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LSD produces 'higher' level of consciousness, Scientists claim

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Psychedelic drugs such as LSD, psilocybin, and ketamine cause the brain to enter a “higher state of consciousness,” according to scientists. 

Scans of volunteers who received LSD, ketamine or psilocybin have revealed increased random brain activity than normal while under the influence , in a new study. 

Professor Anil Seth, co-director of the Sackler Centre for Consciousness Science at Sussex University, said: “This finding shows that the brain-on-psychedelics behaves very differently from normal.  

“During the psychedelic state, the electrical activity of the brain is less predictable and less ‘integrated’ than during normal conscious wakefulness – as measured by ‘global signal diversity’. 
“Since this measure has already shown its value as a measure of ‘conscious level’, we can say that the psychedelic state appears as a higher ‘level’ of consciousness than normal – but only with respect to this specific mathematical measure.”
This new findings can lead to new treatments for people suffering from severe mental illness.

Dr Robin Carhart-Harris, of Imperial College London, said: “Rigorous research into psychedelics is gaining increasing attention, not least because of the therapeutic potential that these drugs may have when used sensibly and under medical supervision.  
“The present study's findings help us understand what happens in people’s brains when they experience an expansion of their consciousness under psychedelics. 
“People often say they experience insight under these drugs – and when this occurs in a therapeutic context, it can predict positive outcomes. 
“The present findings may help us understand how this can happen.”

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