Ah, TikTok. It’s a part of the Internet we might never fully understand. Just a few years ago the social media app was relatively unknown, you’d be more inclined to think of Gwen Stefani’s “What You Waiting For” than an app designed for sharing the latest viral crazes. But since the global pandemic forced us all into lockdown and removed international travel from our horizons, scrolling through the countless videos uploaded to the platform has become not just second nature, but a source of entertainment we’ve come to rely on. Strangely though, aside from the dances that emerge on TikTok, it’s become clear that those on the app have a penchant for drinking liquids. From protein frappes made from McDonald’s ice coffee to liquid chlorophyll, TikTokers are obsessed with drinking the latest liquid sensation. For one TikTok star though, things took a turn when he decided to drink eight scoops of pre-workout.
The 25-year-old TikTok star, referred to as ‘JA’, ended up being hospitalised and “presented to an emergency room unconscious” after his brain began to swell up against his skull from internal bleeding. As Bernard Hsu – a YouTuber who posts videos on real hospital cases – explained in a video, it all stemmed from JA trying to “dry scoop” the pre-workout directly into his mouth so it would “hit harder.”
“Clearly, this was nonsense intended to sensationalise an unnecessary class of supplement, but JA was determined,” explained Hsu. “He was going to dry-scoop pre0workout for a video to post, and get 100,000 followers.”
Surprisingly, JA was hospitalised without even making it to the eight scoops. He first dry-scooped two scoops, then went and doubled it with four scoops at which point he had “instant regret.” “He thought it would be funny for the video to just chase it down with four more scoops already mixed in with water as he washed everything down and got ready for his workout.”
We’d like to think we don’t need to preface this piece with a ‘don’t try this at home’ message. After all, anyone who has taken pre-workout (at the recommend dose) knows just what a kick you achieve from it. The supplement is loaded with caffeine, creatine and other blended ingredients to provide additional focus during a workout, exceed the dose though and things can have a serious affect on your health. As Hsu explains, “The combination of huge amounts of caffeine and beta phenylethylamine in eight scoops of pre-workout swallowed at once, with heavy lifting, all together could have increased JA’s blood pressure so high that it caused his brain to start to stroke in the form of a bleed.”
Thankfully, doctors were able to treat JA to prevent further pressure from his brain against his skull and his condition is believed to have improved.