A "cousin" of Four Loko, the beverage once marketed as "liquid cocaine," is promising to deliver the same effects of the controversial vice in the form of a chocolate powder that can be snorted up one's nose.
Nick Anderson, founder of Legal Lean and the new product, Coco Loko, in Orlando, Florida, says he came up with the idea of the "nose candy" following overhearing of a trend in Europe where people sniff a mixture of powdered chocolate and other legal substances for a cheap buzz.
"At first, I was like, 'Is this a hoax?,'" the 29-year-old told the Denver Post on Tuesday.
That is until, according to Anderson, he took his own nose dive and snorted some for himself.
"And then I tried it," Anderson continued, "and it was like, OK, this is the future right here."
Following his first impression, Anderson went on to invest $10,000 of his own money into concocting his own take of the European snuff solution from "raw cacao powder," which Anderson says he created from scratch over a two-month period.
"Some versions, they just burned [the sinuses] too much," Anderson explained of some of the failed attempts, "[while others] looked gray and dull, or didn't have enough stimulants."
After his ninth miss, Anderson claimed that he finally worked out the perfect mixture."Along with cacao powder, the product contains gingko bilboa, taurine and guarana," the New York Post reports of Coco Loko's ingredients that are also "commonly found in energy drinks like Red Bull and Monster."
"The reported result is a sharp energy kick that lasts 30 minutes to an hour, triggering an endorphin rush without the side effects of a sugar crash," the latter publication notes of its effects."It's almost like an energy-drink feeling," Anderson added, "like you're euphoric, but also motivated [enough] to get things done."
While that may be so, doctors who are aware of Coco Loko and its ingredients say that the non-FDA-regulated product contains specific compounds, namely everything outside of the cacao powder, that have been known to be severely bad for a person's health.
"The question is, what are the risks of doing it?," Dr. Andrew Lane, a director of the Johns Hopkins Sinus Center, queried to the New York Post.
"There's no data [out] and as far as I can tell, no one's studied what happens if you inhale chocolate into your nose. [But then], maybe I'm not in the in-crowd."Getting a little more serious on the matter, Dr. Lane went on to note that there are some "obvious" concerns about anyone snorting anything, chocolate included, up their nostrils for a continuous period of time, like Coco Loko.
"First, it's not clear how much of each ingredient would be absorbed into the nasal mucus membranes. And, well, putting solid material into your nose – you could imagine it getting stuck in there, or the chocolate mixing with your mucus to create a paste that could block your sinuses."The Coco Loko chocolate snort powder is sold in tins and can be purchased now for $24.99 through the Legal Lean website and Amazon.
[Featured Image by Artiseer/iStock]