A project of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office on Women's Health

Skip Navigation

Womens Health logo

Smoking and How To Quit

divider line

"Natural" cigarettes

"Natural" cigarettes include clove cigarettes, also called kreteks (kree-teks), and flavored cigarettes, called "bidis" or "beedies." Both cigarette types are imported mainly from Southeast Asian countries. In addition to tobacco, they contain various flavorings. Kreteks contain ground cloves and clove oil. Bidis contain candy-like flavors, such as chocolate, cherry, and mango.

Some young people think that kreteks and bidis are safer than regular cigarettes because of the "natural" flavorings. Also, the packs often do not have warning labels. In fact, both kreteks and bidis deliver more nicotine, tar, and carbon monoxide than regular cigarettes. Like smoking regular cigarettes, smoking kreteks and bidis can cause cancer and other diseases.

Another type of "natural" cigarette is the herbal cigarette. This is made from a blend of herbs, such as passion flower, jasmine, and ginseng. Although herbal cigarettes contain no tobacco or nicotine, the smoke contains tar, carbon monoxide, and other toxins. Inhaling any kind of smoke is harmful to your health.

Return to top

Content last updated: May 19, 2010.

Return to top