The 44-year-old DJ finished the Los Angeles Marathon last weekend in 3 hours and 35 minutes, he said recently on social media. In a video recap, Diplo showed himself adding several drops of LSD into his water bottle for the race.
“I think you need like, four drops of LSD,” Diplo said, before adding one more. “Five.”
It’s difficult to say how large or small of a dose he took – there’s no “generally-accepted standard” for how concentrated liquid LSD should be, notes Greg Fonzo, co-director of the Center for Psychedelic Research and Therapy at University of Texas at Austin.
And not only is it impossible to speculate how much Diplo took, Fonzo adds that it is “not clear what his motivation was for taking LSD prior to running a marathon” because there’s “currently no rigorous or substantial evidence to suggest that LSD or psychedelic ingestion might enhance physical or athletic performance.”
What does LSD do?
Experts warn that without proper education and guidance from a medical professional, use of the psychedelic is risky.
Experiences vary depending on the amount of LSD ingested – lower doses have been found to boost mood, sensory perception and energy, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse.
But negative short term effects, per the institute, can include include increased blood pressure, heart rate and body temperature, as well as dizziness, sleeplessness, weakness and rapid emotional shifts – not ideal athletic circumstances.
There are also certain people who are at-risk for a negative experience, even with the proper setting and dosage. Dr. Alex Dimitriu, who specializes in psychiatry and sleep medicine, previously told USA TODAY that anyone with any personal or family history of schizophrenia should steer clear of these substances.
And, it’s worth noting, the use of psychedelic drugs, even in medical settings, is illegal in the United States except in Oregon, which legalized psychedelic mushrooms in 2020.
The connection between athletes and LSD
There isn’t notable research to back up any physical boosts Diplo might have gained from taking LSD, though some top athletes in the last few years have begun utilizing psychedelics for mental health purposes, which experts have noted can help with better focusing on their performance.
Former NBA star Lamar Odom, four-time NFL MVP Aaron Rodgers and NFL alum Kenny Stills are some of the most famous professional athletes who have spoken publicly about their use of psychedelics for mental health and substance abuse purposes.
Some medical experts, citing clinical research, say there can be legitimate benefits to using psychedelic drugs in the proper quantities and in safe settings. But they also warn following the latest buzzed-about celebrity medical trend can dangerous.
“When people are stuck or suffering, well-guided change can be beneficial, and psychedelics are agents that encourage such transformative experiences,” says Dimitriu, who does not use psychedelic treatments with his patients because the treatments are illegal.
He added psychedelics can encourage users to “connect loose themes” and experience “improved lucidity and memory.” But that does not mean they are for everyone or should be used recreationally.
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Contributing: Jenna Ryu