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Zantac has been recalled. What should employees take instead?

Updated: Jan 14, 2020

by Al Lewis

This may be “old news” because your wellness vendor may have already alerted your employees (not), but any Zantac they own should be thrown out or returned for a refund.

Friday, Zantac got recalled from all shelves (two weeks after being recalled from all Quizzify questions). This is due to low levels of a cancer-causing contaminant. Many questions about this contaminant are still unanswered, so it is unclear when if at all Zantac will be back on the market.

Until then, your employees will be switching to other heartburn drugs. We strongly advise against taking Prilosec, Nexium or Prevacid nightly for an extended period of time. This is not us speaking – this is their labels.

Here's why.


First, it’s generally not a good idea to take any drug for an extended period that is not designed for long-term use. For example, we’ve cautioned before that long-term use of over-the-counter sleep aids increase risk of dementia.

Second, this is specifically the case with the drugs employees are most likely to switch to – Prilosec, Nexium or Prevacid.

Our “Six Things” blog series has recommended many other solutions, both to avoid heartburn and to treat it


We would encourage you to read those Six Things postings, and make the information available to your employees, so that they can switch to something other than those three drugs. That’s because the particular suspected (not proven, but we’re not waiting around for proof, given the length of this list) long-term adverse effects of these three drugs and their generic equivalents include:

  • Vitamin B12 deficiency

  • Magnesium deficiency

  • Diarrhea caused by a pesky bacterium

  • Thinning bones and fractures (see the video!)

  • Kidney problems

  • Heart attacks

  • Cutaneous and systemic lupus erythematosus events (an autoimmune disease – likely as unpleasant as it sounds).

Those of you who are already Quizzify customers have a special-edition quiz awaiting you in your admin panel. You can swap out your entire November quiz for it, or pick-and-choose using the “replace” option.

Those of you who aren’t, should be. Contact us now.


Quizzify provides the education employees need to be health-literate, wiser and more confident healthcare consumers

Teach employees how to navigate the ins and outs of their health benefits and gain valuable information about better health practices. With quizzes reviewed by doctors at Harvard Medical School, Quizzify helps employees live healthier lives and save money on healthcare... without collecting any private health information.

Benefits are of no value if employees don’t use them. You can customize Quizzify so that your quiz questions can explain exactly what the value is...and our “learn more” links can point employees to exactly where they need to go.


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