Study: Hookah smoking worse than cigarette smoking

Study shows it is more harmful than smokers may think

POSTED: 04:52 PM PDT May 01, 2013    UPDATED: 05:03 PM PDT May 01, 2013 
smoking_hookah_lounge
Santa Barbara, Calif. -

The idea that smoking a hookah is better for a person's health than smoking cigarettes may itself be going up in smoke.

A study about the subject was published in the March journal of Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention.  Researchers studied smokers and found that smoking a hookah is worse than smoking a half a pack of cigarettes.

They said benzene found in hookah smoke could increase the risk of leukemia.  They also found higher levels of carbon monoxide.

The study said that 30 percent of university students have smoked a hookah but don't think hookah smoke is dangerous.

A Santa Barbara restaurant that offers a hookah experience to its diners chose not to comment.  But one customer said he has no plans to try it.