxin easily from their body so they are more susceptible to its dangerous side effects.

Benzene – the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services classifies this compound as a human carcinogen. This toxic chemical is found in gasoline, and in dye, nylon and plastic products. Exposure to excessively high levels of benzene is known to cause death.

If you don’t want to be absorbing all these nasty chemical compounds, better STOP SMOKING NOW.


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