Frequently Asked Questions
There are two methods:
BREWING A TEA
Put your desired dose in 1-1.5 cups of water and boil for 10 minutes. If you wish, you can add other delicious herbs to make it more palatable such as putting the mushrooms in a chai tea blend. Comes on faster than eating raw mushrooms and reportedly less nausea.
Grind your desired dose into a powder and put in a small cup or bowl. Add the juice of 1-2 lemons until the mushrooms are covered in lemon juice. Let them sit for 15-20 minutes. Consume in its entirety. Comes on fastest, strongest, and reportedly significantly less nausea.
There are lots of different mushroom tea recipes online, but I like to keep it simple. I’ve followed the recipe below many times with great results and no loss of potency as far as I can tell. In fact, the majority of my survey respondents also reported a similar method with some minor alterations.
SIMPLE SHROOM TEA RECIPE
1. Weigh out the dose of mushrooms. If you don’t have a scale, please get one! There’s nothing worse than taking fewer shrooms or more shrooms than you meant to, only to find out a couple hours in.
2. Grind mushrooms into a powder. You can use a cannabis grinder or coffee grinder for this.
3. Chop up some ginger and add to mushroom powder
4. Pour hot water over mushrooms and ginger (and optional tea bag)
5. Let sit for 10-15 mins
6. Add honey to taste and enjoy!
Optional if nausea is your main concern: Strain out mushroom bits with a strainer and only consume the tea.
In the end, making your magic mushrooms into a tea can slightly alter the experience and make consumption a little easier on your taste buds and digestive system, but be prepared for it to come on a little faster and possibly stronger than eating raw mushrooms. And remember, for the safest psilocybin mushroom journeys, always take safe use practices into consideration like we outline in our guide to taking shrooms. Enjoy and safe travels!
Mushroom tea is an infusion of mushrooms in water, made by using edible/medicinal mushrooms (such as lingzhi mushroom) or psychedelic mushrooms (such as Psilocybe cubensis). Edible mushrooms always have low levels of calories.
Another downside to chewing and swallowing dried mushrooms is the taste. To many, it’s not the most pleasant experience in the world and it can be hard to get down without gagging. But to side step this, many folks make their shrooms into a tea and add other tea bags to mask the earthy mushroom taste.
While I recommend adding ginger and honey for taste and digestion in Your Psilocybin Mushroom Companion, many of my survey participants are taking mushroom tea fusions to new flavorful levels by adding things like hibiscus and licorice root. Popular household favorites also include green or chamomile tea bags, and many folks reported adding lemon, lemon peel, a splash of orange juice, or other citrus for both the taste and the extra kick. A 65-year-old who filled out the survey and has taken mushroom tea “hundreds of times” reported they mix mushrooms with “Berry Red Zinger” tea bags and “never had anyone dislike the taste.”
Aside from making shrooms easier to digest, many of my survey participants reported they also enjoy the ritual of making their mushrooms into a tea. The process of breaking up their shrooms and brewing them has become its own ceremony to many, one that helps them prepare their mindset and set intention for the upcoming journey.
“Preparing something to drink is a ritual. Any technique that requires just a little bit of attention to a few variables focuses one’s awareness,” explained a 32-year-old who’s had mushroom tea around 20 times. “It’s part of a process of creating a space for an experience… [and can function] as a grounding exercise to allow the person to ‘be in the now’ for the duration of their drink.”
Besides making the magic mushrooms come on a little faster and possibly stronger, some folks report that the type of tea bag, herbs, or fruit they mix with their shroom tea can also have an effect on their mushroom experience.
“Anytime you drink a tea it changes your subjective experience,” says James W. Jesso, host of the Adventures Through the Mind podcast and author of Decomposing the Shadow: Lessons from the Psilocybin Mushroom. He explains that when you drink a tea, it has a certain effect on your experience: Whether that’s a calming sensation from lavender or an arousal effect from Catuaba bark,” says Jesso, “the art of tea is the art of herbal alchemy.”
