Ma huang and ephedrine: ma huang is one of the earliest recognized naturally-occurring stimulant, comes from a leafless, desert shrub known as the horsetail plant, the main active ingredient is ephedrine. It can be diverted into methamphetamine in large quantities. Khat and cathinone: khat comes from the catha edulis plant, and early use was in the form of a beverage called. Sold as "bath salts" under names like zoom, cloud nine, or vanilla sky: referred to as new psychoactive substances (npss, best known synthetic cathinones are mephedrone and mdpv, causes the release and blocks reuptake of serotonin and dopamine. Coca and cocaine: there is evidence of coca use very far back. It wasn"t popular in europe at first, but once cocaine was isolated, it became an important substance: discovered by albert niemann. In the late 1800s, there were many elixirs, tonics powders, and pills with cocaine in them: cocaine wine - vin mariani.