These days, every major cigarette manufacturer across the globe has menthol cigarettes in their product lines. Introduced in the end of first quarter of 20th century by cigarette companies in order to stay afloat in the growing competition and to bring the much needed variety their product portfolio, menthol brands soon overtook classic cigarettes to become the most favored flavor amongst customers, both occasional and chain smokers alike. Studies conducted by various organizations show that more than 60% of regular smokers prefer menthol cigarettes than classic brands. In the case of African Americans, the number stands at a whooping 79%. What is there in menthol that makes it so popular?
Menthol is a chemical compound found both as a natural extract and synthetic made and it gives a cool sensation to the throat and lungs if inhaled. When used in cigarettes, it gives the smoker a cool and smooth inhale as opposed to a more burning sensation of classic cigarettes. As a result, the smoker feels it easy to inhale more smoke into his/her lungs without any difficulty. Usually, as it is seen, with cheap menthol cigarettes, the smokers tend to inhale in small, shorter, and shallow puffs as they starts to enjoy the cold feel that each drag brings. Studies conducted on the cigarette smoking patterns in different nations point out that this, coupled with the anesthetic effect of the mint flavor, is the reason that drives up a smoker’s tendency to smoke more menthol cigarettes. In short, menthol variants are found to be more addictive than the classic brands. No wonder, menthol variants have become the most sought after cigarette brands all across the world.
Another aspect that draws smokers to menthol cigarettes is its relatively cheaper price. For example, the menthol variant of Kool or Newport not only lasts longer, but also at least 50% cheaper than the cheapest of Marlboro cigarettes. Perhaps, this is why, all top cigarette makers such as Marlboro, cheap Winston cigarettes, Virginia Slims, Camel, and Salem have all included menthol variants in their product lines. Cheap Marlboro Menthol and Marlboro Mild are two popular menthol variants from the house of Marlboro cigarettes.
Regarding the exceedingly large number of menthol cigarette smokers among African Americans, experts’ points out that it may be due to the low prices and the effect of an aggressive target marketing and advertisement by cigarette makers. There is also this argument that African Americans have a larger presence of glucose diegeneicocide in their bloods, and this chemical in combination with menthol gives a soothing feel that these people crave for, if once experienced. Studies seem to underline this observation as a large number of menthol addicts are found amongst the African American populace.
Finally, the downside of menthol cigarettes in particular (all cigarettes are injurious to health) is that since the menthol smoke is smooth, smokers inhale deep, in the process bringing in more nicotine and tar into the lungs. Menthol addiction further adds to this damage. So, if you are an ardent menthol smoker who badly wants to quit smoking, as a first step, try changing to a classic variant first before eventually reducing the daily dose. Checking into a smoking cessation clinic is also advisable if you prefer professional help.