What are Magic Mushrooms?
Magic mushrooms are wild or cultivated mushrooms that contain psilocybin. Psilocybin is a hallucinogenic substance obtained from more than 200 types of mushrooms. The most famous Magic Mushroom is Psilocybe Mexicana. Psilocybin has been in use since ancient times. People have been using magic mushrooms for different medical and spiritual purposes.
Magic Mushrooms are not addictive, when you ingest psilocybin it is rapidly metabolized into psilocin, a chemical analog of serotonin. As a result, you experience feelings of sensory distortion and euphoria, characteristic of hallucinogenic drugs.
Recent studies and clinical trials show that psilocybin has promising results in the treatment of depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety, addiction, and other mental health issues.
Fungus with Benefits
Whether you call it Psilocybin, Magic Mushrooms, or its nickname “Shrooms”, it has shown significant value in testing. Despite this, the FDA still withholds approval for any treatment because Shrooms don’t have the broad cultural acceptance of, say, cannabis or alcohol.
In one clinical trial, it took several years and copious money to complete due to roadblocks like 32 months to obtain the license just to produce the psilocybin; and 30 months to obtain the psilocybin capsules for the actual trial. This is due to the stringent regulations surrounding Magic Mushrooms (it is still considered a controlled substance.)
Eventually, however, 12 participants with treatment resistant depression (lasting, on average, 18 years per person) were given two doses of psilocybin. The first was a 10 mg test dose to make sure there was no allergic reaction; the treatment dose of 25 mg followed one week later.
Scientists were excited to discover that this ameliorated the otherwise intractable depression in all 12 cases for at least three weeks, with five subjects maintaining their results for over three months. This is excellent evidence of potential usefulness for future treatment.
Building on that, other studies have revealed its usefulness in treating anxiety, existential suffering, or depression for terminal patients in palliative care, as well as for people suffering from PTSD anxiety. However, the question arises: Why doesn’t every recreational user have these life-changing revelations? The answer is preparation…
Expectations, Objectives, Environment, and Mood
From centuries of traditional use of psychedelics by shamans and indigenous people, it has been thoroughly recognized that first-timers need guidance. Using psilocybin usually engenders anxiety as the psychedelic effects begin, so people must be made aware of this beforehand.
To that end, first time users need to have an experienced guide to explain the unusual feelings to avoid uncontrolled anxiety and paranoia which can result in a “bad trip”. It also commonly causes some nausea, or even vomiting, so many recreational users combat this by smoking marijuana at the same time, before the psychedelic effect begins 30-60 minutes after ingestion. Marijuana’s well-known calming and anti-nausea effect is familiar to many.
In modern treatment regimens, mental health professionals select patients who are mentally sound, with depression arising from their situation, and not from a physical defect with the brain. They then provide a single room, decorated in a pleasant way, with flowers, soft fabrics, comfortably illuminated, and with music the patient likes.
Patients are instructed and prepared, working out what they expect the benefits will be. Subjects discuss their objectives ahead of time, so it is foremost in their mind as the treatment proceeds. They bring familiar objects—maybe photos, or anything they might want to regard during the experience.
They also know that psychedelics do not cause hallucinations, but rather alter how one perceives everyday objects. Walls may appear to ripple, or pulse with colors; rainbow halos may surround lights; moving objects may leave trails behind them; geometric patterns may appear when they close their eyes. They also know that barriers to their emotions can be reduced and that an increase in a feeling of “connectedness” may produce a feeling of joining with a higher power; a sense of communion with something spiritual.
All of these things taken together, expectations, objectives, environment, and mood, work to help the subject to cope with their PTSD, or depression, or anxiety in a new way. To examine them with this new found freedom, to understand them in new ways.
More Studies & Progress
The Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS) has been around since 1986, and has been able to acquire permission for psilocybin studies from the FDA that often elude traditional researchers. They receive enviable financial grants (e.g. 4.14 million from PSFC (Psychedelic Science Funders Collaborative) to further their studies. They include other psychedelics in their experimental repertoire such as MDMA and LSD.
Their stand is that chronic, intractable depression is too limited a target, and that these treatments ought to be available for much more common problems. Along with high priority research, they also target much more mundane uses such as spirituality, couple-counselling, and personal growth.
Still other researchers see its potential to treat common anxiety, PTSD (brief video: One soldier’s story), OCD, migraine & cluster headaches, and very common addictions to nicotine, alcohol, and even cocaine.
