Drinking a hot cup of joe might not be enough of a caffeine jolt for some teens who apparently have turned to smoking coffee for a different kind of caffeine rush that doctors warn could be dangerous.
While you might not have heard of this technique — one that involves rolling grounds or even the whole bean in cigarette paper or glass tubes —doctors told WCCB-TV that it’s not actually a new trend, though they have supposedly seen a recent spike.
“I needed something fast, cheap and easy that delivered the caffeinated experience my patrons crave. After some soul-searching in the alleyways of the more dubious neighborhoods near my hometown, I found it,” one tutorial detailing how to smoke coffee posted online last year states.
The author of the tutorial described the experience as a “vaporization of the bean [that] produces none of the characteristic bitterness of brewed coffee.”
A user on the online forum Reddit who wrote about smoking coffee grounds in a post a couple of years ago titled “Stupid idea of the week” said that while it “does work,” he didn’t recommend doing it often as the health effects have not been studied.
“I also don’t recommend doing it at midnight when you have class the next morning — it will keep you up. Unless, of course, you need to study: then, I highly recommend it. If you need a long-lasting burst of energy, you could do a lot worse than smoking a coffee joint. If you have nothing to do and you don’t need to sleep for a while, a coffee joint is a great way to spend a few hours,” the user wrote.
Side effects of smoking coffee beans, according to WCCB, can include breathing trouble, dizziness, vomiting and hallucinations.