18 Jul Powdered Alcohol May Make Consumption Dangerously Easy
The combination of caffeine and alcohol has been a popular choice on college campuses in the last decade. The interaction of the two substances proved dangerous, with many students finding that they drank more when caffeine was part of the mix.
Now a new form of alcohol may lead to increased alcohol consumption. An article published in Medical Daily discusses the introduction of powdered alcohol. Mimicking the convenience of soft drink mixes that come in a packet for stirring into a water bottle, the substance could make drinking alcohol much too convenient.
The substance is being called Palcohol and has been approved by the U.S. Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB). It may be just a few months before Palcohol can be seen on store shelves with flavors like Mojito, Powderita, Cosmopolitan and Lemon Drop.
The product was developed for convenience, allowing the consumer to have alcohol anywhere they can find a water source. However, the use of the product is more flexible, enabling Palcohol to be sprinkled on food and, some fear, snorted for a quick hit of alcohol.
There has been some concern, even by the company producing the Palcohol, that the substance will become a popular snorting substance on college campuses and elsewhere. The company’s website features a statement addressing the topic, saying that the volume of Palcohol has been adjusted to deter this type of use. A person wanting a quick hit of alcohol would be required to snort about a half-cup of powder to experience the equivalent of one drink through snorting. The company is hoping that the pain of such a practice would exceed its benefits.
While it openly discourages the snorting of the product, the company also openly encourages the use of Palcohol as a seasoning on meals. With a nod to dishes that incorporate wine, beer or other spirits in cooking, the producers of Pa lcohol encourage cooks to use the product to enhance their dishes. The website says that Powderita in a guacamole recipe is an example of how to appropriately use the substance to liven up a dish.
The company does discourage the seasoning of food that a child or teenager may be eating. However, because Palcohol is new to the market, it seems that further precaution should be taken. Foods including Palcohol should be clearly labeled that they contain uncooked alcohol.
The creator of Palcohol, Mark Phillips, dreamed up Palcohol after finding himself in situations where he wanted a drink but didn’t have a convenient way to pack alcohol, such as when reaching a destination on a bike ride.
The host of a public television series, called Enjoying Wine with Mark Phillips, Mark is also a fan of outdoor activities, including hiking, kayaking, biking and camping. Finding that powdered alcohol was not available, Phillips decided to create something to fill the gap.
A package of Palcohol is only about an ounce and can be slipped into a pocket for later enjoyment. However, this convenience may also be appreciated by underage drinkers looking for a way to carry alcohol in an inconspicuous way.
While the product may not be an enjoyable substance to snort, it may be easy for college students to double up on the powder they use in a measure of water to make it more potent. Getting drunk quickly is often celebrated by college students and can result in serious consequences.
Heavy drinking is associated with multiple negative consequences. Increased risk of heart disease and certain types of cancer are both associated with heavy drinking. In addition, those who engage in heavy alcohol consumption increase the likelihood that they will be involved in an assault, injury or risky sexual behaviors.
The portability of this product is what makes it so convenient for consumers who may want to enjoy alcohol in remote places. However, it is also what makes it so convenient for underage drinkers and college students to get drunk quickly and hide the product from parents or campus authorities.
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