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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Inhalable caffeine not a good idea

    There’s a new inhaler on the market that isn’t just reserved for people with breathing problems. Breathable Foods Inc. just released AeroShot Pure Energy, an inhaler filled with a mixture of caffeine and energizing vitamins to enable your fix in one effortless puff.

    Harvard professor David Edwards’ innovation allows you to inhale your caffeine.

    According to the product’s website, a couple of its advantages are its ability to go anywhere and its instant effects. If you’re feeling groggy in class and you can’t leave, or you’re in a room where no drinks are allowed, you can now pull out the AeroShot device, take a hit and get back in the zone.

    AeroShot may quickly become the new party drug. Even though AeroShot’s website says the product isn’t intended to be mixed with alcohol, that doesn’t mean people won’t.

    Shortly after energy drinks like Red Bull and Monster surfaced, so did the idea to marry them with alcohol for an enhanced, intoxicated experience. Once the mix swept colleges and party scenes across the nation, so did the research labeling the potent combination as highly dangerous.

    In a study released last month by the journal Addictive Behaviors, the findings reiterated caffeine’s power to skin a person’s perceptions and cognitively mask alcohol’s effects.

    Another example is the rise and crash of canned, caffeinated alcoholic beverages like Phusion Projects’ Four Loko. In November 2010, after a reported rise in hospitalizations and deaths, the Food and Drug Administration issued warning letters to Phusion Projects and three similar companies to cease the manufacturing of these types of beverages, according to the FDA’s website.

    AeroShot meets FDA guidelines, but so did Four Loko at its birth. Now the drink is back on store shelves without caffeine and stimulants.

    Again, the trouble with AeroShot isn’t its contents. The idea of people needing to have an inhaler filled with caffeine is a little over the top, but caffeine is a dietary staple for countless college students. There’s not an excessive amount of caffeine in one AeroShot canister, with each holding roughly 100 milligrams total — the equivalent to one cup of coffee. But that doesn’t mean people will stop at one inhaler.

    Despite the scientific findings, people will still guzzle vodka and Red Bull as long as it gets the job done. Products like AeroShot are making this dangerous practice all the more readily available.

    When going out for the night, students can throw AeroShot inhalers into their pockets or purses and achieve that same dangerous buzz with any alcoholic beverage. If you must puff, please puff responsibly.

    — Kelly Hultgren is a senior studying journalism and communication. She can be reached at letters@wildcat.arizona.edu or on Twitter via @WildcatOpinions.

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