First-of-a-Kind Study Identifies Benefits of Group Psychedelic-Assisted Therapy Sessions

April 22, 2021 13:05:42

Psychedelics have become a popular topic of conversation, as well as of indulgence. While most of these substances remain outlawed in many countries across the globe, this has apparently not stopped people from accessing or using them.

One of the reported common ways of consuming these drugs is in groups. Until recently, however, there hasn’t been any data to measure the possible value an individual derived from a group psychedelic experience. That has now changed. A new study that was published recently has found that using psychedelics within group settings (retreats or religious ceremonies, for example), could trigger increases in social connectedness and positive well-being, as well as additional improvements to an individual’s mental health.

This study was led by doctoral student Hannes Kettner and was carried out by a group of researchers from the Imperial College London. The study recruited 886 participants in total who were required to take part in a guided group ceremony or experience that involved the voluntary consumption of one psychedelic substance, such as psilocybin or ayahuasca. Participants were also asked to fill out a number of virtual/online surveys, including a survey one to two weeks before their psychedelic experience; a second survey taken a couple of hours prior to the ceremony; the third survey on the day following the experience, and subsequent surveys one day and one month later.

Kettner revealed that in many self-selected studies on psychedelics, there existed a notable sampling bias, specifically toward subjects who were in their mid-20s and who had vast psychedelic experiences. He was surprised to observe that 40% of study participants signed up as people who were using psychedelics for the very first time, with the average age being 44.

This, he said, brings to mind the Michael Pollan effect, observing more individuals from differing social demographics picking interest in psychedelics, yet they did not necessarily want to access those substances by their own selves.

The study’s findings demonstrate that the effect of social settings when consuming psychedelics doesn’t just benefit an individual while on the psychedelic journey but can also bring about benefits that remain long after the experience.

Before the psychedelic ceremony, study subjects were asked to what extent they felt comfortable with the specific guides scheduled to be involved. This, Kettner stated, was one of the most reliable predictors of what kind of psychedelic experience came to pass for different individuals. He added that that while it was difficult to deduce direct comparisons between group and individual settings based on existing science, the researchers observed improvements in social connectedness as well as in participants’ well-being psychologically, which was similar to what had been observed in individual experiences.

As more becomes known about the therapeutic potential of psychedelics, many companies such as Pure Extracts Technologies Corp. (CSE: PULL) (OTC: PRXTF) are investing in growing their capacity to rapidly meet the demand for commercial-scale medicines made from these substances.

NOTE TO INVESTORS: The latest news and updates relating to Pure Extracts Technologies Corp. (CSE: PULL) (OTC: PRXTF) are available in the company’s newsroom at

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