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Menthol is used to hook young smokers: study

17 Jul 08

Tobacco companies manipulate the amount of menthol in cigarettes to make those first few puffs more palatable to young smokers, U.S. researchers said on Wednesday in a finding that could fuel support for more tobacco regulation.

"Menthol stimulates the cooling receptors in the lung and oral pharynx," said Dr. Gregory Connolly of the Harvard School of Public Health. "It makes smoking easier."

The study, published in the American Journal of Public Health, comes as the U.S. Congress considers legislation that would give the Food and Drug Administration broad authority to regulate tobacco.

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