In many of my blogs I’ve written about legitimate drug trends as well as fascinating new, and illegal, street drug concoctions. But there is one drug that has remained at the top of the popularity chart for centuries!
It’s been called the oldest and best-known drug in the world! It still ranks as one of the top stimulant drugs across the globe and is valued highly in many cultures.
If you’ve guessed caffeine, than you’d be absolutely correct. As I take a moment to sip from my cup, I realize that nothing quite puts me “in the zone” like a swallow of my favorite morning java.
Caffeine was first isolated from coffee in 1820, confirming that the mood and behavior altering properties of coffee and tea were actually the result of the caffeine contained within those beans and leaves. And the love affair with this tantalizing chemical has not waned over the centuries. In our modern world, we’ve even found ways to create interesting cultural behaviors around the drug (from the smoke-filled coffee houses of the past to today’s gourmet coffee hangouts).
Arguably, caffeine is one of the most widely used, and one of the most accepted, addictive drugs in the world. Whether it comes in the form of coffee, tea, chocolate, various kola nut products, guarana fruit, yaupon holly leaves or yerba matte, caffeine is responsible for waking up the world’s population and giving them that periodic and predictable “jolt” throughout the day to keep people alert and productive.
There are even cottage industries which shortcut the “waking up process” by adding substantial caffeine into breakfast foods, like muffins and even brownies, so that the morning jolt of caffeine also becomes the food of choice to start the day.
The FDA states that an intake of up to about 400mg per day of caffeine is safe, or at least not associated with any negative health effects. However, studies show that anyone who regularly consumes as little as 300mg of caffeine per day (about 3 cups of regular drip coffee) will experience withdrawal symptoms if they abruptly cut off their caffeine intake.
An interesting recent evolution, however, has begun to invade the world of coffee products. Now it’s possible to bypass the entire process of prepackaged caffeine-laced food and drink products and buy Pure Pharmaceutical Grade Caffeine Powder online in sizes ranging from a third of an ounce (10 grams) to more than two pounds (1kg).
Pharmaceutical grade caffeine is extremely potent with a suggested serving size of only 1/16th of a teaspoonful (equivalent to about 2 cups of coffee). The predominant use for such a pure product is for athletes and body builders to use the chemical for its performance enhancing qualities and stimulation of fat loss. The product even comes with a small measuring device so that one can measure out a 250mg serving. Athletes use one to two scoop measures about a half hour before weight training to increase their workout intensity or about three hours before an aerobic workout to maximize fat burning.
The problem arises when this readily available product falls into the hands of people less knowledgeable about the lethal effects of pure caffeine powder. A lethal dose of pure caffeine is said to range from 150-200mg per kg of body weight (or about 10-15gms of pure caffeine powder—a mere large spoonful).
The product looks innocent enough. It appears as a bitter-tasting white powder that looks similar to cornstarch. It mixes moderately in water-based liquids at room temperature and is readily soluble in boiling water.
The taste is easily disguised when mixed in flavored food or drinks. In fact, news reports state that people from early teens to advanced adulthood have died as a result of pure caffeine mixed into the products they consume.
Recently, a teenage boy died after consuming 1 teaspoonful of pure pharmaceutical grade caffeine mixed in a liquid. That amount of stimulant translates to consuming over 30 cups of coffee in a short period of time—well above the lethal limit.
Death often results from heart failure since the stimulant drug causes such a rapid heart beat that the heart muscle simply cannot keep up the pace.
So if you’re looking for an interesting—yet easily available and easy to use—murder weapon/drug for your next storyline, pure pharmaceutical grade caffeine may be the answer.
But for a quick “pick-me-up” to write that story, be sure to reach for a second cup of java rather than for a teaspoonful of caffeine powder, no matter how easy or how inexpensive it is to find on the Internet.
Thoughts? Comments? I’d love to hear them!
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