Red Table Talk is known for having difficult and often taboo conversations. Jada Pinkett Smith, Willow Smith and Adrienne “Gammy” Banfield-Norris often delve into these discussions, and on this week’s episode, Jada, Gammy and guest host Jaden Smith explore the underground world of psychedelics and their potential health benefits (as well as risks) with Harvard professor and best-selling author Michael Pollen.
Shadow and Act has an exclusive clip from the episode.
On “The Miracle Treatment We Almost Couldn’t Tell You About,” Jaden shines light on magic mushrooms. These psychedelics have received a new branding package thanks to their wide use and therapeutic advantage for treating mental health. Once done in secrecy with the label of dangerous, it is now a widely accepted medicinal practice underground that is making its rounds to mainstream usage. Top physicians refer to mushrooms as a “miracle treatment for mental health.”
Jada reveals how natural plant/herbal medicine assisted her in beating debilitating depression. Bob Parsons, founder of GoDaddy, also takes part in the conversation sharing his helped her overcome debilitating depression, “life changing” journey with psychedelics. Investigative journalist Lisa Ling and her husband, oncologist Paul Song, join the conversation as well, telling how this once forbidden practice helped their marriage.
“Michael I wonder what measures are being taken to include the African American community in these studies,” Gammy asks, referring to the potential lack of representation in the sample size for these studies.
“Such a great question,” responds Pollan. “Look, the psychedelic world in the United States has been very white.”
Gammy agrees with Pollan as he begins to elaborate on the studies and lack of Black people included.
“And indeed, in some of the studies, there have not been enough Black subjects to draw conclusions, and we have to fix that. I’ve been often asked why do African Americans– are they less likely to use psychedelics?” Pollan continues. “And one of the answers that I’ve come up with, and you can tell me if this sounds right, is that to use a psychedelic is to put down your defenses, and you need to feel very safe in your body.”
He continues, “There are a lot of African Americans who live in dangerous places. Who can’t let down their guard to have a day spent with a psychedelic, so you have to create an environment where people feel safe.”
To catch this episode of Red Table Talk, tune in to Facebook Watch on Nov. 10 at 9 a.m. PT/ 12 p.m. ET.
Check out the exclusive clip below: