The consensus on nicotine pouches is mostly positive, and they are marketed as a safer way to continue to enjoy nicotine. Despite this, it is still a good idea for users to know what is in their pouches.
So, let’s take a look at exactly what is in these products. For those who are unfamiliar with the appearance of nicotine pouches, they are sealed bags that are discreet in size and completely white. Generally, nicotine pouches consist of 7 main ingredients, including, nicotine, stabilisers, fillers, flavourings, PH adjusters and sweeteners. Sounding like a chemistry lesson? Do not click away just yet, as all will become clear in this breakdown of nicotine pouch ingredients.
The ingredient that we are all here for, and what the label warns us against. Nicotine is a stimulant drug that occurs naturally in the tobacco plant. Surprisingly, nicotine is also found in other species of the tobacco plant family, including potatoes and tomatoes! The nicotine in nicotine pouches is extracted from the tobacco plant, however, it is important to note that nicotine pouches contain NO tobacco. Despite nicotine having somewhat of a bad reputation, when consumed in moderation and in the form of a nicotine pouch that is (1) smokeless, and (2) tobacco-free, it may be as benign as a cup of coffee. Good news for us who enjoy the stimulating and sedating effects of nicotine.
Stabilisers maintain the consistency of a nicotine pouch. They are plant-based food additives, most commonly vegetable glycerine and propylene glycol, which are rest assured, safe for consumption. These stabilisers are important in maintaining moisture levels and can provide a base for flavour.
Before fillers are added, nicotine pouches are relatively low in volume. To combat this issue and increase ease of use and comfort in the lip, fillers are added. These fillers consist of plant-based fibres and/or gum base, which are again, safe for consumption.
FLAVOURINGS AND SWEETENERS
These are somewhat self-explanatory ingredients in nicotine pouches. Flavourings are added to…you guessed it, add flavour! Sweeteners? They make the pouches sweeter. Sarcasm aside, the flavourings and sweeteners found in nicotine pouches are food-grade, usually being sucralose and aspartame, which are both often found in products such as chewing gum and sugar-free beverages.
pH adjusters…the chemistry lesson alarm bells might be ringing at this point, but the concept is relatively simple. pH is a measure of acidity or basicity of a solution, and the absorption of the nicotine in nicotine pouches is dependent on the pH of them. A high pH is associated with high nicotine absorption and a lower pH with lesser absorption. Manufacturers add pH adjusters to determine the potency of the pouch. These adjusters are not as chemically complex as they sound, usually they are just minerals that are used in baked goods.
Hopefully, by now you are fully equipped to understand what exactly you are consuming when you place a pouch under your lip, that being, nicotine and mostly plant-based and food additives!
Nic Pouch UK