Cocaine: Coca vs. Cocoa?

Chris Finney CFINNEY at UVMVM.BITNET
Sat Dec 26 10:57:22 EST 1992


>>And now for something completely different;  Cocaine!
>>
>>       I don't work in this area, so I figured a note to the net would be the
>>easiest way to get an easy answer on this question raised by  recent
>>discussions with a friend who is begrudgingly recovering from cocaine
>>adiction.
>>
>>What species is cocaine made from and what is the relationship of this plant
>>to the plant that chocolate is made from?

>Cocaine comes from coca (Erythroxylon coca) and chocolate comes from cacao
>(Theobroma cacao).

Another tidbit for you:

Cacao contains alkaloids of the xanthine family:
      -caffeine       (CNS stimulant)
      -theobromine    (cardiac stimulant)
      -theophylline   (vasodialator)

These are the only known alkaloids in the xanthine family and cocaine is
not one of them.

I would very much recommend the following book for your friend:

''Cacahuatl Eater:  Ruminations of an Unabashed Chocolate Addict''
  By Jonathan Ott

This book is out of print, so please leet me know if your library
hasn't got it and I can tell you where you can get a copy.

                    -Chris Finney, TECH I
                     University of Vermont



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