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How to Microdose Mushrooms?
What Mushrooms to Microdose?
There are two main groups of hallucinogenic fungi, the Psilocybes and the Amanitas. The Amanitas are an interesting group, containing some hallucinogenic species, some toxic species (including several of the most dangerous mushrooms in the world), and a few that are merely and safely delicious. Of the hallucinogenic group, A. muscaria is the best-known. It has been used, apparently sacramentally, since ancient times, but it’s not especially popular among recreational users now, possibly in part because if not processed properly it is mildly but unpleasantly toxic. It’s difficult to find any research or media coverage of its use in microdosing at all—and yet some people do microdose it[i], reporting that it helps with focus and emotional control.
Much more popular is the Psilocybe group, these magic mushrooms contain psilocybin and are easy to grow. A. muscaria and its siblings do not contain psilocybin at all—their “active ingredient” is moscimol (plus the toxin, ibotenic acid, which must be processed out). The two substances do very different things in the body, accounting for the very different results of taking each. They are not interchangeable. It is the Psilocybes most people mean when they refer to “magic mushrooms” and “shrooms.” While they can cause nausea and other side effects, they are generally safer and reportedly more enjoyable to use than A. muscaria. The research and media attention on microdosing mushrooms is virtually all about the Psilocybes, as is the rest of this article.
There are dozens of known species of psilocybin mushrooms, several of which are commonly used, such as P. panaeolus and P. mexica, but by far the most popular is P. cubensis, a species now available in a huge number of cultivated strains, each with its own colorful name. Unfortunately, many people don’t differentiate between P. cubensis strains and the other species, referring to of all of them simply as “types of shroom.”
It’s not clear that the differences between species or varieties matter much for microdosers, except that the size of the dose needs to be adjusted, since potency varies (especially between species). People using macrodoses—tripping—do claim that different species, and even different varieties of the same species, produce different qualities of trip. One might be more physical, another more visual, and so on. It’s not clear whether they’re right or, if they are right, whether such variation makes a difference for microdosing when not tripping is the idea. In any case, people who discuss microdosing almost never specify which Psilocybe they meant—when they do, they specify P. cubensis, not one of it’s specific strains.
Dosage: What Amount to Take?
The first step (after acquiring some magic mushrooms, of course) is to establish the size of the dose. Unfortunately, people vary in their sensitivity, so there is no one-size-fits-all dosing guide. Mushrooms also vary in their potency (from one species to the next and also within species), making dosing harder to estimate than for other substances. Fortunately, there is an established procedure using “levels”.
- Dry the mushrooms.
- Grind the mushrooms using a mushroom grinder or equivalent.
- Using a scale meant for MG’s measure out the smallest precisely measurable amount (level 1) and take it to see what happens.
- If nothing happens, a few days later, take a slightly larger amount (level 2). Record the dose sizes in a journal.
- When the dose gets large enough to begin to interfere with ordinary activities or to cause hallucinations, then the previous dose (the largest one that did not trigger a “trip”) is the microdose for that batch.
- The next batch may well have a different dose, but start with the dose from the first batch and adjust larger or smaller as needed.
There is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to dosage but if you want some guidance try our magic mushroom dosage calculator.
When to Microdose Mushrooms?
It’s usually considered better to take the dose in the morning, since that way the effects will be in full force during the day. Also, many people report trouble sleeping if they take the dose too late in the day.
Probably the easiest way to take the dose is in a pill—it’s possible to buy empty gel caps and make pills, each with the properly measured dose—then the measuring only has to be done once per batch. Some people prefer to make shroom tea by sprinkling the shroom powder in tea with honey. It doesn’t taste good plain. Another method of consumption may be Lemon Tek.
Although the psilocybin only stays in the body for a few hours, the effects diminish gradually over the following two days.
