Legal Highs are still available in New Zealand
I’m writing a series here on entheogens and legal highs in NZ. It’s been a confusing time since the psychoactive substances act came into force. While the law has not yet provided a scientific path to legal high drug testing (at least not without animal testing), it has however opened up a black market far scarier than what Peter Dunne and the public had ever imagined.
The new law also created some confusion around the definition of a psychoactive substance and what natural plants may or may not fall under the new bill.
Getting high or catching a buzz from your local health store or supermarket in NZ
As it turns out… nature, industry and the majority of middle class kiwis got to keep all their habitual highs, and some of them are pretty good.
The way the law was applied allows for religious, cultural, gardening, food and medicinal exceptions. It quite rightly ignores the majority of herbs that are mild enough to be sold in most major supermarket chains. You’d be surprised that there are a number of effective and useful plants still available to use.
Don’t expect any of these to be exactly like illicit drug experiences, or to replace your current habit, there’s a reason they aren’t banned, most of these are either ‘quirky’ or ‘mild’.
Though most hardened drug users with dopamine-depletion and serotonin synaptic fatigue may not get the “high” that they’re looking for, getting little out of them comparatively, they’re certainly effective both on their own, or to assist with tapering off harder drugs.
They are effective, but in their own way. Alternatives but not in the strict sense.
For the first article in this series, I am going to focus on the stimulant and psychedelic plants, and not those strictly prohibited from processing, like Salvia, Morning Glory, or San Pedro.
Getting amped up on Chocamine, natural legal speed
Chocamine is a stimulant. It’s the concentrated extract of cacao.
It’s mildly sensual, stupefying and very wakeful.
It’s significantly more stimulating than caffeine, it’s central substance Phenylethylamine, was also the main substance in the recent generation of dance pills, and also numerous current workout products.
You can still find those too, and they may provide even more kick than Chocamine alone as they often contain the PEA enhancing hordenine. PEA, gives a tingly strong stimulant effect without much of the euphoria of classical stimulants.
Legal High or Performance enhancing drug?
Both… In a Preliminary clinical study from 2005, a 1000mg dosage in health adults resulted in improved ability to react quickly to alternating auditory and visual commands. It even improved their ability to ignore interfering auditory commands while remaining focused on a visual task.
In 2009 a clinical study was conducted using an IMPACT Cognitive Assessment tool used by scientists in the field of neuropsychology. They tested 40 healthy volunteers and the results were impressive.
Significant improvement in test assessing short-term memory and visual-motor response speed. Up to 39% improvement after Chocamine consumption. Positive trends in tests assessing reaction time and impulse control.
It’s mildly sensual, stupefying and very wakeful. Chocamine also has mood enhancing cannabinoids and theobromine, which means that Chocamine does actually give a little mood lift as well as extra energy and performance enhancement.
Chocamine, the ultimate natural nootropic… so what’s the catch?
Have too much and it’ll make you shaky and anxious. The doses are small (like a fraction of a teaspoon) so measure carefully, start small and do your research.
Overall a useful substance, especially in a time when good legal festival pick me ups are hard to come by or you need that study drug to get you through exams without all the energy drinks and coffee.
Legal stimulants that don’t quite make the cut
Something on the milder tip, more of an every day pick me up, Maca is a fascinating super-food that seems to seem to enhance both energy and sexuality. It does so very naturally with no real altered sense of control or feeling, but this stuff does work.
Note that because of its potential influence on dopamine, I would not combine this with other stimulants. It’s very good for the gym, and also great for the bedroom, really picks up that sex drive for both of you.
Maca Root – Energy, sex and drive
- Boosts energy without inducing anxiety.
- Improves stamina, keeps you going at the gym or in the bedroom.
- With regular use, maca powder improves your mood, focus, drive and that all important motivation. Helps coming off harder drugs!
- Balances Women’s Hormones, Increases Fertility and Sexual Health. Boosts mood, decreases depression, increases sexual libido.
- Male’s Testosterone Levels and Fertility. Improves sperm production and increases volume (or load)
- Fights disease. Maca root is a natural antioxidant, boosting levels of glutathione.
Kanna – Mild stimulant that works great with cannabis, reducing anxiety
Another good general pick me up is Kanna. It’s an Africa herb with an interesting mix of mood lifting, anti-anxiety and stimulating properties. As a stimulant it’s subtle, more of a bounce in your step thing, but as a general energy and mood tonic it has good use, feels natural and has combining or enhancing effects with cannabis and alcohol where the mood lift is increased.
Betal Nut – Addictive stimulant, popular in Asia, potentially increases risk of cancer
Betel nut is worth first warning about – this substance can be addictive, like smoking. So use with strong moderation and caution. It is a herbal stimulant popular in Asia, and related to the effects of nicotine. Apparently it provides notable stimulation, euphoric and like chocamine stronger than caffeine- although I’ve no experience with it. It’s often chewed with lime and betel leaves.