Date: Fri, 25 Aug 1995 19:58:30 -0400
From: "Claudette A. Aras" <Carras.AOL.COM>
Subject: Re: herbal ecstasy
Sorry this is a bit long as well as a bit late - our newly- installed modem glitched for some days. However, I felt this reply to my outside inquiry for more info on herbal ecstasy was interesting enuf to share, so I'm re-posting to the list the following document which came to me from an _urban shaman_:
Info on this putative herbal ecstasy you asked about has been all over the national news for a month or so now. It is advertising hype, impure bunk with a lot of caffeine and ephedrine. Between the the two, if you don't get some sort of a heart pounding buzz off this expensive crap you're probably dead.
The immediate outcome of this exploitative hype will be to give herbalism a bad name and give Big Brother still another excuse to bring his jack-booted thug heel down hard on health food and herb stores, and further restrict the sale of a number of these ingredients - along with anything that even remotely resembles them -anything with leaves, for instance...
The worst possible outcome is that it will induce the fed to be even more intransigent about legalizing the legitimate clinical study and use of MDMA by scaring mr&mrs suburban parent with pictures of their kids dropping in the street from caffeine/ephedrine overdoses and then blaming it on/relating it to the term 'ecstasy'. There have been a number of unpleasant medical complications reported by people who have used herbal ecstasy - such as hospitalization.
The people marketing herbal xtasy in this manner should be shut down before their lust for short term gain deprives everyone else of valuable herbal medicine resources.
The only thing in there that's even remotely entheogenic is the Cinnamomum Cassia - plants in that nutmeg family have an indole-containing oil that is the organic basis for synthesis of MDMA and MMDA. You'd have to eat enough of it to make you puke though to get even faint imagery. You'd get a cheaper and more effective buzz taking a couple over-the-counter ephedrine-based diet pills with a handful of No-Doze and a tablespoon of nutmeg.
This Herbal Xtasy is NOT a good thing to take. Considering the quantities of this material you'd have to ingest to get jacked up enough to imagine you're experiencing psychotropic effects, you're probably medicinally better off with the real and wonderful circa 1914 - yes, it's been around that long -presently illegal version, MMDA - and the price would be about the same. It's a sad commentary on American life that this herbal ecstasy product which yields such a poor, low grade change in consciousness could be so warmly welcomed.
What I see, aside from the very real possibility of cardiac involvement in some subjects, as the most unfortunate thing about herbal xtasy, is that 1000's of deluded people not only think they're being virtuous by taking a legal substitute for an illegal drug - but actually think they've experienced MDMA.
Nothing could be further from the truth. My take on the whole phenomena is that people are desperate for some kind of change - any kind of change. The real MDMA isn't particularly sexual, if that's what one is looking for - I always perceived it as more intellectual - but then, I'm a person who thinks the ultimate aphrodisiac is intelligence/consciousness.
From: jonathan treasure <jtreasure.JONNO.DEMON.CO.UK>
A pal of mine who has laboratory facilties in the UK (being in the tincture production business) has had a look at the UK version of Herbal E. Perhaps most worrying is that the Ma Huang is contained as powdered extract form. This is highly concentrated and he computed it at 5-600mgm per capsule. Around here the kids are taking up to dozen caps at a time - that constitutes a massive dose of pseudoephedrine and other alkaloids which speeds up BOTH the heart rate and contractility - extremely bad news for anyone with undiagnosed hypertension, arrythmias etc. 6 grams is way way over recommended weekly dosage in the UK Schedule 3 which classifies MH as a restricted herb. This is a silly and potentially dangerous dose - especially since the capsules are circulated with the cache of being "safe" ie being herbal. But then - I seem to remember ingesting a lot worse, along with many of my contemporaries, when I was a young foolish etc etc teenager.....
I do not know if the UK and USA versions of herbal E are the same. True Ma Huang (E.sinensis) is rather more potent than some of the native US Ephedras (Mormon Tea etc) so generalisations are probably not valid even if the weights, mixtures and capsule sizes etc may be the same.
More information would be useful - anyone?
From: Paul Iannone <p_iannone.POP.COM>
: True Ma Huang (E.sinensis) is rather more potent than some of the native US Ephedras (Mormon Tea etc)
I see no reason to imagine that they would be using anything other than Chinese ephedra in the product here in the States.