Herbal stimulants are increasingly popular, especially on the summer rock festival circuit. Herbal ecstasy, a blend of mildly psychoactive herbs or herb extracts, is openly sold as a "safe" alternative to ecstasy (MDMA). However, many types contain the drug ephedrine and can be extremely dangerous.
Herbal ecstasy is not a controlled substance.
Herbal ecstasy is usually sold in capsules.
Another herbal alternative is khat, a mild amphetamine-like stimulant derived from a leafy plant that grows in eastern Africa and the Arabian peninsula.
- Said to be like having a small dose of amphetamine; it makes the user euphoric and talkative. It can also have calming effects.
- Chewing khat causes inflammation of the mouth and infections, and overuse can cause cancer of the mouth.
- Prolonged and regular use of khat may cause depression, anxiety and irritability.
- Because it's a mild stimulant, energy, awareness and perception are likely to be increased, but how much and for how long depends on exactly what's in it. Some people claim that it has similar effects to ecstasy, but others have said that it's no more stimulating than a cup of coffee or a glass of cola.
- Herbal ecstasy that contains ephedrine can have unpleasant side effects, which may include jitteriness, tremors, headaches, insomnia, nausea and vomiting, fatigue, dizziness, chest pains and palpitations.
Khat is not a controlled substance in the UK.
Khat leaves are either chewed fresh or brewed into a tea. They're totally impure.
STIMULANTS ARE DANGEROUS FOR ANYONE WITH A HEART CONDITION OR HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE