Is Phenibut Legal?

Phenibut legal status

Is phenibut legal?

As with many nootropics, the legality of phenibut is an issue that often leaves people confused, leading many to ask is phenibut legal? The most important thing to understand is that phenibut is currently (as of January 2017) a non-controlled substance in the United States, meaning it is legal to possess, purchase and sell without any sort of license or prescription.
However, special care must be taken not to violate the FDA’s codes concerning its labeling and marketing. Phenibut, while uncontrolled, is not a dietary supplement since it is not a dietary component of any food products and it can’t be labeled or marketed as such. Care must also be taken not to make claims asserting that it can be used to treat, prevent, or cure any illness or condition.

The DHSEA and Nootropics

What is the DHSEA? The dietary health and supplement education act of 1994 outlines and describes much of the legality and related issues for the supplement industry. It defines and outlines what can be considered a dietary supplement, what can be marketed as one, and what can not. According to the DHSEA, a dietary supplement is defined as

A product “intended to supplement the diet that bears or contains one or more of the following dietary ingredients: a vitamin, a mineral, an herb or other botanical, an amino acid, a dietary substance for use by man to supplement the diet by increasing the total dietary intake, or a concentrate, metabolite, constituent, extract, or combination of any of the aforementioned ingredients.” [1]

By that definition a product like CDP choline could be considered a supplement, where a product like phenibut couldn’t be.

Phenibut is legal, so what does that mean?

Phenibut is legal, but that doesn’t mean it shouldn’t be treated with respect and caution. Tolerance and mild withdrawal symptoms have been reported by users. The best way to avoid these, along with any possible side effects is to use the products under the supervision of a licensed medical professional, and to keep dosing consistent and regular.