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Shisha: Different Flavoured Hookas

hookah
Note: Smoking is injurious to health

Shisha is not any adventurous sports but it is one of the adventure which adds an excitement to your life. I don’t recommend this often but at least for once, feel the smoke. Shisha is a flavored hookah where you can find many flavor like apple, lemon, double apple, etc.

What is hookah?
A hookah (hukkā or huqqah) also known as a waterpipe, arghile, or qalyān is a single or multi-stemmed instrument for smoking flavored tobacco called Mu‘assel in which the smoke is passed through a water basin (often glass based) before inhalation. The origin of the hookah is in India and Persia, or at a transition point between the two. The word hookah is a derivative of “huqqa”, which is what the Indians used to call it. According to author Cyril Elgood , who does not mention his source, it was Abul-Fath Gilani (d. 1588), a Persian physician at the Indian court of the Mughal emperor Akbar, who “first passed the smoke of tobacco through a small bowl of water to purify and cool the smoke and thus invented the hubble-bubble or hookah.” Smoking the hookah has gained popularity outside of its native region, in India, Iran, Pakistan and the Middle East, and is gaining popularity in North America, South America, Europe, Australia, Southeast Asia, Tanzania and South Africa.

How it works?
The jar at the bottom of the hookah is filled with water sufficient to submerge a few centimeters of the body tube, which is hookahsealed tightly to it. Deeper water will only increase the inhalation force needed to use it. Tobacco is placed inside the bowl at the top of the hookah. Often the bowl is covered with perforated tin foil or a metal screen and coal placed on top. The foil or screen separates the coal and the tobacco, which minimizes inhalation of coal ash with the smoke and reduces the temperature the tobacco is exposed to, in order to prevent burning the tobacco directly.

When one inhales through the hose, air is pulled through the charcoal and into the bowl holding the tobacco. The hot air, heated by the charcoal vaporizes (not burns) the tobacco, thus producing smoke, which is passed down through the body tube that extends into the water in the jar. It bubbles up through the water, losing heat, and fills the top part of the jar, to which the hose is attached. When a smoker inhales from the hose, smoke passes into the lungs, and the change in pressure in the jar pulls more air through the charcoal, continuing the process.

If the hookah has been lit and smoked but has not been inhaled for an extended period, the smoke inside the water jar may be regarded as “stale” and undesirable. Stale smoke may be exhausted through the purge valve, if present. This one-way valve is opened by the positive pressure created from gently blowing into the hose. It will not function on a multiple-hose hookah unless all other hoses are plugged. Sometimes one-way valves are put in the hose sockets to avoid the need to manually plug hoses.

How it affects your health?
A 2005 WHO report states that smoking using a waterpipe poses a serious potential health hazard and is not a safe alternative to cigarette smoking. The average hookah session typically lasts more than 40 minutes, and consists of 50 to 200 inhalations that each range from 0.15 to 0.50 liters of smoke.  In an hour-long smoking session of hookah, users consume about 100 to 200 times the volume of smoke of a cigarette. The chemical compositions of cigarette smoke and hookah smoke are different, however, as the workings of the charcoal in the modern hookah causes the tobacco mixture to be heated to a lower temperature, as opposed to the higher temperature in a cigarette where the tobacco is directly burnt. Consequently, the potential health effects of hookah smoke are expected to be very different.

Despite a different chemical composition of the smoke, it is expected that heavy and long term use still has the potential to lead to diseases generally induced by tobacco, notably chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Mixtures with lighter concentrations or tobacco-free alternatives (e.g. tobamel, tea-leaf, molasses and glycerin-soaked stones) are widely available and aim to reduce the negative effects of tobacco.

A 2008 aetiological study on hookah smoking and cancer led by a group of Pakistani researchers found that overall serum CEA levels (as a biological marker for cancer) in exclusive hookah smokers, who had been using weight equivalents of up to 60 cigarettes of tobacco in daily sessions for decades, were higher than in non-smokers but substantially lower than those recorded in cigarette smokers considering the same amount of tobacco. The study also concluded that heavy and non-moderate hookah smoking (2–4 daily preparations; 3–8 sessions a day; 2 to 6 hours net daily smoking time) substantially raises CEA levels.

Where to find it in Nepal?

Shisha Terrace Cafe & Bar
Restaurants/Dinner
Thamel, Kathmandu

Shisha Cafe
Restaurants / Dinner
New Road, Kathmandu

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