Cedars-Sinai Blog

Is Snortable Chocolate Safe?

Snortable chocolate could have long-term health effects.

Here's a fad to skip: Snorting chocolate.

Snorting chocolate powder been trendy in European clubs for a couple of years, and now a Florida company has imported the idea, mixing powered cocoa with energy drink ingredients. It's marketed as an energy-boosting "snuff." Not surprisingly, doctors think this is a terrible idea.

"Snorting any substance is a bad idea, and especially a powder," says Dr. Arthur Wu, a Cedars-Sinai sinus specialist.

He breaks it down into a few good reasons:

  • Any powder you snort into your nose can cause immediate short-term and long-term damage to the tissues in your nose. It can damage the membranes in the nose, potentially leading to injury and even holes in the nasal septum—the wall between your nostrils. Physical blockages, allergic reactions, inflammation, and infection are also possibilities. This can cause sinusitis, as well as asthma, bronchitis, and pneumonia in the lungs. Unless directed by your doctor, don't snort anything up your nose. (And in the case of medications, they will be mists and sprays, not powders.)
  • It's bad for your lungs. The lungs aren't designed to be a filter–one of the reasons the lungs of smokers and those who live in highly polluted areas suffer. Once something is trapped in the lungs, it stays there.
  • You don't know what you're getting. The snortable chocolate is classified as a supplement, so it doesn't have to be approved by the US Food and Drug Administration. Even if it's labeled, that label may not be accurate. You don't know for sure what the ingredients are or in what quantities they're present.

"If you're looking for a caffeine fix, there are much better ways," Dr. Wu says. "Just have an Americano or shot of espresso."

Plus, if you're not eating the chocolate, you're missing out on the best parts of the experience: the taste and texture.

"Chocolate is one of the joys of life," he says. "When you're going to indulge, get the best chocolate you can find, and enjoy every taste of it."

More from Dr. Wu on HealthlineSnorting Chocolate Powder Not a Smart Thing to Do