Another important part of this miracle drug was that it was supposedly non-addictive. It was confusing, because it seemed like any time a main character was stressed, or just wanted to have a good time, they popped one. I'm not sure about the terminology, but perhaps it was habit-forming, even though it wasn't addictive.
Even though this was the "ultimate drug," there were plenty of alternatives: kava, several stimulants including caffeine, and nitrous oxide. In Robinson's Mars, such recreational drugs were common, found in bathroom vending machines and other places of convenience.