Frequency of Dose
Most experts advise microdosing every third day (that is, skipping two days between doses) for a month, then stopping entirely, at least for a while. Since the effects last a few days, microdosing every day is unnecessary and could, moreover, cause desensitization. Stopping after a month not only also helps prevent desensitization but also gives the user a chance to re-evaluate; if the objective has been met, more might not be necessary. There are other protocols out there, too, but all share the idea of scheduled doses and days off over a period of several weeks.
After the initial few weeks of regular microdosing and then some time off, some people find it helpful to switch to microdosing on an as-needed basis, such as to deal with a particularly challenging day at work.
Many people wonder if it’s okay to microdose daily, we would suggest against that.
Pairings: What to Microdose Mushrooms With?
It’s not necessary to combine microdoses of psilocybin mushroom with anything, though some advocate taking it alongside lion’s mane mushroom, to promote neural growth, and niacin, to increase the effectiveness of the dose. Drinking enough water and otherwise taking good care of the body is important, too, since there is no sense taking mushrooms to feel better and not also taking these simple steps towards health.
microdose shroom Alcohol
Microdosing while drinking alcohol is one of those subjects not covered much. While the principle of “go about your ordinary activities” would seem to suggest moderate drinking while microdosing is fine, it’s also true that some people use microdosing specifically to help them stop drinking alcohol. Psilocybin at hallucinogenic doses is not known to interact badly with alcohol (though it’s unclear whether the matter has been thoroughly investigated) but drinking while tripping can make it harder for a person to judge how impaired they really are, possibly leading to risky behavior[ii]. All of this suggests that microdosing and drinking might not be the worst combination, but is still not an especially good idea.
microdose shroom Cannabis
Since psilocybin and cannabis can both be microdosed, the question is whether they can or should be microdosed together? Again, there are no known dangerous interactions between the two. There is also some overlap in their effects. At large, recreational doses, using a high-CBD cannabis strain shortly before tripping is reported to ease some of psilocybin’s side effects, such as nausea, while using a high-THC strain during the trip can intensify it[iii]. Microdosing the two together could therefore be a good idea, but since the results are difficult to predict, it’s probably best left to experienced microdosers.
microdose shroom Caffeine
People are starting to deliberately microdose caffeine, and informal caffeine microdosing (for example nursing a single coffee all morning long) is nothing new. The idea is to get a sight stimulant boost without over-doing it or risking a post-caffeine crash, though the jury is still out on exactly what the health effects might be[iv]. Some companies are also interested in selling coffee with microdoses of psilocybin in it—presumably the coffee would also contain a typical macrodose of caffeine[v]. What exactly these two substances do in combination seems unclear, as their is little data to go on currently.
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microdose shroom Benefits
Improved mood, more creativity, more energy, more focus, and “social benefits” (presumably openness, confidence, empathy, or some combination thereof) are the most commonly-reported benefits among surveyed microdosers—although, curiously, reduced focus is a commonly-reported problem.
Conditions often treated by microdosing psilocybin include obsessive-compulsive disorder and depression[vii], anxiety[viii], migraines[ix] and cluster headaches[x], all of which seem to respond to microdosing even where established treatments have proven ineffective. Anxiety can also be an unwanted side-effect, though.
The fact that psilocybin has been reported as both relieving and causing the same conditions (anxiety and lack of focus) is confusing, and although these uses are receiving some scientific study, none can be said yet to be “proven” or, really, even supported by research. The possibility that microdosing works for otherwise untreatable problems is certainly intriguing.
Other conditions that some people suggest microdosing might help include: post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), pain, neuropathy, multiple sclerosis (MS), Parkinson’s disease, dementia, bipolar disorder, and tinnitus. Unfortunately, while some of these uses are being researched, results are not available, yet. There is no way to know if microdosing helps these conditions.
microdose shroom Effects
Users often report feeling very present and very socially connected while microdosing. If the dose is adjusted properly, there are no unusual visuals, but the texture of consciousness is definitely, if subtly, changed. Not being mentally present—daydreaming and ruminating—may actually feel impossible. People often feel more energy and more social confidence. Depression, if present, may lift, at least partially.
