Powdered Alcohol Is Now A Legal Thing In America So Watch Out

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Well, This Sounds Dangerous: Powdered Alcohol Is Now A Thing

Tired of lugging around six-packs and bottles to and from in order to have a good time? Well, so was Mark Philips.

To fix this very common problem, Philips created Palcohol, a type of powdered alcohol. Of course, like most new drugs, it had to go through the proper process before it can be legally sold but great news for those of you who like their booze in powder version: it was legalized! 

What is powdered alcohol?

Powdered alcohol is defined by the Journal of the American Medical Association as "alcohol that has been absorbed into a carbohydrate, resulting in a dry state rather than its usual liquid form."

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The powered version of alcohol was approved in 2015 by the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau. You might have been able to find Palcohol at locations where alcohol would normally be sold and (obviously) only available to people of the legal drinking age.

The idea of powdered alcohol has been around since the 19th century and was first patented in 1877. But since its approval, it hasn't made quite the impact in the American market, and many states have banned Palcohol altogether.

To consume Palcohol, you just have to add water and then enjoy. There are four types of Palcohol, including powdered cosmopolitan, "Powderita" (their margarita option), vodka, and rum. There is also a lemon-drop flavor in the works. 

Palcohol is different than alcohol in many ways. First, it comes in a solid form. The powder is 50 percent alcohol by weight and 10 percent alcohol by volume. This makes it very hard for people to understand how much alcohol they are actually ingesting.

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Are there risks to powdered alcohol?

There are many concerns that have been raised about Palcohol.

1. Powdered alcohol is really easy to sneak into other peoples' foods and drinks without their knowledge.

2. There is a high binge-drinking potential, which, in powdered form, is hard to track how much someone has actually ingested.

3. If drinks are highly concentrated, there is a chance that a person can overconsume the powdered alcohol unintentionally.

4. There is a potential that minor usage will increase because of the ease of transport and concealment.

5. Powdered alcohol can be abused, like snorting.

6. It can be snuck into public venues (schools or public events) that do not allow alcohol consumption.

Since its approval in 2015, at least 35 states have banned the sale of Palcohol, and many others introduced legislation that regulates powdered alcohol like it's other beverage counterparts.

So, even though it's a good idea, there are too many ways powdered alcohol can be abused and overconsumed without a person realizing they have ingested too much.

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Editor's Note: This article was originally posted in March 2015 and was updated with the latest information.

Nicole Weaver is a Senior Writer at Showbiz Cheat Sheet and reports for New York Magazine and Teen Vogue. Find her on Twitter for more.