FDA investigating safety concerns around spray caffeine

PINELLAS PARK, Fla. - Coffee's been around for centuries, but some say it takes a century to consume it compared to new spray caffeine products.

"It's practically instantaneous," said Florida Poison Information Center Director Dr. Cynthia Lewis-Younger.

Three sprays of "Primer" energy breath spray, sold at Rockin' Cards & Gifts in Pinellas Park, gives the same amount of caffeine in one cup of coffee.

"It's really tough to get a hold of," explained store owner, Randy Heine.

Heine just got the high-demand engery spray last week. He's selling the lipstick-size tube for $4.95. Sixty sprays for about the price of only one large latte at Starbucks.

"You can't outlaw caffeine," he said.

But some are trying.

A similar product, Aeroshot, is now under FDA investigation.

The concern is that the product is instantly ingested, so your body doesn't break down the caffeine like it does with coffee.

"If you've already inhaled it, and you got 100% of the dose, you're not going to be able to control that," Dr. Lewis-Younger said. "People think a little bit is good, a lot is better. That's not true for everything."

Negative effects of caffeine overdose range from irritability to heart problems.

But Heine, a consumer of his own product, says he ingested three sprays and felt great, able to complete cleaning his house in just one day.

Heine claims he only sells to customers 18 and up.

He flies an American flag beside his spray caffeine sign and calls efforts to outlaw it "Unamerican".

"If you can fight a war at age 18, you can take a hit of caffeine," Heine said. "If you can't take a hit of caffeine in America, there's something wrong."

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