There’s a new kind of cocoa out there that’s a little loco.
As Rolling Stone reported, Legal Lean, a supplement company based out of Orlando, recently announced a new energizer called Coco Loko, which, according to the company, gives customers a 30-minute buzz.
The supplement, which comes in a jar and is a brown powder, is actually snortable. The company cliams Coco Loko the“drug-free chocolate powder will lift moods, reduce anxiety, and give you a surge of energy,” according to Rolling Stone.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has yet to approve the substance, according to Rolling Stone.
Here’s what we know so far about the powder and its potentially damaging effects.
Legal Lean CEO Nick Anderson said the product is “probably equal to about two energy drinks,” ABC News reported.
Here’s more from Anderson: “It’s designed to give you an endorphin rush and a serotnin release. It gives you euphoric energy a little pep in your step, somethin’ extra to party and makes you get in the mood to enjoy your night.”
Anderson also told ABC News that the company doesn’t offer its caffeine content information.
He told ABC that an overdose is unlikely. “There is a very little bit of guarana, very little bit of the taurine, there is a very little bit of everything, it’s mostly the raw cacao. It makes up nearly 90 percent of the ingredients, so to overdose on chocolate and to have any health concerns you would have to eat like 10 pounds or some huge number.”
The company said the powder will offer a “a rush of endorphins and serotonin, boost energy, and bring about a sense of calm,” according to Rolling Stone. But there’s no scientific proof of that possibility.
Previous studies have linked raw cacao to improving brain power, as well as offering antioxidants and mood-lifting chemicals.
Doctors question the product, though. Dr. Christopher Holstege, the chief of the Division of Medical Toxicology at the University of Virginia, told ABC News that the product raises concerns for children, people with asthma and those with growing lungs.
Dr. Jason Russell, an osteopathic physician at the Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio, also told ABC that the powder could create problems similar to energy supplements, like insomnia and high blood pressure.
A Legal Lean spokesman told WESH-TV in Orlando, Florida, that it can also be mixed with water, but could “impair your ability to drive.”
Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., has called for federal regulators to investigate the product, saying that it’s pitched in way that’s appealing to kids, according to the Associated Press.
From Schumer: “This suspect product has no clear health value,” he said in a statement. “I can’t think of a single parent who thinks it is a good idea for their children to be snorting over-the-counter stimulants up their noses.”
Meanwhile, Dr. Richard Lebowitz, an associate professor at New York University’s Department of Otolaryngology, told Time that humans shouldn’t be snorting any product, since it can affect your nasal lining, lungs and respiratory tracts.
“The nose conditions the air you breathe in, in addition to cleaning it,” Lebowitz told Time. “If it’s not doing its job, the air you breathe into your lungs isn’t as good for you.”