As the legislation around psilocybin is likely to ease over the next few years, we take a look at exactly what this psychedelic is.
In this article we talk about psilocybin a natural & innovative compound that may be the key to curing people of addiction, depression and many other mental health symptoms, we believe that psilocybin will probably be legalized in the United States. States, Canada and Europe within the next ten years (psilocybin truffles are already legal in the Netherlands).
What is psilocybin?
Psilocybin is a natural psychedelic compound produced by a number of different species of fungi.
in Europe , we find Psilocybin in the mushrooms below:
- Copelandia cyanescens (or Panaeolus cyanescens) (rare)
- Inocybe aeruginascens
- Inocybe corydalina
- Inocybe haemacta
- Panaeolina foenisecii
- Panaeolus azurescens
- Panaeolus fimicola (rare)
- Panaeolus sphinctrinus
- Panaeolus subbalteatus
- Pluteus salicinus
- Psilocybe cubensis (or Stropharia cubensis)
- Psilocybe cyanescens
- Psilocybe semilanceata (known as psilo)
- Psilocybe strictipes
What does psychedelic mean?
psychedelic means it has the ability to alter human consciousness when consumed, as it mimics the behavior of existing neurotransmitters in the brain to a high level.
Other natural and artificial psychedelics?
other natural psychedelics include iboga , mescaline and, of course, cannabis . There are also artificially produced psychedelics, the best known of which is LSD and its derivatives .
Who discovered Psylocibin?
In 1959, Swiss chemist Albert Hoffman first isolated psilocybin from mushrooms of the species Psilocybe mexicana .
Hoffman's employer, Sandoz, began bottling and selling psilocybin to physicians and clinicians around the world for use in psychedelic psychotherapy .
That was until about the late 1960s, when the law began to get tougher on psilocybin and other psychedelics, and promising research into its therapeutic benefits was largely dampened by the advent of the "war against drugs" .
This is unfortunate, because psilocybin , along with other naturally occurring psychedelics, has been used since prehistoric times in various spiritual ceremonies, a practice now at odds with the views of conservative late 20th century America, which is largely party responsible for the worldwide restriction of psychedelics.
Over the following decades, home mushroom cultivation spread around the world despite legal restrictions.
People on the fringes of society - and no doubt a number of quiet medical researchers - continue to quietly experiment with the psychoactive properties of psilocybin.
In 2000 , the respected Johns Hopkins University in the United States began a series of now famous studies on psilocybin, and the compound began to slowly return to the mainstream, fueled by renewed interest in the work of researchers psychedelics such as Terence McKenna and mycologist Paul Stamets .
By 2011 , social media, online psychedelic discussion forums, and widely read books such as The Psychedelic Researcher's Handbook by Dr. James Fadiman were rapidly raising awareness about psychedelics, psilocybin, and its role in an intriguing activity called "microdosing".
What is microdosing?
Microdosing is the consumption of psychedelics in very small amounts (literally micro-quantities) of one or more psychedelic substances every few days for several weeks.
Microdosing is mainly used for:
- Reduce anxiety
- Relieve depression
- Improve focus
- Boost creativity,
- Sharpen the senses
- Facilitate communication
- Increase energy levels
or any combination of these aspects of existence, generally speaking, microdosing involves taking about one-tenth the usual "recreational" dose of a psychedelic, resulting in only a mild effect on the brain rather than "intoxication".
This more disciplined approach to using psychedelics than in the past has likely given them a better public image and led to more "mainstream" people experimenting with microdosing.
Medical professionals in the United States are also more comfortable investigating psychedelics at the microdosing level, and many are now advocating specifically for the decriminalization of psilocybin as part of psychiatric therapy .
Where to find Psilocybin?
If you Google "psilocybin" 99% of the content the browser will display will be about psilocybin mushrooms , also known as "magic mushrooms" or simply "mushrooms".
Psilocybin truffles aren't widely talked about yet, but they also contain the same compound. Let's talk about both mushrooms and truffles.
What are Psilocybin Mushrooms?
Psilocybin or "magic" mushrooms are small mushrooms with long pale stems and light to medium brown caps.
They go by many names, including mushrooms, liberty, amani, agaric, mushies, blues, golden tops, liberty hats, and philosopher's stones.
It's easy to confuse them with regular mushrooms, but magic mushrooms often have a noticeable lacy white ring or collar high on the stem and rather long, steeply angled caps.
This guide shows what some of the most notable types of wild magic mushrooms look like.
