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Psychedelic Microdosers Report Health and Wellness Motivations

Among adults citing mental health concerns, those who microdose psychedelic substances report less depression, anxiety, and stress

MONDAY, Nov. 29, 2021 (HealthDay News) — Microdosers who use psychedelic substances at sub-sensorium microdoses report being motivated by health and wellness interests, according to a study published online Nov. 18 in Scientific Reports.

Noting that microdosing has gained interest for reported positive effects on wellness and cognition, Joseph M. Rootman, from the University of British Columbia in Kelowna, Canada, and colleagues describe microdosing practices, motivations, and mental health among a sample of 4,050 self-selected microdosers and 4,653 nonmicrodosers via a mobile application.

The most commonly used microdose substance in the sample was psilocybin (85 percent). The researchers found that microdosers were more likely to report a history of mental health concerns, but were generally similar to nonmicrodosing controls with respect to demographics. Among participants reporting mental health concerns, lower levels of depression, anxiety, and stress were exhibited for microdosers across genders. In general, the most prominent motives across microdosers were related to health and wellness; these were more prominent among women and those who reported mental health concerns.

“These findings highlight adults who are microdosing to treat their mental health conditions and enhance their well-being — rather than simply to get high,” a coauthor said in a statement. “We have an epidemic of mental health problems, with existing treatments that don’t work for everyone. We need to follow the lead of patients who are taking these initiatives to improve their well-being and reduce suffering.”

Several authors disclosed financial ties to companies developing psychedelic medicines; one author is an applicant on pending patents combining psilocybin mushrooms, Lions Mane mushrooms, and niacin.

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