Most microdosers surveyed report a positive experience, even if they experienced side effects, although it’s worth noting that most studies have used designs that tend to select for people who like microdosing.
microdose shroom Side Effects, Possible Risks and Legality
The most serious risk associated with microdosing psilocybin is that of legal trouble, since in most jurisdictions the substance is illegal. Possession of even small quantities could lead to prison. There are some places where use has been at least decriminalized. It’s important to know what the legal situation in your area is before doing something that could risk prosecution.
There are no known long-term health risks associated with microdosing, but there could be unknown ones, since research so far has been minimal.
Over half of those surveyed reported no unwanted side-effects at all, while others did report short-term problems, most commonly impaired focus and physiological discomfort (which likely means nausea)[xi]. Anxiety can also be a problem.
One issue not directly related to the pharmacology of psilocybin is that microdosers often use the technique to treat themselves for serious medical problems without the supervision of any experienced, trained healer—a dangerous situation, given that some of these problems (such as depression and addiction) can kill people. Microdosing is often used when other, legal treatments have failed, or when financial or logistical barriers to legal treatment options have proven insurmountable. At that point, some users wash their hands of legal medicine. Even those interested in continued guidance from a professional will not likely find anyone willing or able to help someone microdose. Many users do fairly well self-treating, but the risk of a serious mistake is quite real.
Always check with your doctor before microdosing.
The Why (and Why Not) of Microdosing Mushrooms
People microdose mushrooms for, broadly speaking, either of two reasons: to add something they like to their lives (more creativity, more empathy) or to remove something they don’t like (bad habits or negative thought patterns). The latter seems somewhat more effective, based on surveys of users[vi].
Everything we know about microdosing psilocybin comes from either surveys of users, anecdotal reports, or extrapolation from studies of macro-dose use. There have been no double-blind clinical studies to see whether microdosing really works as a treatment for anything (meaning placebo effect or a combination of coincidence and confirmation bias are possible), and no studies on the safety of long-term, repeated microdosing. It’s important to keep that uncertainty in mind when deciding whether to use the technique.
Users’ opinions are split over whether microdosing psilocybin for any of the above uses is more effective, less effective, or the same as taking larger, hallucinogenic does—though there is something to be said for accessing the benefits while still going about one’s daily life, not something possible while hallucinating.
Microdosing Mushrooms (How To Guide)
microdose shroom, What Is Microdosing?
Microdosing mushrooms consists of taking a small, “sub-perceptual” dose of psilocybin.
Since the dosage is sub-perceptual, this means you won’t feel the full psychoactive effects of a magic mushroom “trip.”
There are still many benefits associated with microdosing mushrooms.
What Does Microdosing Mushrooms Feel Like?
Microdosing mushrooms can have a range of effects, depending on the person.
Some people report feeling more energetic, while others say they feel more relaxed. Some people report feeling less anxious or depressed, and others say that their thoughts are more clear.
It’s important to keep in mind that everyone’s experience is different, so it’s best to start with a low dose and increase gradually if needed.
Mushrooms are a psychedelic drug, so they can also cause changes in perception and thinking.
Some people find these changes enjoyable, while others find them unsettling.
It’s important to be aware of the risks associated with taking any psychedelic drug before deciding whether or not to microdose mushrooms.
What Are The Benefits Of Microdosing Mushrooms?
The main benefits of microdosing mushrooms are:
- Improved mood and focus (Harm Reduction Journal)
- Increase in positive health behaviors (Harm Reduction Journal)
- Reduction in use of addictive substances (Harm Reduction Journal)
- Improvement of creativity and expression (Stat News)
- Decreased levels of anxiety and depression (Harvard Health)
- Decreased inflammation (Harvard Health)
- Increased productivity (AP News)
There’s ongoing medical studies that continue showing positive benefits of microdosing psilocybin.
How Much Is A microdose shroom Of Mushrooms?
