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There is still a lot to be learned about the ancient soup before it can be widely used to treat depression.

Via Discover Magazine:

Ayahuasca has been studied in rodents and humans before, but not non-human primates. And strangely — or not-so-strangely, depending on who you ask — the drug seemed to help the monkeys’ depression.

Its use dates back hundreds of years among Amazonian tribes, and according to one study, regular ayahuasca users “performed better in neuropsychological tests, scored higher in spirituality and showed better psychosocial adaptation.”

Ayahuasca has been shown to be generally safe and non-addictive, illuminating well-being with fast-acting anti-depressive effects in just one dose.

Researchers are looking to classic psychedelics — including ketamine and psilocybin— to see if they hold greater promise. And with the case of the marmosets, ayahuasca did rapidly reduce depression symptoms.

Within 24 hours, the monkeys’ began to eat more, they stopped scratching excessively, and later, their weight returned to baseline levels. 

Hit the jump to learn more about ayahuasca’s history and modern uses.

Trippy: Scientists Gave Depressed Monkeys Ayahuasca And It Helped  was originally published on globalgrind.com

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