Aussie Start-Up Launches ‘Anti-Energy’ Drink

Aussie Start-Up Launches ‘Anti-Energy’ Drink

Koala Karma is a “relaxation beverage” billed as the antitheses of energy drinks like V and Red Bull. In place of caffeine, guarana and other alertness-boosting ingredients, the drink comes with a chilled-out mix of passionflower, hops, chamomile, tryptophan, valerian and magnesium citrate.

“Koala Karma combines the benefits of a great tasting carbonated drink with achieving a lasting effect of a calm mind and relaxed body,” the company website claims. “When developing our relaxation drink, we combined four popular botanical herbs known for their calming properties. The unique herbal combination, coupled with essential amino acid tryptophan and popular mineral Magnesium are key ingredients to the products effectiveness.”

Apart from a breakdown of the aforementioned herbs, the Koala Karma website is currently bereft of ingredients or nutritional information, which is rarely a good sign. We’re particularly interested to see how much sugar (if any) is in each can. A tiny disclaimer warns that the drink isn’t suitable for children, or for pregnant or lactating women. Hmm.

We’ll keep an eye out for these things and report back with a Lifehacker Taste Test, coming soon. In the meantime, you can find out more about the beverage at the Koala Karma website.


  • Passionflower has been banned in America as an over the counter suppliment.

    From a monograph on it:

    Passionflower is LIKELY SAFE for most people when taken by mouth in amounts normally found in food. It is POSSIBLY SAFE when taken short-term (less than one month) as medicine. It is POSSIBLY UNSAFE when taken by mouth in large amounts.

    Passionflower can cause some side effects such as dizziness, confusion, irregular muscle action and coordination, altered consciousness, and inflamed blood vessels. There has also been a report of nausea, vomiting, drowsiness, a rapid heart rate, and abnormal heart rhythm in one person who took it.

    Special Precautions & Warnings:
    Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Don’t take passionflower if you are pregnant. It is UNSAFE. There are some chemicals in passionflower that might cause the uterus to contract.

    Not enough is known about the safety of taking passionflower during breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and don’t use it.

    • Where did you hear that passion flower has been banned in America? There are lots of different species and I find it hard to believe that they would place a ban on all of them. It’s pretty harmless and is available in teas and herbal supplements. A lot safer than something like caffeine or guarana, which is available in everything. I’ve never heard of it being banned.

      • I doubt it’s “safer”, just that no one has bothered to foot the bill for the very expensive tests (large scale double blind trials etc) required to prove such a thing… because it’s so inherently useless, like most herbal crap.

          • Completely different thing there. Most modern medicine is made from the compounds in herbs and various other sources that actually show a positive result. Those are isolated, refined and extensively tested over years, first in small trials on things like cell cultures, then on animals that are good analogues of humans in terms of the conditions it’s meant to treat, then several layers of different types of human trials. This is massively expensive and takes years.

            What you have with most herbal crap are claims based on tradition, anecdotes, religion, or most of the time straight out cons. And even when there IS an effect it’s usually either tiny because the compounds have not been isolated or delivered in the most effective form, or it’s dangerous for the same reasons- you’re not able to properly control or deliver the dose in a properly safe way for most people.

            So yes, 100% crap

            And even worse than that- because they are not sold through the same channels as conventional medicine they are not subjected to the same regulatory channels as conventional medicine so herbal crap is either an ineffective con or a dangerous poison. Take your chances and hope it’s just another useless con.

  • Sounds a lot like the “ESC” (Calm in a can) drink that recently disappeared.
    It has the similar ingredients, sans hops & magnesium.
    [If its the same beverage, manufactured by ‘Innovative Beverage co’ in Melbourne, then it may contain artificial sweetener 960, and 12g of sugar / 300ml.]

    • Yeah that’s what I was thinking, pretty much exactly the same as ESC, which has been around for years, fail to see why this is news at all.

  • A tiny disclaimer warns that the drink isn’t suitable for children, or for pregnant or lactating women. Hmm.

    That’s pretty much on everything these days though…

    • Frankly, you’d be wise to put that label on your bottled distilled water just in case someone tries to sue you for negligence or something…

  • I recall seeing a drink like this last year around the place, it didn’t sell well and the local shops stopped stocking it.

    It kind of made me sleepy, but that could also of been because I was drinking it in place of an energy drink.

    • Or it could be that you were tired – that’s why you were drinking the energy drinks in the first place, right ?

      • well yes, that’s what I’m meaning. Instead of having something to wake me up, I was having something else, that wouldn’t wake me up.

  • Magazine citrate is an excellent osmotic laxative, even in small doses. Not very calming.

  • “Koala Karma combines the benefits of a great tasting carbonated drink with achieving a lasting effect of a calm mind and relaxed body,” almost like beer

  • Ya, a host of alcohol products and other freely available substances will have this effect for real… unlike the bullshit claims on this crap.

Show more comments

Comments are closed.

Log in to comment on this story!