I just spotted this ridiculous article with five-thousand plus upvotes on Reddit's front page, Hookah Packs 25 Times the Tar of a Single Cigarette (Men's Fitness). IF you are not doing it right it is possible a hookah session would be so bad. These studies are so rigged, this article is just referring to a compilation of bogus research! Not even a new study. The tobacco industry and the pharmaceutical companies do not want people to use "smoking cessation" like E-cigs. They'd rather have you stuck on their crap like Chantix which has terrible SFX, like suicide and headaches, and a poor success rate compared to E-cigs, SNUS and hookah.
These "scientists" hook a hookah up to a vacuum basically and and it just sucks in like nobody ever would. Nobody tends to the charcoals and the bowl is probably packed like hell. If a person tried smoking like this they would cough their ass off and get a massive headache. There is also a valve for clearing the hookah and allowing fresh air into the chamber. As far as these so-called studies go it is not how people smoke hookah. If anything the usage of aluminum foil for the screen is the most unhealthy thing but I NEVER see anything about that. As for carbon monoxide, there are electronic heated ceramic coils that negate that entirely. Also tobacco is not the only surrogate for the fruit juice that is effectively vaporized, if done right. For instance sugar cane and other herbs, so no nicotine!
I have extensively read these studies and they are the equivalent of Thomas Edison electrocuting animals to "prove" how Nicola Tesla's AC power is evil. They do the same with E-cigs, they hotbox rats for weeks on end then promote the "negative" effects (I heard about this study and I cannot readily find it so sorry for not sourcing).
In Sweden SNUS, E-cigs and hookah are not demonized but embraced for their practicality in ending tobacco addiction. So hookah responsibly and use this logic to counteract the haters.