Why The Viral TikTok Trend Of Dipping Fruit In Pre-Workout Is So Concerning

First, it was dry scooping; now it's dry dipping. The new "fitness" craze to take over where dry scooping has left off is to dip fruit such as watermelon in pre-workout powder. As far as texture, this trend is clearly a bit easier to swallow, as the fruits provide a bit more moisture than a plain scoop of dry powder. One TikToker called taetjhi describes it as "the only way to take pre in the summer" (via TikTok).

Many commenters like the idea, with viewer Xaratorax reminding watchers, "Watermelon is like 97% water guys" and watcher Angel Rizo commenting, "Got my lips itchy, but tastes good af." Other commenters referenced the previous trend of "dry scooping," which consisted of just eating pre-workout powders without liquid. That came with the risk of choking or aspiration (getting the powder into the lungs) and led to hospitalizations when a dry scooper reportedly had a heart attack and another experienced brain swelling (via Self). Clearly, the fruit adds moisture, but registered dietitian and certified strength and conditioning specialist Albert Matheny explained to Shape, "Any time you're ingesting powder, you could choke on it. It's meant to be mixed in water."

Pre-workout ingredients are highly concentrated and not intended for consumption in this state. Manufacturers ask users to dilute these powders with liquid for a reason. One of those reasons is caffeine, a common ingredient in workout powders. Complications from consuming excessive or undiluted caffeine can include jitters and heart issues.

Pre-workout powders may have hidden risks

Choking and excess caffeine consumption aren't the only dangers of consuming pre-workout powders improperly. Many of the substances they contain are both unknown and unregulated. A 2019 study published in Nutrients analyzed 100 popular pre-workout powders and determined that 44% "of all ingredients were included as part of a proprietary blend with undisclosed amounts of each ingredient" (via Shape). This comes on top of Amazon acknowledging that there have been many fake supplements sold on their platform (via Wired). Moreover, the FDA does not regulate such substances for safety in the same manner that it does food and standard drugs (via FDA).

Even if pre-workout supplements are taken as directed, some people will experience side effects. These include mild reactions to the common ingredients beta alanine and niacin, such as a tingling sensation or skin discoloration; stomach upset related to ingredients like bicarbonate, magnesium, and creatine, and laxative effects from extra magnesium (via Healthline).

Considering all of these unknowns and the fact that dipping or scooping these powders doesn't allow you to consume doses as directed, it's no surprise there could be significant health complications. While there are many safe and healthy pre-workout routines that include food and supplements, experts advise that it's better to skip dipping your fruit in pre-workout powder.