The use of flavor in cigarette substitutes

Drug Alcohol Depend. 1990 Oct;26(2):155-60. doi: 10.1016/0376-8716(90)90122-u.


Cigarette smokers identify flavor as an important factor in the pleasure derived from smoking and for their choice of cigarette brand. The issue of cigarette flavor has received a great deal of study by cigarette manufacturers but relatively little by academic investigators. The paucity of literature is particularly acute in terms of the importance of flavor in cigarette substitutes, which are used to help people to reduce or quit smoking. In the current study, five different types of flavors added to a plastic cigarette substitute were assessed in experienced smokers. There were two menthol-like flavors and three tobacco-like flavors. Two groups of smokers were tested: menthol smokers and "regular" (non-menthol) smokers. Both types of smokers liked the two menthol flavors significantly more than placebo and rated the menthol flavors and the cigarette flavor as significantly more satisfying than placebo. Craving was differentially reduced in the two groups of smokers. Menthol smokers showed a small reduction in craving with the placebo, with a significant enhancement of this reduction seen with the addition of the "EZ Quit" menthol flavor.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Motivation
  • Nicotine / administration & dosage
  • Plants, Toxic*
  • Smoking / psychology
  • Smoking Prevention*
  • Taste*
  • Tobacco*


  • Nicotine