POSTED: Wednesday, February 22, 2012 - 5:10pm
UPDATED: Wednesday, February 22, 2012 - 5:11pm
FDA eyes caffeine inhalers that promise the same jolt as a cup of coffee.
The latest caffeine craze to hit the market could be mistaken for a tube of lipstick or breath spray.
Inhalable caffeine containers give users a jolt of caffeine, but some experts are concerned this new boost is actually a downer for your health.
The instructions are simple: Pull open, puff in, push closed.
Each container has B-vitamins and 100 milligrams of caffeine, the equivalent of a large cup of coffee.
Caffeine inhalers like the Aeroshot and Primer are marketed as "dietary supplements" -- a category that does not require approval from the Food and Drug Administration before hitting store shelves.
It's up to manufacturers to ensure the products are safe, but now the FDA is reviewing whether caffeine inhalers meet legal qualifications as supplements after all.
"Breathable energy complies with all FDA dietary supplement guidelines, and we think it's a safe and healthy way to consume your energy," says Breathable Foods CEO Tom Hadfield.
Some doctors say the way caffeine gets into the body may not be safe or healthy.
"You absorb it much more quickly and at a higher percentage if you inhale it than you would if you drink something, so it's easier to get into trouble faster," warns Dr. Cynthia Lewis-Younger, medical director of Florida Poison Control.
Too much caffeine can cause an increased heart rate, insomnia and irritability.
Manufacturers of the Aeroshot say you should not have more than three a day and advise people who are pregnant, sensitive to caffeine, or under age 12 avoid the products.
Some experts have expressed concerns inhalable caffeine users will combine the products with alcohol -- and end up drinking more than they usually would.