Neuroplasticity, neurogenesis, reconnection with self, spiritual experiences, anti-depression*
Psilocybin mushrooms have been used for thousands of years for both medical and spiritual uses among indigenous cultures throughout the world.
Psilocybin is the primary molecule that gives these mushrooms their unusual and transformative effect on how we experience reality.
When entering the body psilocybin is broken down into psilocin, which binds itself to some of the serotonin receptors in the brain. In higher doses this creates an altered state of consciousness, which is often referred to as a “psychedelic experience”. In smaller doses - microdosing - the normal field of consciousness is preserved, but with an amplified sense of Self.
Inside the brain psilocybin changes the connection between certain areas of the brain. Especially the part of the brain that is occupied with thinking about past and future, and “myself” is changed. Simply put the area where the Ego is generated is lowered.
At the same time the major parts of the brain are heightened in activity - and synchronised.
This gives the often reported experience of being less in the head, and more present and connected with everything around. This unique state promotes the brain's ability to form new neural connections (neuroplasticity and neurogenesis).
Psilocybin (mushrooms) has found its way back into the spotlight after being outed for half a century. The war on drugs prohibited use of and research in psilocybin (and other psychedelic plants and substances) even though research was showing promising results already back in the 1960’ies. Now research and lawmakers are finally starting to pick up the pace again - and show what shamans have known for millennia: the psilocybin is non-toxic, non-addictive and has the ability to heal, transform and reconnect us with our selves and others.
Studies have found that psilocybin mushrooms are an effective treatment for depression and nicotine and alcohol addictions, as well as other substance use disorders. Other studies have shown that psilocybin mushrooms were effective in relieving the emotional distress of people with life-threatening cancer diagnoses.
Today psilocybin is being studiet as a possible treatment for a great list of mental illnesses and challenges ranging from OCD to PTSD and Alzheimer's disease.
A note on dosage
It is important to note that there is a difference between microdosing and the doses used in some of these studies. As an analogy the difference can be seen as the difference between coaching and therapy. Microdosing is more like coaching where larger doses (macro doses) are like therapy.
Research and Science
- Krebs TS, Johansen PØ. Over 30 million psychedelic users in the United States. F1000Res. 2013;2:98. doi:10.12688/f1000research.2-98.v1
- de Mattos-Shipley KM, Ford KL, Alberti F, Banks AM, Bailey AM, Foster GD. The good, the bad and the tasty: The many roles of mushrooms. Stud Mycol. 2016;85:125-157. doi:10.1016/j.simyco.2016.11.002
- Barrett FS, Bradstreet MP, Leoutsakos JS, Johnson MW, Griffiths RR. The Challenging Experience Questionnaire: Characterization of challenging experiences with psilocybin mushrooms. J Psychopharmacol. 2016;30(12):1279-1295. doi:10.1177/0269881116678781
- Daniel J, Haberman M. Clinical potential of psilocybin as a treatment for mental health conditions. Ment Health Clin. 2018;7(1):24-28. doi:10.9740/mhc.2017.01.024
- Bienemann B, Ruschel NS, Campos ML, Negreiros MA, Mograbi DC. Self-reported negative outcomes of psilocybin users: A quantitative textual analysis. PLoS One. 2020;15(2):e0229067. Published 2020 Feb 21. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0229067
- Johns Hopkins Center for Psychedelic and Consciousness Research. About.
- Rosenbaum D, Boyle AB, Rosenblum AM, Ziai S, Chasen MR, Med MP. Psychedelics for psychological and existential distress in palliative and cancer care. Curr Oncol. 2019;26(4):225-226. doi:10.3747/co.26.5009
- Johnson MW, Griffiths RR. Potential therapeutic effects of psilocybin. Neurotherapeutics. 2017;14(3):734-740. doi:10.1007/s13311-017-0542-y
- Jo WS, Hossain MA, Park SC. Toxicological profiles of poisonous, edible, and medicinal mushrooms. Mycobiology. 2014;42(3):215-220. doi:10.5941/MYCO.2014.42.3.215
- Renfroe CL, Messinger TA. Street drug analysis: An eleven year perspective on illicit drug alteration. Semin Adolesc Med. 1985;1(4):247-257.
- National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA). What Are Hallucinogens?.
- Delgado J. Intoxication From LSD and Other Common Hallucinogens. UpToDate.
- Martin R, Schürenkamp J, Gasse A, Pfeiffer H, Köhler H. Analysis of psilocin, bufotenine and LSD in hair. J Anal Toxicol. 2015;39(2):126-9. doi:10.1093/jat/bku141
- Roberts CA, Osborne-Miller I, Cole J, Gage SH, Christiansen P. Perceived harm, motivations for use and subjective experiences of recreational psychedelic ‘magic’ mushroom use. J Psychopharmacol. 2020;34(9):999-1007. doi:10.1177/0269881120936508
- Lee MR, Dukan E, Milne I. Amanita muscaria (fly agaric): From a shamanistic hallucinogen to the search for acetylcholine. J R Coll Physicians Edinb. 2018;48(1):85-91. doi:10.4997/JRCPE.2018.119
- Drug Policy Alliance. Psilocybin Mushrooms Fact Sheet.
- Johnson MW, Griffiths RR, Hendricks PS, Henningfield JE. The abuse potential of medical psilocybin according to the 8 factors of the controlled substances act. Neuropharmacology. 2018;142:143-166. doi:10.1016/j.neuropharm.2018.05.012
- National Institute on Drug Abuse. How do hallucinogens (LSD, psilocybin, peyote, DMT, and ayahuasca) affect the brain and body?
*Please keep in mind at all times that none of the content published on the the*dose constitutes any form of health or medical advice or recommendation. The information on our website is valid for a cumulative number of cases, and cannot be viewed as any type or form of medical advice. We insist that you consult a medical professional if you have any type of diagnosed medical condition, or have reasons to believe you have an undiagnosed one.
the*dose is hereby released of any responsibility for any damages, direct or indirect, which may arise out of applying or failing to apply any information published on this website.