ZYN Nicotine Pouches: Side Effects, Pros, and Cons

Tobacco and nicotine alternatives have become increasingly popular as more cigarette smokers show interest in quitting the habit. In a Redox Biology study between cigarette smoke and nicotine products, researchers observed that alternative nicotine products have reduced damaging effects compared to conventional cigarettes. These detrimental effects include an earlier onset of inflammation compared to tobacco and nicotine alternatives. As such, those looking to quit are interested in these healthier options.

Nicotine alternatives come in different forms, from lozenges and gums to patches and pouches. We’ve previously posted our review of the Lucy nicotine gum that helps slowly release nicotine into the user’s system over several hours. Like other nicotine products, this helps reduce cravings and withdrawal symptoms, making quitting smoking easier. Today, we’ll look at nicotine pouches from the brand ZYN and discuss potential side effects, along with pros and cons:

What are ZYN nicotine pouches?

Compared to tobacco alternatives like e-cigarettes and heated tobacco products, nicotine pouches are like nicotine gums in that they are applied orally before being disposed of after some time. Nicotine pouches are placed between the user’s upper lip and gums to release the nicotine. This makes them a discreet and smokeless alternative for smokers trying to quit while avoiding withdrawal symptoms.

Analysis from Nasdaq found that Philip Morris became a significant player in the nicotine pouch industry after its $16 billion acquisition of Swedish Match, the producer of Zyn nicotine pouches. Notably, Zyn is the leader in pouches, and the acquisition helped Philip Morris gain a 76% market share in the segment, which has grown at a 44% compound annual growth rate since 2020. The success of ZYN in the market is attributed to its quality and convenience.

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Are there side effects to using ZYN nicotine pouches?

While ZYN pouches are generally safe to use, it’s important to note that they aren’t yet FDA-approved as a smoking cessation product. However, ZYN is regulated by the FDA as a tobacco product. Being relatively new to the market compared to older nicotine alternatives such as gums and patches, ZYN nicotine pouches may cause side effects depending on the user. Some of the side effects of ZYN include hiccups, an upset stomach, and a sore mouth. Due to how nicotine pouches are applied, you may need some time to adjust to the slight pressure, making your lip or mouth tender.

You could also have a sensitivity to some of the flavors offered by ZYN, so you can try non-flavored or non-mint pouches to see if these offer relief. If you feel side effects that are concerning or out of the ordinary outside of the nicotine buzz, seek help from a health professional. Alternatively, everyone responds to nicotine pouches differently, so you might want to try lower doses of nicotine or use fewer pouches throughout the day to help you adjust.

Pros and Cons of ZYN nicotine pouches

Lastly, we’ll end with some pros and cons of using ZYN nicotine pouches to help you decide for yourself.

One of the pros to using nicotine pouches is that their small size and handy packaging make them easy to travel with. Because they aren’t considered liquid or traditional tobacco products, there are no established restrictions against bringing ZYN pouches on planes. Note, however, that while some airlines may allow you to use ZYN pouches during the flight, it’s always good practice to check with the airline you’re flying with instead of getting in trouble later on.

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Because they are so easy to travel with and dispose of, ZYN pouches can be used discreetly in formal settings, such as an office or movie theater, where traditional smoking products may not be allowed.

As for the cons, aside from the potential side effects mentioned above, it’s important to remember that nicotine pouches are still new on the market. Therefore, there’s still a lack of studies and research on the long-term effects of using nicotine pouches. Ultimately, however, as mentioned in our introduction, the lack of smoke inhalation that comes with nicotine alternatives like ZYN nicotine pouches makes them considerably less dangerous than normal cigarettes.


  • Timothy P. Carnes

    Timothy P. Carnes is a certified personal trainer with a Bachelor's degree in Exercise Science from the University of Florida. With over 8 years of experience in the fitness industry, Timothy is an expert in strength and conditioning, body composition, and overall health and wellness. He also holds certifications in strength and conditioning through the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA) and corrective exercise through the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM). As an author at FitGAG, he shares his knowledge and expertise on a variety of topics, including strength training, body composition, and overall health and wellness tips. Timothy believes that consistency and discipline are the keys to achieving fitness goals, and he strives to inspire his readers to prioritize their fitness and wellness journey. Through his articles, Timothy aims to empower his readers to take control of their health, enhance their performance, and live their best lives.

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