Microdosing Benefits

Humans have been consuming mushrooms since our evolution over 7 million years ago. The spiritual, medicinal, and recreational use of activated mushrooms is an ancient practice that dates back thousands of years. Prior to 1971, scientists were engaged in avid research about the benefits and potential of activated mushrooms. After decades of work to destigmatize the practice, scientists and advocates are conducting new research. In recent years, the medicinal and therapeutic use of activated mushrooms has grown in popularity. 

In particular, the practice of microdosing, or taking small doses of activated mushrooms, is trending throughout entire communities. In Silicon Valley, many programmers microdose activated mushrooms to enhance their creativity, energy, focus, and critical thinking. Online microdosing communities have grown exponentially in the last few years. Over 40,000 users subscribe to the microdosing subreddit on Reddit.com. 

What is a Microdose?

A microdose is generally considered a dose between 5 and 10 percent of a standard dose. The purpose of microdosing is to bring about the benefits observed with a full dose without the full experience. Microdosing frequency is different for everyone, some dose daily and some dose weekly. The practice is most commonly repeated every 3 to 4 days. 

Those who microdose do it for a variety of reasons. Those who microdose have found relief and improvement in their mental, physical, spiritual, social wellbeing. Some people microdose to increase their energy, some to find peace, and some to enhance their creativity. Because the benefits reported by those who microdose are so numerous, the diversity of the microdosing community continues to grow. 

What are the Benefits of Microdosing?

The intake of activated mushrooms primarily affects the serotonin in the human brain. Serotonin is a chemical messenger that helps with mood stabilization, cognition, sleeping, eating, and other physiological processes. Currently, scientists hypothesize that microdosing can improve the functionality of serotonin in the brain, as well as increase neuroplasticity, which may explain microdosers’ reports of improved outlooks and overall wellbeing. 

Most of the official research on activated mushroom use was conducted before 1970 and focused on full-dose studies. The colloquial popularity of microdosing has inspired further research. Rotem Petranker is a leader in the scientific exploration of microdosing activated mushrooms and determined to expand the limited research on the practice. Currently, he is conducting a placebo-controlled study to substantiate the reported benefits of microdosing effects. In his previous research, published in 2019, Petranker developed a codebook of microdosing benefits and challenges. Most participants reported no challenges or negative side effects aside from illegality. Over 90 percent of participants reported improved mood, over half reported reduced anxiety, and a vast majority of participants reported improvements in their physiological health. 

This study revealed a wide array of perceived benefits from microdosing. In addition to the previously mentioned benefits, participants reported improved focus and energy, cognitive and creative enhancement, increases in self-efficacy, reduced symptoms, and increased social capabilities. Other studies across the globe are also being conducted to learn about the effects of microdosing activated mushrooms on people with a variety of conditions. At Johns Hopkins, scientists are focusing on how activated mushrooms affect behavior, mood, cognition, brain function, and biological health. Through their research, the team hopes to uncover the potentially activated mushrooms have to help with Alzheimer’s disease, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), post-treatment Lyme disease syndrome, eating disorders, and opioid, nicotine, and alcohol addiction. 

Microdosing Benefits – Final Thoughts

According to anecdotal testimony, microdosing activated mushrooms may help people relieve a variety of negative symptoms and enhance an array of positive human attributes. Those who microdose have reported increases in happiness, sense of peace, optimism, appreciation of life, spiritual insight, extraversion, and empathy, as well as a reduction in fear. Microdosing enables the consumer to unlock the benefits of activated mushrooms in an approachable way. 

As the practice of microdosing continues to grow in popularity, scientific research will continue expanding alongside it. Activated mushrooms offer incredible potential and may provide powerful abilities for future society as we develop further research. In fact, in November 2020, findings were published in Neurotherapeutics through an exploratory controlled study that provides preliminary evidence that activated mushrooms provide long-lasting therapeutic benefits to migraine sufferers.