A microdose of mushrooms is typically between 0.1g and 0.5g.
Things like body type, weight, diet, and overall health will affect how much of a microdose you should take.
As with most substances, we recommend starting at the low end of the spectrum and increasing dosage incrementally as needed.
How To microdose shroom
When it comes to microdosing shrooms, there’s a few different things to consider.
These include how you consume the microdose, the schedule in which you microdose, and the integration.
microdose shroom Consumption Methods
There are several different ways to consume magic mushrooms.
- Ingesting dried mushrooms
- Consuming dried mushroom powder
- Taking mushroom capsules
Our recommendation is to put the mushroom powder in tea or your favorite drink since dried mushrooms usually taste like dirt.
The easiest way to consume a microdose is by putting the mushroom powder into pill capsules.
As always, make sure to measure each dose properly using a weighted scale.
You should not ever try to smoke shrooms as this won’t provide the desired hallucinogenic effects that ingesting them offers.
How Often To microdose shroom
Making sure you microdose on a specific schedule can help you benefit the most from psilocybin.
The most popular microdosing schedule is to dose three days in a row then take two days off.
The best time to microdose mushrooms is in the morning, that way the psilocybin doesn’t affect your sleep.
Since there’s no “set schedule” for microdosing, you can also experiment to see what works best for you.
microdose shroom Integration
Microdosing mushrooms has been shown to have many positive benefits for users.
However, since each dose is “sub-perceptual,” your life isn’t likely to change after a few times using mushrooms.
That’s why it’s important to integrate with the effects of microdosing daily.
We recommend keeping a journal handy so you can record thoughts, feelings, and emotions during each microdose.
How To Grind Mushrooms For Microdosing
There are several ways to grind mushrooms for microdosing.
You can use a food processor, a coffee grinder, or a mortar and pestle. If you’re using dried mushrooms, it’s best to grind them into a powder.
If you’re using fresh mushrooms, you can chop them into small pieces or grate them.
Once the mushrooms are ground, the powder can be put in your favorite drink or packed into pill capsules.
Microdosing Mushrooms Side Effects
There’s a lack of scientific research on the side effects of microdosing mushrooms.
However, some people who have microdosed report experiencing short-term side effects such as dizziness, nausea, and anxiety.
Long-term side effects of mushrooms are not well understood, but could potentially include negative impacts on mental health.
Therefore, it is important to consult with a healthcare professional before starting any new medication or supplement, including mushrooms.
Best Mushrooms For Microdosing
When it comes to magic mushrooms, there’s several different mushroom strains you can choose from that vary in size, potency, and unique effects.
The most popular mushroom strains to microdose with are Golden Teachers, B+ Cubensis, and Blue Meanies.
When it comes to picking the right strain, it’s important to do your research and read up on what each one has to offer. Different strains can produce different effects, so it’s important to find one that matches your personal preferences.
You can read more here about the Best Psilocybe Cubensis Strain as ranked by Healing Mushrooms.
Microdosing Mushrooms Vs. Acid
Microdosing mushrooms and acid are two different ways of getting the same result: a small dose of the drug that causes minimal hallucinogenic effects.
With mushrooms, this usually means ingesting between 0.2 and 0.5 grams; with acid, it’s typically taking between 20 and 30 micrograms.
The main difference between shrooms and acid is that while both hallucinogens will cause some changes in perception, the changes brought on by mushrooms are more pronounced and longer-lasting than those caused by acid.
This is because the active ingredient in mushrooms (psilocybin) is a lot more stable than LSD (lysergic acid diethylamide), which means it’s less likely to be broken down by the body into inactive
Third Wave Microdosing Course
Are you interesting in microdosing mushrooms, but want hands-on guidance during your journey?
If so, we recommend checking out the Microdosing Course from Third Wave.
The program is a complete walkthrough of how to microdose mushrooms safely and also includes a variety of interviews from some of the top minds in psychedelics.