Ayahuasca is one of the psychedelic drugs that keep on being studied because of the benefit and side effects. Charles Grob 1993 conducted the first study of the effects of ayahuasca on humans through my company the Hoasca Project. They compared indigenous youth who consumed ayahuasca sacramentally twice a month, with urban adolescents who did not use ayahuasca. The study showed that the first group scored up to 7 times lower than the other groups in substance abuse disorders, anxiety, depression, body image disorders, and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.
However, this may be due to other differences and is not a direct cause of the use of ayahuasca. In another study, this time with mice, it was observed that ayahuasca can have an antidepressant effect. Neuron activation and toxicity levels in the dorsal rapport, amygdala, and hippocampal formation nuclei were investigated. The effects found were: increased neuronal activity in serotonergic brain areas, decreased movement of female mice both in the open field and in the maze, and more activation in the forced swimming test. In other words, mice that had received ayahuasca swam much faster (we emphasize that water is very unwelcome to mice).
In a study by Dominguez Clavé et al., conducted in 2016, it was indicated that there is ample evidence that ayahuasca can be useful for treating addiction, depression, and anxiety, as well as disorders related to impulse control. and trauma. They argue that it appears to increase self-acceptance of oneself, safely exposing subjects to their own emotions. However, they add that more research is needed in this area because the results are not completely definitive.
Many other authors defend the role of ayahuasca therapy in the resolution of trauma because they indicate that the drug triggers the assimilation of experiences and the acceptance of all kinds of memories. It seems that a complex mechanism leads to the memory of traumatic memories when the individual is in a pleasant and calm subjective state so that they can be overcome.
We must indicate in conclusion that the effects of this substance are still unknown and further research is needed. It seems that ayahuasca arouses a lot of curiosity in people who want to experience new sensations, increasing tourism in places where their consumption is more widespread and legalized.