Party pills  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

Party pills, also known as "herbal highs", "pep pills" "dance pills" and "natural power", is a colloquialism for a type of recreational drug whose main ingredient was originally benzylpiperazine (BZP), but has now expanded to a wide range of compounds with a variety of effects. BZP is banned in a few countries, including the USA, Australia and New Zealand, but is available on a more or less restricted basis in many jurisdictions. A range of other piperazine derivatives have also been sold as ingredients in party pills, and many of these branded "proprietary blends" have subsequently been sold in countries around the world. Piperazine derivatives sold in this way include BZP, TFMPP, MeOPP, pFPP and several others. mCPP has rarely been sold as a party pill ingredient due to its tendency to cause migraine headaches. These piperazines are usually mixed with other ingredients such as caffeine, 5-HTP and a range of vitamins, minerals, amino acids and binders to make party pills.

In countries such as New Zealand where BZP and related piperazines have been recently made illegal, there is now increasing commercial interest in piperazine free "party pills" which are purported to produce similar effects with ingredients that will circumvent the ban. Common active ingredients (among many others) include caffeine, theobromine, other stimulant alkaloids, octopamine (a chemical which acts as a neurotransmitter with similar effects to dopamine), blue lotus extract (Nymphaea caerulea), natural sources of the LSD precursor and weak psychedelic agent lysergic acid amide (illegal in many countries), passionflower (sedative which contains monoamine oxidase inhibitors), Citrus aurantium (contains small amounts of the stimulant synephrine), glaucine (plant derived compound usually used as cough medicine), and geranamine (alkylamine compound found in geranium oil).

Some ingredients are not revealed by some manufacturers, and some products have been released containing compounds such as methylone, BK-MBDB and Diphenyl prolinol before being subsequently withdrawn following threats of legal action from the government.

Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Party pills" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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