Hundreds, if not thousands, of different species of psilocybin mushrooms have been observed over time, in 11 genera or broader biological classes. this world map shows where mushrooms most often grow. They tend to thrive in soil rich in humus and plant debris and in humid subtropical conditions.
Psilocybin mushrooms and mankind have a long history. They are recognized in Stone Age cave paintings in Africa and Europe as early as 7000 BC, as well as in ancient carvings and glyphs throughout the Americas. In October 2007 , magic mushrooms were banned in the Netherlands .
What are Psilocybin Truffles?
Psilocybin truffles are quite different from the culinary truffles served in fine dining restaurants, which are more specifically a type of (very expensive) tuber.
Psilocybin truffles are actually subterranean nodules of psilocybin mushrooms that the mushrooms use as food reserves when growing conditions above ground become too harsh.
In shape, truffles are small, tough pieces that are harder and drier than the stems and caps of mushrooms above ground.
Like mushroom tissues, they contain the compounds psilocybin, psilocin, and beocystin, but usually in smaller amounts than those found in mushrooms.
There are different types of magic truffles , including Psilocybe hollandia , Psilocybe atlantis , philosopher's stone ( Psilocybe tampanensis ), Psilocybe pajaritos , and Psilocybe mexicana .
Since September 2019 , magic truffles are fully taxed and legal in the Netherlands .
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How does psilocybin work?
Deep within the human brain is an area called the " claustrum ". It is a group of neurons that is connected to almost every other part of the brain.
Some researchers indicate that the claustrum is the seat of consciousness , awareness and sense of self
In other words, it's the part of the brain that makes us think and worry about ourselves, our health, our future, our social status and recently published research from Johns Hopkins University has shown that psilocybin , when encountering receptors in the claustrum, suppresses the level of activity in the claustrum .
This would logically lead to a decrease in the individual's self-awareness and an increase in their awareness of everything around them.
This explains why people report that after taking psilocybin their worries "disappear", or how for a time they became incredibly interested in the natural world, in a certain task or activity.
Research also shows that psilocybin can disrupt ossified neural pathways in the brain so that the brain begins to think in a new way rather than the usual way.
Psilocybin and its effects on the brain
Studies show that psilocybin can help the brain become more " open " to new experiences and smoother streams of thought .
For this reason, some researchers believe it could be a useful therapy for obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) , in which sufferers can't help but think or do the same things repeatedly throughout life. day, updating their diary; to clean; they wash their hands; check where their belongings are, etc.
Psilocybin use has also been found to reduce anxiety and depression – an effect particularly strong in a study published in 2016 which found that hospital patients with clinical anxiety and depression caused by their cancer diagnosis potentially Mortals reported an improvement in their mood , both immediately after taking psilocybin and even six months later.
It's possible it has something to do with how psilocybin suppresses ego or self-awareness in the claustrum; the individual largely "loses" the ability to care for himself for a time.
Ongoing research suggests that psilocybin (which itself is not addictive) may be useful in helping people "unwind" from addiction to nicotine , cocaine , or alcohol , perhaps due to its ability to disrupt anxiety or depression, which often lead people to self-dependence on medication, and due to its ability to disrupt habitual and repetitive behaviors (even smoking or drinking are likely forms of TOC). Take a closer look at this amazing aspect of psilocybin here .
Microdose of psilocybin, what effects?
When microdosing psilocybin, the effects are very small because the dose is very small; you will probably only experience minor changes in your mental activity.
Low enough that you can go through your day more or less normally. As The Third Wave writes, microdosing "seems to offer a promising way to reap the benefits of flux in daily life without wasting the time and energy normally associated with full travel."
4 Most Commonly Reported Outcome Benefits of Psilocybin Microdosing Include:
1. Increased focus and productivity
Many microdose users report that psilocybin helps them enter a "flow" state where they can work, play sports, or engage in creative activities for hours without distraction.
As Microdose Pro co-founder Nils Paar recounts in his Microdosing Diary:
"High levels of focus, energy and attention to the task at hand. It was easy to get into a state of flow. I worked for 10 hours straight with lots of context switching between client calls, meetings and deep work sessions. Usually all of this takes a lot of mental capacity, but today was natural and effortless. I also did a 24 hour fast - no food all day - which helped me keep the flow going. One of my most productive days of the year so far."
2. Psilocybin improves mood
In many studies, mood enhancement is cited as the most notable effect of microdosing psilocybin. Psilocybin behaves similarly to serotonin , a neurotransmitter in the brain that stimulates feelings of love and happiness.
