People are increasingly open to psychedelic therapies. What’s driving that change?

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In 2010, David Nutt, a neuropsychopharmacologist and the former chief drugs advisor to the U.K. government, co-authored a study ranking 20 drugs by potential harms, both to individual users and wider society. The substances were assigned a score out of 100, with researchers taking into account factors such as addiction, crime, mental and physical harms, and costs to the economy, communities and the environment.  Alcohol scored the worst overall (72), while the least damaging drugs included ecstasy (9), LSD (7) and mushrooms (6). The research followed up on 2007 study where Nutt claimed that alcohol and tobacco were more harmful than many illegal drugs. A day after that paper published, he was fired from his position with the government.  More than a decade later, while psilocybin, the active ingredient in magic mushrooms, is still illegal in most countries, and alcohol remains the most widely consumed drug in the world, Nutt’s findings are less a “fireable offence” and more in line with modern schools of thought.   As voters have demonstrated recently with widespread support for drug reforms, from cannabis legalization to drug decriminalization, the perceptions of drugs and psychedelics in particular, is shifting. Earlier this week, in a virtual panel hosted by Field Trip Health, company founder Ronan Levy, medical director Dr. Michael Verbora and University of Toronto psychiatry professor Dr. Sidney Kennedy discussed some of the forces driving that shift and the new era of mental health treatment that could be on the horizon.  Forget taking a pill a day. Canada is using psychedelics to revolutionize the way we treat mental health and addiction First non-palliative Canadian has been approved for psilocybin therapy The first Canadian to legally consume psilocybin for medical purposes shares his experience Field Trip opened its Toronto clinic earlier this year. Inside, patients, draped with heavy…

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