What's in a cigarette?

Each cigarette contains around 4,000 chemicals, many of which are known to be toxic. Here are a few of the nasties you’ll be inhaling in every drag:

Acetone - widely used as a solvent

Ammonia - found in cleaning fluids

Arsenic - a deadly poison, used in insecticides

Benzene - used as a solvent in fuel and chemical production

Cadmium - a highly poisonous metal used in batteries

Carbon monoxide (CO) - an odourless, tasteless and poisonous gas; makes breathing more difficult as it combines with the blood that carries oxygen around the body. Up to 15 per cent of a smoker’s blood may be carrying CO instead of oxygen, making the heart work harder, and potentially leading to coronary heart disease and circulation problems.

Cyanide - a deadly poison

Formaldehyde - used to preserve dead bodies

Methanol - rocket fuel!

Shellac - becomes a wood varnish when mixed with a form of alcohol

Tar - a mixture of chemicals (including formaldehyde, arsenic and cyanide). About 70 per cent of the tar remains in smokers’ lungs, causing a range of serious lung conditions.