Nicotine: A Naturally Unnatural Addiction

Surprisingly nicotine is commonly found in all types of nightshades including eggplant, tomato, potato, and green peppers at some level, yet the plant that is most associated for its levels of nicotine, which can consequently lead to addiction is the tobacco plant.


Addiction to nicotine involves the attachment of the chemical to nicotinic receptors found in the brain and in doing so raises the level of adrenaline, which acts as a stimulating agent. Most tobacco smokers report increased calmness due to the process that takes place after the initial stimulation. This process involves the activation of the various neurotransmitters located in the brain. The results of the activation of these neurotransmitters can be feelings described as a mild sense of euphoria. Research has shown that the same neurotransmitters are activated during cocaine and heroin use leading to a very strong possibility and increase in tobacco addiction.


Nicotine's ability to act as both a stimulant and a euphoric adds to one's difficulty in breaking their tobacco addiction. Yet, like all other addictions, there are plenty of resources available to aid a person to full recovery.

 

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