London, England (TFC) – Psychedelic science continues its redemptive march out of obscurity, and stigma. Decades of misinformation and propaganda are crumbling in a free fall accelerated by cannabis reforms. It’s a revolution conjuring up uses for psychedelics ignored since the days of 1960’s counter-culture. Among those benefits, researchers now say, is an uncanny ability to remedy the chains addiction.
The findings hail from a study done by numerous United Kingdom-based researchers. Unlike many, this study noted the “thousands of years” of historical use of psychedelics by indigenous cultures. It’s a facet sometimes referenced, but rarely held with any real credibility or esteem. Rather, such native knowledge is left to languish well beyond the margins of academia. The UK study also acknowledged the role in which legislation has played in stunting psychedelic inquiry.
“Yet, due to their legal status, there has been limited scientific research into the therapeutic potential of these compounds for psychiatric disorders. In the absence of other effective treatments, however, researchers have begun again to systematically investigate such compounds and there is now evidence pointing to the use of psychedelic drugs in the treatment of addiction.”
Researchers utilized a variety of psychedelics, focusing on those used by indigenous peoples. Amazonian Ayahuasca, African ibogaine, and psilocybin mushrooms–boasting millennia of use–were conscripted alongside more familiar LSD. Several highlights were garnered by the end of the analysis.
- Magic mushroom associated psilocybin “may reduce alcohol and tobacco use in addicted samples.”
- Several observational studies point to ibogaine and Ayahuasca as effective treatments for addicts in general.
- “Ketamine has been used to treat alcohol dependence and reduces cocaine self-administration in the human laboratory.”
- “Psychedelic drugs may have their therapeutic qualities due to anti-depressant effects, stimulating neuroplasticity and long-term psychological changes.”
Another study conducted in Norway looked specifically at LSD, compiling a meta-analysis of hundreds of studies. “Assessments of lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) in the treatment of alcoholism”, its abstract read, “have not been based on quantitative meta-analysis.”
That made this one unique, unprecedented even, adding “umph” to its bold proclamations. “A single dose of LSD, in the context of various alcoholism treatment programs, is associated with a decrease in alcohol misuse.”
“It’s a generally acknowledged fact in spiritual development that ego reduction makes the influx of God’s grace possible. If, therefore, under LSD we can have a temporary reduction, so that we can better see what we are and where we are going — well, that might be of some help. The goal might become clearer. So I consider LSD to be of some value to some people, and practically no damage to anyone.” — founder of Alcoholics Anonymous Bill Wilson
This research, despite mushrooming in Europe, is often stonewalled in America. It’s a double-edged blade, with self-established societal stigma on one side, and federal entities like the DEA on the other.
Although many overlook this, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) is a heavyweight arbiter in drug studies. Researchers often must petition the government, and DEA, before their projects are even considered. In the case of Dr. Rick Strassman’s DMT study in the 1990s, the source for the drugs was also the agency. Even when the study is as press friendly as ‘veterans relieving PTSD’, research proposals are still very hit or miss. Regardless, scientific curiosity augmented by activist efforts are pushing through those barriers.