The US Food and Drug Administration has described psilocybin as a breakthrough medicine

New clinical studies indicate that one or two doses of psilocybin, also known as Magic Mushrooms or Shrooms, administered in a therapeutic environment, can bring about significant and enduring changes in individuals struggling with treatment-resistant major depressive disorder, a condition that usually doesn’t respond well to traditional antidepressants.

Building on this research, the US Food and Drug Administration has acknowledged psilocybin as a groundbreaking treatment.

“One of the most interesting things we’ve learned about the classic psychedelics is that they have a dramatic effect on the way brain systems synchronize, or move and groove together,” said Matthew Johnson, a professor in psychedelics and consciousness at Johns Hopkins Medicine.

“When someone’s on psilocybin, we see an overall increase in connectivity between areas of the brain that don’t normally communicate well,” Johnson said. “You also see the opposite of that – local networks in the brain that normally interact with each other quite a bit suddenly communicate less.”

The benefits of Magic Mushrooms

Psilocybin, which the intestines transform into psilocin, a substance with psychoactive effects, is displaying potential in addressing cluster headaches, anxiety, anorexia, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and various types of substance abuse.

Micro-doses of Psychedelic Mushrooms interact with the brain through the same receptors as serotonin, the body’s “feel-good” hormone. Serotonin plays a crucial role in regulating various bodily functions, including sleep, sexual desire, and psychological states such as satisfaction, happiness, and optimism.

Individuals dealing with conditions like depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, cluster headaches, anorexia, smoking addiction, and substance abuse often exhibit low serotonin levels.

Traditional treatments involve selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), which aim to increase the availability of serotonin in brain cells. However, the effectiveness of these drugs can be uncertain, and improvements, if any, may take weeks to manifest, according to experts.

In contrast, when using psychedelics like psilocybin and LSD, researchers observe changes in brain neuron connectivity in laboratory settings within just 30 minutes.

It creates a “very, very disorganized brain,” ultimately breaking down normal boundaries between the auditory, visual, executive and sense-of-self sections of the mind – thus creating a state of “altered consciousness,” said David Nutt, director of the Neuropsychopharmacology Unit in the Division of Brain Sciences at Imperial College London.

And it’s that disorganization that is ultimately therapeutic, according to Nutt: “Depressed people are continually self-critical, and they keep ruminating, going over and over the same negative, anxious or fearful thoughts.

“Psychedelics disrupt that, which is why people can suddenly see a way out of their depression during the trip,” he added. “Critical thoughts are easier to control, and thinking is more flexible. That’s why the drug is an effective treatment for depression.”


A standard microdose usually ranges from 0.1 to 0.3 grams of dried psilocybin mushrooms, in contrast to the 25-milligram pill of psilocybin required for a full-blown psychedelic experience.


Long term effects of Mushroom Microdosing

Clearly, not every hallucinogenic encounter is positive; therefore, almost every study involving psychedelic drugs incorporates therapists who are trained to intervene in case of a negative experience and enhance the outcome if the experience is positive.

This article was originally published on CNN.

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