Citation: Liberta. "Pleasant Euphoric Stimulation: An Experience with Betel Nut & Tobacco (exp100015)". Erowid.org. Jan 16, 2020. erowid.org/exp/100015
I am one of those people who often has trouble staying awake at some of the most inconvenient times. Previously, I had used only coffee as a means of keeping myself awake. This rapidly turned into a caffeine addiction, and this thoughtful stimulant would remind me if I had missed a habitual does with a debilitating migraine. It was at this time I decided to replace this harmful dependance with another stimulant. Betel nut is one such stimulant I decided to try.
(Additional background information: I am a habitual tobacco smoker, smoking around 20 pipes per day. However on the day of the experiment, I had smoked no tobacco prior to my trial of combining it with the betel nuts.)
Prior to ingesting my first dose, I was feeling physically fatigued but also some excitement and anticipation. At approximately 8:15am I took a piece of betel nut weighing 0.27g, dipped it in some lime paste and proceeded to chew it. The seed was extremely hard and felt like it would break my teeth, but I managed to crush it down into gritty pieces. I held this in my mouth for 10 minutes, which was difficult due to the salivation, before spitting it out. I immediately followed this with another piece weighing 0.18g, following the same method. Towards the end of the 10 minutes of holding the second piece, the stimulating effects began to manifest.
It began with a feeling of alertness, and a slight vibrational feeling in my chest. The effects peaked at approximately 10 minutes after spitting out the second dose and consisted of strong stimulation, moderate euphoria and a general feeling of well being. The stimulation was unlike caffeine, in that physical activity was not only effortless, but necessary. There was also none of the negative side effects of a high does of caffeine such as heart palpitations and dizziness. This lasted for around 20 minutes then started to subside. The effects lasted a total of 3.5 hours.
For my second experiment, I took 0.71g of Betel nuts, crushed them in a mortar and pestle, mixed in some lime paste and wrapped the powder in a spinach leaf (The only edible leaf I was able to find). The quid tasted horrible, but I managed to chew it for 10 minutes before spitting it out. The effects were identical to my first attempt.
In researching the effects of Betel nuts, I found a passage that stated that they can enhance the effects of other stimulants. I decided to test this with tobacco. 30 minutes after spitting out the quid (when the peak began to subside) I took a piece weighing 0.26g and ingested it in the same manner as my first attempt. A new peak began around 6 minutes after spitting it out, and at this point I weighed 0.2g of tobacco and smoked it through a pipe in one inhalation. Immediately after exhaling I began to experience waves of euphoria, reminiscent of my experiments with waiting for a moderate dose of codeine or diazapam to peak, then taking a large hit of cannabis. This lasted for about 2 minutes, then faded quickly.
I concluded from these experiments, that betel nuts are great for performance enhancement or as an incentive for physical activity as well as a general occasional recreational stimulant, but not as a coffee substitute. Betel nuts would not be well accepted as a social drug in western culture, and the risks associated with betel chewing (Oral cancers, staining of the teeth) make it a poor choice for everyday use.
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