A Harvard professor has invented and unleashed the AeroShot, an inhalable form of caffeine, complete with B vitamins. A blast of it costs about three bucks, and is available in convenience stores in Massachusetts and New York, and from online sources like the AeroShots Shop, with free shipping within the USA, no less!
David Edwards, AeroShot's inventor and a professor of biomedical engineering, said that the product he's created is safe. It doesn't have taurine, an additive often found in energy drinks. Each little plastic container's dose contains 100 milligrams of caffeine powder, which is equivalent to a large cup of coffee.
According to his website, Dr. Edwards has done pioneering work on inhaled forms of insulin. I guess the inhaled form of caffeine is a logical extension of the inhaler technology.
To my mind, one advantage is that the product can be consumed on the go, and in places where it wouldn't be appropriate to sit and sip a cup of coffee -- long night shifts at busy jobs, long drives, long study sessions in the library where no food or beverages are allowed.
The main disadvantage that comes to mind is the potential for abuse. It would just be too easy to take too much too fast, although it says right on the package that you shouldn't take more than three a day. Unfortunately, partying people don't usually pay much attention to the small print on the package.
I am intrigued, if a little horrified. I haven't been able to bring myself to try the little 5 hour energy drink that's been sitting on my shelf for about a year, since my husband brought it home. I only eye it suspiciously when I walk by the pantry. And yet, I'd probably check out an inhalable coffee powder, if only for the novelty. Those of us who spend our days sitting in front of our computers do seem to have a certain moth-to-a-flame relationship with caffeine.
Of course, all the standard health warnings apply here. Don't abuse caffeine, it's not good for people with high blood pressure, it can make you sleepless and anxious, and is best enjoyed in moderation. If your doctor has told you to stay away from it, it's best to heed that advice.
What do you think? Will you be literally inhaling your caffeine? Let us know in the TalkBacks below, and if you have tried it, please tell us what it's like.