On November 18th, a new study was published in Nature: Scientific Reports revealed that adults who microdose psychedelics may experience decreased levels of anxiety and depression.
The study was conducted internationally by UBC Okanagan researchers and was the largest study of psychedelic micro-dosing published to date.
Microdosing has increased in popularity over the past decade and involves taking minimal doses of psychedelics– so small that they will not affect any cognitive function.
Joseph Rootman, a UBCO doctoral student and the lead author, discussed how those who micro-dosed displayed lower levels of anxiety, depression, and stress across the board than non-microdosers.
“In total, we followed more than eight thousand and five hundred people from seventy-five countries using an anonymous self-reporting system.
About half were following a microdosing regiment and half were not,” Rootman said, “In comparing microdosers and non-microdosers, there was a clear association between microdosing and fewer symptoms of depression, anxiety and stress– which is important given the high prevalence of these conditions and the substantial suffering they cause.”
Eighty-five percent of participants opted to micro-dose psilocybin, the naturally-occurring psychedelic found in mushrooms. This finding differs from earlier published studies, where the majority of participants reported microdosing LSD.
Prior to the study, potential participants were sourced online and submitted questionnaires that included demographic information, psychedelic usage, and mental health history.
Throughout the study, participants reported their weekly psychedelic usage and mental health responses in order to be analyzed. The majority of participants reported microdosing between one and four times per week.