Psilocybin vs. Antidepressants: The beginning of the end of chemical treatment. Science is changing and advancing rapidly and when you read the studies and analyze the data it is easy to see how microdosing magic mushrooms makes for a compelling shift in the way we treat depression and anxiety. Indeed it does appear they could replace antidepressants and much faster than we think.
We are entering a very interesting and pivotal time in how the world perceives psilocybin or “magic mushrooms.” Once viewed only as a recreational psychedelic drug, the potential for microdoses of psilocybin to replace antidepressants and to provide enduring relief for victims of emotional trauma is at the forefront of modern science.
It’s phenomenal, really. How can a drug that is illegal in nearly every country of the world, be potentialized to replace chemical drugs within as few as five years?
The Centre for Psychedelic Research at London’s Imperial College believes it is possible.
The Centre is leading one of the first trials to compare how psilocybin therapy stacks up against the most widely-used antidepressants. The trial involves a population study of 60 participants. All of the participants suffer from moderate to severe depression and will be undergoing treatment with psilocybin in conjunction with therapy sessions with a clinical psychologist. The study is a randomized, double blind, placebo controlled trial: the gold standard in research.
The participants will be randomly selected to receive either the psilocybin fungi treatment or a placebo and neither the scientists nor the participants will know who is receiving which. Data collection will follow and the effects of taking psilocybin will be compared with an antidepressant called escitalopram, the antidepressant that has the largest corner of the market.
The challenge with taking escitalopram long-term is that patients often feel their positive and negative emotions are suppressed, leaving patients feeling somewhat empty or hollow. People who receive a microdose of psilocybin as part of their therapy feel the opposite: increased connectedness, greater emotional responsiveness and a positive emotional release. Remarkably, psilocybin appears to work much faster than antidepressants, which can take months of use before a benefit is perceived by the patient.
But what about psilocybin’s side effects? One would presume that since psilocybin is illegal there must be a host of negative consequences to use, even in a controlled, medically supervised environment. Incorrect. MRIs have been used to study the brains of the participants and preliminary data suggests that there are approximately twice as many side effects for escitalopram as there are for psilocybin.
With preliminary data like this, why isn’t psilocybin treatment available through conventional health care providers already? Firstly, it is ethical and responsible to wait on evidence proving efficacy from clinical trials. Secondly, while there are some people for whom medically supervised microdosing with psilocybin will not be an option, almost everyone is a potential candidate: certainly a daunting threat to the pharmaceutical companies who formulate antidepressants.
Getting a stronghold on the antidepressant market is going to be a challenge for fungi, nonetheless. Antidepressant use has increased dramatically and the global market is anticipated to be worth just shy of $16 billion by 2023.
Recently, Denver Colorado voted to decriminalize magic mushrooms, the first city to do so in the United States, setting the stage for national and international discussions on turning against psilocybin prohibition.
The city of Oakland has recently followed suit but the chance to the local law does not create any marketplace or way to sell or distribute entheogenic plants commercially.
One way or another, views on psilocybin are changing and in turn it is being increasingly considered and validated as a natural, plant medicine.
Below is a video by Jeff, one of the team members at Neuro Growth, on quitting antidepressants.
Check out the Complete Beginners Guide To Microdosing Psilocybin Mushrooms HERE
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Also check out They Don’t Get High But They Do Get Shocking Results: What Happens When Work Day and Weekend Warriors Microdose Magic Mushrooms? Does it Help with Symtoms of Anxiety and Depression? How Magic Mushroom Microdosing My Coffee Transformed My Day