Barely a day goes by without news of some research that finds that smoke from just one specific plant, tobacco, causes symptoms and diseases that have already been known to be caused or aggravated by pesticides or dioxins. Barely a day passes that the evidence against pesticides and dioxins is not removed from that fat file to be dropped into the case against tobacco and smoking.
Studies by University of California San Diego, and Harvard, found that nicotine traces in toenail clippings provide "predictors"- of heart problems. The big hint-hint of the articles was that nicotine, and "smoking"-, was a threat, perhaps a link, perhaps a cause, of heart disease. This provides yet another justification to create tobacco prohibition. Those who'd challenge that risk being accused of the top heresy---supporting "big tobacco"-.
But the articles, and UCSD overviews of the research, did not inform about the test subject's use or non-use of patented synthetic pharmaceutical nicotine delivery devices--- patches, inhalers, gums and the like. How much of that sank to subjects' toes? Nothing suggested or said that foods such as potatoes, tomatoes, eggplant, and chocolate, which contain nicotine (though less than in tobacco), were considered as another source of the toenail nicotine.
Though expert researchers must know of the plethora of pesticide residues that contaminate most cigarettes (tobacco being about the fifth most pesticide intensive crop), and of the dioxin in the smoke from chlorine pesticides and chlorine-bleached cigarette paper, those details were neither mentioned as relevant, nor dismissed as irrelevant, to heart disease.
There is no end of available information about pesticides and dioxin causing heart disease, among many other illnesses. The nicotine found in toenails was not so much a "predicter"- of heart disease, but a big clue that the test subjects had been exposed, unknowingly, to residues of any number of tobacco pesticides, and to the dioxin and other harmful non-tobacco cigarette constituents in the smoke from the chlorinated residues and paper.
What kind of cigarettes the subjects smoked, be it plain tobacco, grow-your-own, or the chlorine/pesticide-contaminated commercial kind, remains their little secret.
If they didn't know about the coronary effects of the industrial stuff that officials still approve of in cigarettes, then the researchers are patently incompetent. More likely, they worked only to aid and abet the pesticide and chlorine industries' (including cigarette makers) evasion of proper scrutiny, PR disasters, liabilities, and significant penalties. The best way to protect the cig cartel is to pretend to be against it, by doing nothing effective---by doing as little as possible---by keeping the blame exclusively on that sinful, unpatented, public-domain tobacco and as far from the cigarette manufacturing process as possible. Hence, being "anti tobacco"- hugely benefits the cigarette cartel, including their investors and insurers.
The researchers could have looked for traces of pesticides, chlorine, and dioxin in those toenails to link that to heart disease statistics. Nicotine has no links to heart disease. Natural plants, including tobacco, cannot produce dioxins.
It's not likely that the study team has a scheme to market nicotine-enriched toenail clippings to low-income folks who can't afford cig taxes and price hikes on regular products, but no law prohibits toenail clippings, or any untested or even dangerous non-tobacco substance, in cigarettes; and no law requires specific warnings about, or listings of any of it. Ask your smoking product vendor what's in the smokes. Any toenails? Any pesticide residues? Any radiation from phosphate fertilizers? Any fire-causing burn accelerants? Any tobacco?