Zyn pouches known as 'gas station Ozempic' possibly dangerous, expert says

Zyn nicotine pouches have gone viral on social media in recent months for various reasons. Some users have claimed that they give you a "high" or a boost of energy. The pouches have also been called "gas station Ozempic" because they supposedly suppress the appetite, leading to fast and cheap weight loss.

Sam Tejada, a functional health and wellness expert and author, recently spoke to FOX 5 Atlanta about health risks associated with the usage of nicotine pouches and alternative ways to lose weight safely. 

According to Tejada, one issue is how quickly the drug becomes addictive. It affects dopamine and serotonin levels in the brain, leading to a chemical imbalance in the body. 

"Once you start experiencing that, you’re looking for that feeling over and over," said Tejada. 

The author of How to Win at Modern Wellness also highlighted that nicotine is known to cause cardiovascular, respiratory, gastric, and stomach issues. 

While the low price of the nicotine pouches certainly makes them attractive, there are other affordable and much safer options, including Tejada’s full-service wellness center or any other medical center or doctor who can provide information and guidance that leads to healthy, safe weight loss. 

"Throughout the years of building Liquidvida, we started adding a lot of these alternative modalities to take care of the patient’s overall health, and weight loss is one of those modalities," explained Tejada. 


However, Tejada stressed that while various methods are beneficial and effective when proven safe, they are only a kickstart to a successful weight-loss journey. 

Tejada, who has lost over 40 pounds, advises that "the answer [to weight loss] is making those lifestyle changes, understanding part of those lifestyle changes, understanding what to eat, and what’s good for your body."  

Tejada also said that he stays away from the word exercise because some people are frightened by that. Instead, he tells them to move their bodies. Consistent movement is key. Start off at least 20 minutes a day. If you have a dog, them for a walk. If you like to garden during the summer months, go out and garden nonstop for 20 or 30 minutes. Go hiking or kayaking or swimming. Do things that are fun. Connect to nature. The most important thing is to move your body. 

Where did Zyn come from?

Zyn nicotine pouches were introduced by the international tobacco giant Swedish Match in 2014. Philip Morris bought the company in 2022. They can easily be found in most gas stations and convenience stores, although a shortage has recently been reported in some areas. 

The pouches are intended for adults 21 and older as an alternative to smoking or dipping. However, the younger generation has discovered them for different reasons.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1 in every 100 high school students reported last year that they used nicotine pouches in the last 30 days. 

That is far less than the 10% that said they used e-cigarettes, but the millions of views on videos of young people popping the pouches on social media have experts worried that the number will rise dramatically in the future. 

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Additionally, a generous awards program similar to the ones that were used by Marlboro and Camel has also enticed younger people into buying the pouches. 

Since Zyn has only been around for 10 years, all the long-term health effects are still unknown. At this time, they are not approved by the FDA, but they have been allowed to remain on the market while they review Philip Morris' marketing application.