The City of Denver, Colorado actually voted to decriminalize possession on May 8th, 2019, followed 20 days later by Oakland, California which approved its own measure directing law enforcement personnel to stop investigating and prosecuting people for possession and use of psilocybin, ayahuasca, peyote, and ibogaine.
There is substantial evidence, intelligence would say overwhelming evidence, that psychedelics have a place in modern medical treatment. The 1960s notions of ”Hippies Tripping” has made authorities nervous and reluctant to move forward on investigations, or even to stand aside and let the scientific community conduct testing without enormous constraints.
Trailblazers have demonstrated again and again that these views (more commonly associated with Richard Nixon and his “War on Drugs”), simply do not have any relevance to modern, progressive, open-minded society. Psilocybin is not subject to abuse; it is not addictive; it is not harmful.
Instead it represents a rather significant step forward in broadening the treatment options available to some of the most vulnerable people in our society, those suffering from the consequences of protecting society. These are not the people that should be paying the price for the government’s reluctance to embrace change. Magic Mushrooms are Medicine!
According to the World Health Organization, depression is one of the most widespread mental illnesses worldwide. More than 264 million people globally suffer from the major depressive disorder (MDD). Studies show that MDD affects around 16 million adults in the U.S. each year.
Depression is considered a leading cause of disability in the world today. Long-lasting depression with moderate to severe symptoms typically has an effect on the sufferer’s ability to perform day-to-day activities and successfully function at school, work, and relationships.
Lastly, severe depression often leads to suicide. Nearly 800,000 people die by suicide in the world every year. What is particularly worrying, studies show that the young population is particularly vulnerable to depression and suicide. Research indicates that suicide is the second leading cause of death in young people 15 to 29 years old.
Although serious, depression is also a treatable mental health condition. There are effective treatments for depression and other mental health disorders available today. While most therapy approaches are traditional, other treatment options involve novel interventions based on recent research, such as psilocybin therapy for depression.
Growing Magic Mushrooms at Home
It is very easy to grow magic mushrooms at home, even if you lack any mushroom growing experience. There are many cultivation methods available, easiest is to buy a magic mushroom grow kit or a set of pre-sterilized mushroom grow bags. Ready to use mushroom grow bags are sterilized mushroom substrate to which you add spores to start growing. Most mushroom grow kits are already made with a fertile sterilized mushroom substrate and you buy spores from a different supplier.
Some magic mushrooms grow kits have trays or tubs, each of which provides multiple flushes of mushrooms in a matter of weeks, enough for medical micro-dosing that will help alleviate your anxiety, depression, or PTSD symptoms.
Research of Psilocybin Effects on Depression
Some people suffer from depression symptoms that don’t improve regardless of the treatment (antidepressants and/or psychotherapy). This is known as treatment-resistant depression. In treatment-resistant depression, standard treatments are not enough, but research-supported information suggests the benefits of psilocybin micro-dosing in the treatment of depression.
A study of psilocybin for treatment-resistant depression that was conducted on 16 patients with treatment-resistant depression showed fast and lasting antidepressant effects when treated with magic mushrooms.
This clinical trial that used fMRI found that micro-doses of psilocybin may cause changes in activity levels in the temporal cortex and the amygdala, the brain structures that play a key role in depression. In other words, psilocybin treats depression by increasing emotional sensitivity. This is the opposite of how effective antidepressants should work. Nevertheless, the researchers found that the intensity of such increased response to negative stimuli was correlated with greater improvement of depression symptoms.
Many study participants reported that micro-doses of psilocybin encouraged emotional confrontation with painful experiences, in contrast to earlier treatments that reinforced emotional disconnection.
The Long-Term Benefits of Magic Mushrooms
In some trials, one dose of psilocybin was enough to permanently alleviate symptoms of depression. If your struggle with life-long or treatment-resistant depression, psilocybin-assisted psychotherapy may be the solution. Psilocybin micro-dosing has proven to help people who suffer from depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, and other mental illnesses untie themselves from self-destructive thinking patterns that are common for these mental illnesses.
The good news is that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has recognized psilocybin-assisted therapy as “breakthrough therapy” in the treatment of major depressive disorder. This means that the FDA is now helping to fast-track the research of psilocybin-based treatment and to approve magic mushrooms depression treatment
You can fast track your personal path to micro-dosing Magic mushrooms with a grow kit from APN.