A sweet display outside the State Capitol is highlight a concerning trend

A sweet display outside the State Capitol is highlight a concerning trend
This display was set up outside the State Capitol Monday. (Source: Hawaii News Now)

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - “Candy flavored tobacco hooks kids.” That’s what the Hawaii Public Health Institute is warning through a new public display.

That initial hook can lead to addiction, and advocates are hoping to strengthen laws against flavored tobacco and vaping products in Hawaii.

During a rally Monday, they called for an end to the sale of flavored tobacco products in Hawaii.

Local public health experts and government officials say the nicotine in the flavored tobacco juice are addictive.

One expert points to a new study shows that e-cigs can possibly raise the risk of stroke, heart attack, and coronary heart disease.

“E-cigarettes (are) considered almost a gateway method for the youngsters to get into nicotine use and cigarette use and also a lot of them end up using traditional cigarette smoking after using e-cigarette,” Dr. Kazuma Nakagawa, Medical Director of Comprehensive Stroke Center at the Queen’s Medical Center, said.

Advocates fighting against vaping and cigarette use point to concerning numbers from school surveys.

“We have about 42 percent of our high schoolers reporting the use of an electronic product, that’s very very alarming to us,” Heidi Armstrong, Assistant Superintendent for Office of Student Support Services, said.

Some lawmakers hope to replicate some of the strict laws that exist for tobacco, for e-cigarettes.

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