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  • Writer's pictureMartin Polanco

Microdosing: A Look into the Growing Trend

Originally posted February 2, 2017

According to Albert Hoffman, the infamous scientist who first synthesized LSD, taking the substance in small amounts was something that clarified his thinking. Apparently, the father of this psychedelic substance isn’t the only one who has had similar results.

Microdosing, ingesting small amounts of LSD or psilocybin every few days, is something that’s become all the rage in places like Silicon Valley. By doing this, they say their focus and productivity is drastically increased.

For those who have taken up microdosing, they compare it to many other “natural” techniques that are used to improve job performance and concentration. Many who want the effects of Adderall and Ritalin but don’t want to take a synthetic prescription medication have turned to microdosing as an alternative.

While there have been few clinical studies on microdosing, there are those who have done the some research. David Nutt, a researcher of psychedelics and director of the Center for Neuropsychopharmacology at Imperial College London, has found remarkable results while performing primary trials on microdosing. Nutt believes that microdosing “may help certain brain areas work in more flexible and expansive ways that might give better outcomes (”

Those who are incorporating microdosing as a part of their regular routine claim to have these supposably remarkable results. And while there are no clinical studies currently underway, there is a large body of volunteer participants who have been self-medicating since 2010. This self-led study is one conducted by Dr. James Fadiman, who has been researching psychedelics since the 1960s. He has data collected from 125 volunteers already, and results couldn’t be more promising.

According to one person who took place in the study, microdosing small amounts of psilocybin helped her to “think more creatively and stay focused.” She continues, “I manage my stress with ease and am able to keep my perspective healthy in a way that I wasn’t able to before.” Microdosing has many people offering similar claims, so much so that it is one of the fastest rising trends among young professionals in Silicon Valley. There is a Reddit forum devoted to microdosing that started in 2015 with 1,600 people subscribed to it. By June of 2016, there were some 7,500 participants. Microdosing is something that has caught people’s attention…and the popularity continues to grow.

For the countless people that make a living from using their brain, increased focus and concentration are two things that are welcomed with open arms. Where legal nootropics and other “smart drugs” becoming increasingly popular all the time, microdosing just adds another option for people looking to enhance their mental performance.

Silicon Valley isn’t the only place where people are making use of the microdosing trend. It’s actually becoming more and more popular all around the world. One 34-year-old who has been microdosing on LSD since October 2015 says it helps him stay focused. He purchases tabs of LSD off the internet and divides them into ten small doses. He takes one dose a day, in the morning, and to get the intended results. He says microdosing “gets your brain out of its regular grooves and helps you snap out of unproductive trains of thought.” For those who want to use their brain to its highest capacity, microdosing offers them a new avenue.

As with any psychedelic substance, any form of LSD is illegal in the USA. Those who take up this self-medicating trend do it at their own risk. However, often new waves of science come with risk, and those on the forefront are willing to roll the dice. But without further studies conducted on LSD by the FDA, or with government approval, the likelihood of microdosing finding its place in legal modern medicine seems like a distant dream.

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