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Mending Mental Health With Magic Mushrooms

Breaking the mental shackles with the aid of psilocybin


What's going on?

Scientists have proved that magic mushrooms may effectively reboot the brain, especially in areas known to play a role in depression. Several studies over the past ten years highlight the therapeutic benefits of psychedelics as they have shown promising results in treating depression and even, addiction.


A 2016 Johns Hopkins University study of 51 patients with life-threatening cancer showed high doses of psilocybin significantly reduced depression and anxiety for six months in 80% of cases, helping them to accept death. Psilocybin is the psychoactive compound found in the magic mushroom. Researchers from Imperial College London also used this compound to treat a small number of patients suffering from depression. Dr. Robin Carhart-Harris, head of psychedelic research at Imperial, suggested that psilocybin gave the patients a kick-start they needed to come out of their depressive states. Researchers found that the brain network initially disintegrates during the drug trip and reintegrates later. These findings provide new insight into what happens in the brain.


However, researchers at the Imperial College admits that the significance of their results is limited by the small sample size of 20 patients and the lack of a control group. More than 300 million people suffer from depression globally, and many severe cases do not respond to antidepressants. Psilocybin may very well be their answer, but more studies are needed to make this happen.


Psilocybin produces substantial and sustained decreases in depression and anxiety in patients with life-threatening cancer