The number of young women taking new types of drugs is increasing rapidly, a Beijing police officer said yesterday on the eve of International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking.
A policeman (not in the picture) shows middle school students poppy bulbs in Zaozhuang, Shandong province, yesterday, a day before the International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking. [Gu Zhe/China Daily]
More than half of 310 new drug takers seized by Beijing police last month were women, most younger than 30, Yi Yang, deputy director of the anti-drug department of Beijing municipal public security bureau, said at a press conference.
Last year, women accounted for 21.7 percent of 14,000 drug users caught by Beijing police.
The trend of more women drug users is related to the popularity of new types of drugs in mass binges, he said.
New types of drugs appearing in the past decade include methamphetamine and ketamine.
"They are used as a stimulant for their powerful enhancing effects on mood and energy," he said.
In the most high-profile case this year, pop star Man Wenjun and his wife Li Li reportedly treated friends with ketamine and other new drugs at Man`s birthday party last month.
"At such parties, men and women usually account for half and half. We often catch couples. It could explain why the number of new women drug users is equal that of men," Yi said.
Professor Xia Guomei from the Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences said men drug addicts may just stay at home alone and use traditional drugs such as heroin.
But new drugs such as "ice" enhance sexual ability, so some men drug takers organize group sex, in which the same number of women participate. That could also explain the increase in women drug users, she said.
A number of women take new drugs hoping to lose weight, she said, adding the practice is common in the entertainment industry.
"After taking new drugs like `ice`, people can stay awake and eat very little for days. Just like getting very sick, the drug makes them lose weight, but it also seriously damages health," she said.
Singer Zhou Yanhong said earlier that some actresses were losing weight this way.
Most of the new drugs seized in Beijing are made domestically and transported from the southwestern region of the country, according to municipal police.