Poppers are being accidentally mistaken for energy drinks

Energy Shot bottle compared to a Poppers bottle

Poppers are being accidentally mistaken for energy drinks


People are falling seriously ill and even dying as a result of drinking poppers, mistaking them for energy drinks.

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has revealed that it is continuing to receive reports of people becoming ill from drinking poppers and are asking people to stop.

Poppers are a liquid chemical (alkyl nitrites) and are sold in small bottles and often used as a recreational drug.

These small bottles mean that some are confusing them energy-shot beverages that have similar packaging, epecially as many popper bottles are marketed with names such as “rush,” “liquid gold,” and “buzz”.

Sign up to our free Indy100 weekly newsletter

When inhaled, the chemical dilates blood vessels, often leading to users experiencing a lightheaded high. Whilst sniffing the liquid is the normal way of consuming, although still poses many risks, drinking the liquid can prove fatal.

In 2021, Judy McMeekin, an Associate commissioner for Regulatory affairs explained the danger of poppers, saying: “These chemicals can be caustic and damage the skin or other tissues they come in contact with, cause difficulty breathing, extreme drops in blood pressure, decreases in blood oxygen levels, seizures, heart arrhythmia, coma, and death. Do not ingest or inhale under any circumstances.”

McMeekin added: “Used as a recreational drug, they can cause serious health issues. They are not worth your life.”

Have your say in our news democracy. Click the upvote icon at the top of the page to help raise this article through the indy100 rankings.

The Conversation (0)