An ever growing list of studies and clinical research trials confirm that “Magic Mushrooms” are more than merely a recreational entheogen. Researchers at the Heffter Institute, the Uvona Institute, and John Hopkins University are in the midst of clinical trials using psilocybin for the treatment of depression, anxiety, addiction, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.
Commonly referred to as “magic mushrooms”, there are more than 200 species of mushroom with psychoactive properties. These mushrooms have been used ceremonially for thousands of years in almost every part of the world, but have recently enjoyed a resurgence in popularity in western culture.
Psilocybin mushrooms are proven to be one of the least toxic substances known to man, there has never in the history of the human species been a recorded death attributed to a psilocybin overdose.
Comparatively data from the CIHI (Canadian Institute for Health Information) shows that an average of 10 people die every day from substance abuse, with the majority of those deaths attributed to alcohol.
Not only is Psilocybin one of the safest substances on the planet, it also has a multitude of benefits to offer the recreational user, the medicinal patient, and the spirtual/consiousness explorer.
Health benefits associated with psilocybin mushrooms
1. Stimulates Neurogenesis
A study conducted by the University of South Florida
published in 2013 studied the effects of psilocybin mushrooms on fear-conditioned mice.
What they discovered startled them. The main ingredient in psilocybin mushrooms, psilocybin, empowered the mice to get over their fear and promoted new neurons growth and regeneration in their brains. The study leader, ,Dr. Briony Catlow of the Lieber Institute for Brain Development had a few things to declare after this study:
“Memory, learning, and the ability to relearn that a once threatening stimuli is no longer a danger absolutely depends on the ability of the brain to alter its connections. We believe that neuroplasticity plays a critical role in psilocybin accelerating fear extinction”
2. Reduces Social Anxiety
We all go through social anxiety or rejection from time to time, right? It is a natural process when it comes to interacting with other individuals.
A study performed by a team of Swiss neurobiologists, published in April 2016, stated that psilocybin is of great help in reducing the emotional pain resulting from social anxiety and rejection.
3. Combats Depression
Studies have shown that psilocybin mushrooms are effective at treating depression very effectively, as well as treating post-traumatic stress disorder.
4. Helps Alleviate OCD
Obsessive-compulsive disorder (also known as OCD) is a psychiatric disorder which is occurring especially in patients suffering from schizophrenia, bipolar disorders and other psychiatric ailments.
A study performed by the University of Arizona in 2006 discovered that psilocybin mushrooms are very effective in alleviating the symptoms of this disorder.
5. Lowers Anxiety
In a 2011 study, researchers discovered that advanced-stage patients suffering from cancer would have their anxiety regarding death drastically lowered after being administered psilocybin mushrooms
Functional MRIs performed during the psychedelic experience induced by psilocybin mushrooms suggest that these “magic mushrooms” wire different parts of the brain together, facilitating a much smoother communication between its various parts.
The study was published in the Royal Society Interface and the images look like this.
Research is only starting to (timidly) grasp the immense healing potential of this substance. In the future we will surely witness a plethora of modern medical applications for this ancient medicine.