If you like to inhale your energy, you'd better act quick; caffeine inhalers are under the gun.
Aeroshot Caffeine Inhalers received a lot of press recently as the hot new way to get a blast of caffeine on the go. But a letter from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), delivered Tuesday to Breathable Foods, warned the makers of the product to bring their marketing in line with regulation.
Specifically, the FDA takes issue with the company's claims that the product is both "breathable" and "intended to be ingested by swallowing."
"A product cannot be intended for both inhalation and ingestion because the functioning of the epiglottis in the throat keeps the process of inhaling and swallowing separate," the FDA's press release states.
While biological impossibilities have surfaced as the cause for FDA scolding, it's quite possible the real motivation for federal action is shutting the product down before it catches the kind of steam caffeinated alcohol drink Four Loko did in 2011. Irked by its popularity and fearful of the damage it was wreaking on underage drinkers, the FDA banned the drink last year, banishing it to a second life as car fuel.
Rumor has it that the feds are unwilling to be put in a similar position again. The FDA is "worried about the possibility that AeroShot was marketing its product to teens and as a fun complement to alcoholic beverages," says Huffington Post reporter Joe Satran.
For its part, Breathable Foods responded to inquiries with a carefully crafted message: "We plan to work closely with the FDA to meet their requests for information and labeling changes to ensure compliance with dietary supplement requirements," CEO Tom Hadfield told the Huffington Post by email.
The same email contradicted its own promotional slogans by adding, "Aeroshot delivers a mix of B vitamins and caffeine to the mouth for ingestion and is not 'inhaled' into the lungs."
So make that, er...ingestible caffeine. Also known as coffee, soda, or tea.