In the late 19th Century, Doc Pemberton set out to create a soft drink that Georgia residents could enjoy in the muggy summer months. The darling wonder drugs of his day were cocaine and caffeine, so Pemberton put both in his recipe. His cocaine source was the coca leaf and his caffeine source was the kola nut, so he dubbed his product Coca-Cola. As you may be aware, the product turned out to be reasonably successful.
Of course today cocaine is a controlled substance. But caffeine, which isn’t, is enjoying a resurgence of sorts. It is the not-so-secret ingredient in myriad so-called “energy products.” A recent entry is Sheets brand “energy strips,” from Purebrands, soon to be endorsed by Miami Heat star LeBron James.
If you consider the definition of energy, these products are nothing of the sort. For some reason, marketers seem to have chosen against the more accurate term, “psychoactive stimulant.”