This tobacco plant has been indigenous to the North Americans. It’s been used as a medicine and stimulant for over 2,000 years. Extraction of the leaf is taken orally to treat dysmenorrhea.
Smoking pipes & cigars became popular quickly throughout the 1600s. Some saw tobacco as medicinal, while others saw it as toxic and habit-forming.
The tobacco industry grew throughout the 1700s, and then became ginormous in Late 1800’s. That’s when James A. Bonsack was granted a U.S. patent for a cigarette machine, which tobacco was fed onto a continuous strip of paper and was automatically formed, pasted, closed, and cut to lengths by a rotary cutting knife. The Bonsack machine was then imported to England in 1883. In the next few years the cigarette industry developed in several other European countries.
From then on, cigarettes became much easier to produce, and this saw in the dawn of the major tobacco corporations.
Richard Doll and A. Bradford Hill, publish an article in the British Medical Journal that confirms the link between smoking and lung cancer.
10 years later in 1964, the Surgeon General of the U.S. published a study linking smoking with heart disease and lung cancer. In 1994, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) officially recognized nicotine as a drug that produced dependency.
The FDA was not granted control over nicotine regulations by the Supreme Court until June 22nd, 2009. On this day is when the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act gave the FDA the power to regulate the production and advertisement of tobacco products.
When a body is exposed to nicotine, the individual experiences a “kick.” This is caused by nicotine stimulating the adrenal glands, which results in the release of adrenaline. This surge of adrenaline stimulates the body. There is an immediate release of glucose, as well as an increase in heart rate, breathing activity, and blood pressure.
Nicotine also makes the pancreas produce less insulin, causing a slight increase in blood sugar or glucose.
Indirectly, nicotine causes the release of dopamine in the pleasure and motivation areas of the brain. Dopamine is a brain chemical that affects emotions, movements, and sensations of pleasure and pain. If your brain dopamine levels rise, the feeling of contentment is higher.
Depending on the dose of nicotine taken and the individual’s nervous system arousal, nicotine can also act as a sedative.
Consuming nicotine’s also linked to raised alertness, euphoria, and a sensation of being relaxed.