According to a new study, taking psychedelic drugs can make people reach higher states of consciousness. With the help of brain imaging technology, researchers had a look at the effects LSD, ketamine or psilocybin (the substance found in magic mushrooms) had on volunteers. While they were measuring the magnetic fields that took place in the brain, scientists saw that the diversity of the neural signal was indeed higher on all three types of drugs.
Anil Seth, who is a co-director and Professor at the Sackler Center for Consciousness Science (University of Sussex), is the one who led the study. According to him, now we have the confirmation that while on psychedelics, the brain has a completely different behavior.
But How Exactly Is It Different?
The Professor explained that while in the psychedelic state, they noticed that the electrical activity in the brain became less predictable and less integrated, as opposed to the normal wakefulness state. They took as a mark the global signal diversity value, which shows the conscious level. As such, the psychedelic state seems to relate to a higher level of consciousness than usual, or at least this is what the numbers show.
Meanwhile, Dr. Suresh Muthukumaraswamy, who works at the University of Auckland, worked in the first stages of the study. He declared that it’s striking that the results were all the same, despite the different substances that were involved in the study. Moreover, this also means that the results are robust and can be repeated.
People are More and More Interested in This Type of Studies
Last but not least, Dr. Robin Carhart-Harris (the Department of Medicine at Imperial), declared that in the recent years there was a boost regarding thorough research of psychedelics, possibly because they have a therapeutic potential that can be exploited under medical supervision. Needless to say, people are interested to find out more about what is happening to their brain under the effect of various substances.