Native Americans have been using the peyote cactus for ritual religious and medicinal purposes for a long time. But its psychoactive alkaloids, particularly mescaline, have led drug users to use and abuse the peyote as a recreational drug.
It may seem like a doomed attempt to mix business and pleasure. But a growing number of young professionals in Silicon Valley insist that taking small doses of psychedelic drugs simply makes them perform better at work – becoming more creative and focused. The practice, known as "microdosing", involves taking minute quantities of drugs such as LSD, psilocybin (magic mushrooms) or mescaline (found in the Peyote cactus) every few days.
Mescaline or 3,4,5-trimethoxyphenethylamine is a naturally occurring psychedelic alkaloid of the phenethylamine class, known for its mind-altering effects similar to those of LSD and psilocybin. It occurs naturally in the peyote cactus (Lophophora williamsii), the San Pedro cactus (Echinopsis pachanoi) and in the Peruvian torch (Echinopsis peruviana), and as well in a number of other members of the Cactaceae plant family.