What's fascinating about this aspect of psilocybin is that researchers have found that it can not only elevate an individual's mood in the moment; it can also maintain an enhanced mood for an extended period of time, as found in a study of over 1,200 psychedelic festival-goers .
This "afterthought" effect has also been seen in hospitalized patients with life-threatening cancer, who reported an improvement in their mood sometime after the day they took the microdose.
3. Psilocybin increases creativity
As stated earlier, psilocybin has the ability to ' disorganize ' thought patterns and increase an individual's level of ' openness ', allowing their thoughts to develop freely in new directions.
This ability, which is also shared by LSD, goes some way to explaining why psychedelics have been so popular with writers , artists, and musicians over the decades.
However, "creative" thinking can also be useful in tech, business, or other "non-creative" environments - Silicon Valley 's tech hub has become a hotbed of microdosing over the past decade, and many our own clients are young entrepreneurs.
4. Psilocybin helps with social skills
Again, this is likely due to psilocybin 's ability to suppress ego focus in the brain, which helps those who microdose it feel more comfortable in their own skin and less sensitive to opinions. others.
As Janet L. Chang tells in her blog,
"After my first dose of mushrooms, I woke up to find that my fear of public speaking was gone" and: "I felt more comfortable in public and less anxious in conversation. Although I already considered myself open and tolerant, I became more tolerant and compassionate with people."
What are the side effects of psilocybin?
Too much psilocybin is definitely not a good thing, you can technically overdose on magic mushrooms and experience severe distress, although you are unlikely to die.
Symptoms of too much psilocybin can include anxiety and panic attacks, vomiting, seizures, paranoia, and in extreme cases, coma.
Learn more from the Drogues info service.fr website.
By logical deduction, you could also overdose on magic truffles, although you would have to consume a large amount to do so.
With microdosing , and in particular truffle microdosing, the dose is so low that it is unlikely to have a significant impact on physical or mental health.
Some microdosing users have reported mild ups and downs while microdosing, such as increased anxiety .
Again Nils Paar: This leads me to believe that microdosing enhances both negative emotions (if present) and positive emotions. workload, than usual...this leads me to believe that microdosing improves negative emotions (if present) as well as positive emotions."
In summary, it is important to stick to the recommended dose of psilocybin, which is 0.5 to 1 gram, and to avoid microdosing on days when you feel anxious or overly excited.
You should also take several weeks off between microdosing phases so you don't get into the habit.
How to microdose psilocybin?
The easiest way is to simply order the ' Magical Truffle Pro Packs ', which come prepackaged and contain the standard gram of truffle per microdose, with six microdoses per strip - just as much as you'll need for a three-week microdosing phase. (some people buy two microdosing packs for a six-week phase).
The farm where the truffles are produced cultivates them to have an even distribution of psilocybin throughout the truffle tissue; truffles from elsewhere can vary in psilocybin density.
If you find or buy truffles in their original wild form, you will need to grind them into a fine powder; you can do this with a small mortar and pestle. You also need a scale that accurately measures grams and micrograms.
How much psilocybin?
When microdosing with mushrooms, the dosage levels are around 0.1-0.5 grams for a microdose and 0.5-2 grams for a "recreational" low dose. Up to 3.5 grams is a moderate dose. 3.5 grams or more will get you "high" to some degree.
These measurements relate to dried Psilocybe cubensis mushrooms and are presented by Michelle Janikian in Double Blind.
She points out that other types of mushrooms can vary in potency, and also that if you're consuming fresh magic mushrooms, you should multiply the above dosage levels by ten to account for the water content of the mushrooms.
! If you don't know what dose to start with, always start low , not high, then see how you feel!
Is psilocybin legal? What the law says ?
Magic mushrooms are illegal in the Netherlands and many other countries. Although truffles are legal in the Netherlands , they are in most other countries – where the penalties for finding psilocybin in either form can be quite severe.
Microdose Pro, specifically advocates the responsible use of psilocybin-containing truffles for microdosing where it is legal and if you are 18 years of age or older.
Before considering microdosing shrooms or truffles, first research their legal status in your country.
Legislation is endlessly varied depending on which part of the world you are in, so if in doubt check with your local authorities.
Thanks for reading about the fascinating and intriguing compound psilocybin. If you want to go a little deeper check out our related article on truffles and for more check out The Ultimate Guide to Microdosing , you might like this article.
All information in this article is based on sources and references, and all opinions expressed are my own. I do not give advice to anyone and although I am happy to discuss topics, if anyone has another question or concern they should seek advice from a competent specialist. People who have psychiatric, neurological, or cardiovascular conditions or who use psychiatric medications should avoid microdosing altogether.