But Fadiman and others who I have spoken to about microdosing say that, like anything else that's self-administered, there are potential pitfalls. Reply All's PJ Vogt took too much acid on a recent experiment for the podcast, got too high, and decided to never microdose again.Fadiman said he's gotten about 5 reports from people who very much did not enjoy their experience. Others say they feel good when they microdose, then go back to being depressed or anxious in the weeks after they stop a cycle. Still others take LSD too often and build up a bit of a tolerance.
"I am the least-known microdosing researcher in the world and I am the most famous microdosing researcher in the world."
"The scientific basis is pretty shaky right now," Matthew Johnson, a researcher at Johns Hopkins University who studies psilocybin and other hallucinogens, told me. "Its benefits are plausible and very interesting, but the claims of 'everything fits together and goes right and you're in a good mood and in the flow,' well, we all have those types of days regardless of any pharmacological intervention."
"I absolutely think it's time for a scientific study with appropriate controls, a true placebo, and a look at—if there is indeed an effect, how unique is it?"
But the field reports have been so promising lately that Fadiman believes it's time to move to the next step. He says a team of researchers at a university in the United States and a team in the Netherlands are both trying to perform studies in the next couple years, though he wouldn't name them because there are still regulatory obstacles before either study gets started.Even experienced microdosers say they'd like to see the scientific evidence to help support what they've been feeling. Martijn Schirp, a regular microdoser and founder of the drug news website High Existence (which has several good primers on microdosing), says there's still a stigma around hallucinogenic drugs even if you're just taking a tiny bit of them.
"Microdosing, if you do it correctly, it will help you"