What is ibogaine? Ibogaine is a natural psychoactive substance found in the root bark of the African rain forest shrub Tabernanthe iboga. The iboga plant has been traditionally used by the Bwiti tribe in the Congo basin of Africa for healing purposes and shamanistic ritual ceremonies.
Ibogaine is now becoming a popular method to treat addiction and withdrawal symptoms. In 1962, 19-year-old Howard Lotsof, who was an addict himself, found that ibogaine reduced his dependency on heroin without any withdrawal symptoms and stopped his cravings. After that, Lotsof started campaigning for ibogaine to be used for anti-addiction treatments. As the use of ibogaine started growing, multiple studies were conducted on ibogaine, its benefits, and risks.
Iboga vs. Ibogaine:
Iboga is basically the root bark that is taken straight from the soil, grounded into a powder form, and consumed. For the purpose of treatments, iboga has to be consumed in large quantities to fully experience the journey. Since the level of chemicals varies from one iboga root to the other, it can be hard to administer the drug and control its effects. Also, iboga comes from natural sources and contains different types of chemicals. So, side effects like physical discomfort and nausea occur more often.
Ibogaine is a synthesized version of the active compound in the iboga root that causes hallucinations and the “ibogaine experience.” As ibogaine is much purer than iboga, the dosage has to be strictly customized and controlled by a medical professional to suit your needs and medical history. In ibogaine treatment centers, this drug is used to treat withdrawal symptoms as its benefits and side effects can be closely supervised to a much greater degree. However, if you’re looking for the traditional experience and are ready to undergo the hardships, you can choose iboga over ibogaine.
Many scientific studies have proven that ibogaine is effective in helping the detoxification and drug recovery process. According to the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI), ibogaine has shown significant results in “short-term stabilization of drug-dependent persons as they prepare to enter substance abuse treatment.” They also noted that “ibogaine significantly decreased craving for cocaine and heroin during inpatient detoxification. Self-reports of depressive symptoms were also significantly lower after ibogaine treatment and at 30 days after program discharge.”