AS the Guardia Civil reminded Spanish residents that in certain parts of the country permits are required in order to sell scavenged mushrooms, scientists in London say that magic mushrooms could help depression.
A study on just 19 deeply depressed people undertaken by a team at Imperial College London discovered that psilocybin, the hallucinogenic ingredient in magic mushrooms appeared to cure depression for several weeks in more than 50 per cent of those tested.
Effectively, apart from undergoing a psychedelic experience, the results of brain scans and the response of the patients suggested that the psilocybin reset the brains of many of those taking part in the experiment.
Patients themselves compared their experience to restarting or defragging a computer and whilst this is a tiny study, the scientists believe that wider studies may well confirm these first results.
They certainly recommend that no-one should self-medicate but suspect that there will be plenty of potential volunteers to take part in future tests were both those suffering from depression and a control group of healthy people will be required.