For what these kind of things are worth, a panes of experts have predicted that sniffing tobacco would reduce health risks associated to smoking
An overall consensus was reached that the introduction of a new LN-SLT product under strict regulations would increase SLT use, but reduce overall smoking prevalence. This reduction would likely yield substantial health benefits, but uncertainties surround the role of marketing and other tobacco control policies.
What about chewing tobacco, as many baseball players do (or did)? I guess that any of these things would be much better than using nicotine patches...