Jesso also brings up psilocybin’s ability to change one’s “feeling state” to one where “feeling is an act of perception.” And that, perhaps, we’re extra perceptive to how our herbal teas are affecting us when we mix them with psilocybin. Lindsey Bartlett, cannabis industry writer and editor at Green Entrepreneur reports something similar: “I add in other tea ingredients for digestion and happiness, like tangerine, turmeric, white tea, marshmallow root, or peppermint.” Bartlett also says that she’ll add some seasonal fruit to her brew, and the trip itself can feel seasonal in turn. “In winter I was using blood orange juice and peels. The tea turned this deep, deep red and the trip was equally deep.”
Jesso also takes this idea one step further, that psilocybin-containing mushrooms are intelligent and speak to us in a way. Therefore, by combining psilocybin mushrooms with other plants in the form of a tea, we’re essentially opening up a line of communication with the intelligence of these other plants.
“If I’m working and living with a plant, if I’m consuming ashwagandha every day, for example, and I’ve been really trying to bring its effects into my body and change myself on some deeper level by having a relationship, then at some point, it might make sense to explicitly combine it with psilocybin to more deeply explore what that impact is,” explains Jesso. “Because I’m able to think and feel into myself in a deeper way [on psilocybin]. And like I said before about the intelligence of psilocybin, I think there’s a deeper capacity for the psilocybin to facilitate a dialogue between myself and the ashwagandha that otherwise wouldn’t be there, because ashwagandha doesn’t talk in human language the same way psilocybin seems to do when you take it.”
0.05g – 0.1g – Microdose.
Unless you have the most sensitive scales in the world, it’s unlikely that you’ll ever be able to weigh out less than 0.05g magic mushrooms. This is a good microdose starting point for those who are just experimenting. Completely sub-perceptual effects with very little chance of tipping over into a tripping state.
At this dose, you might perceive:
- Heightened creativity
- Increased energy, focus, and attention
- Increased mood, restfulness, peacefulness, calm
- Better memory and cognitive performance
- Increased physical and emotional comfort
0.1g – 0.2g – Medium microdose.
Yes. An amount this small makes a difference when it comes to microdosing. Even the tiniest increments can bring on more pronounced effects. This is still considered a microdose event and isn’t likely to cause serious tripping.
At this dose, you might perceive:
- Heightened creativity and mental activity
- Increased focus, attention, and pattern recognition
- Improved mood, heightened perception of the mind and emotions
- Quick mental performance
- Improved physical performance
0.2g – 0.3g – Strong microdose.
This could easily turn into a light tripping experience and so it’s not typically recommended as a microdose. However, it’s low enough to not be full on tripping for most people, and so for seasoned microdosers it could be considered.
At this dose, you might perceive:
-Altered visual and physical perception
- Heightened attention to detail
- Increased mental dexterity and problem solving
- Improved mood, energy, and increased perception of thoughts and emotions
- Abstract thoughts
0.3g – 0.5g – Minidose.
This is a very safe place to start for beginners. At this dose, visual perception becomes noticeably different and the world might start to become “trippy”.
Thoughts can become introspective and existential, or deep abstract concepts can be entertained. At the same time, this is not the kind of journey that leads to ego death or a loss of motor control.
At this dose, you might perceive:
- Mild euphoria or excitement
- Changes in visual perception (lights, vivid colours, movements)
- Changes in the way things sound and feel physically
- Heightened physical senses
- Mundane tasks suddenly become more engaging and exciting
- The arts are highly engaging, especially music and visual art
- A preference for introspection over social activity
- A desire to stretch or flow
- Increased creativity, mental acuity and pattern recognition
0.5g – 1.5g – Museum dose.
As the dose gets stronger, the effects all become more prominent. Dr Alexander Shulgin coined this dose the “museum” dose because although the psilocybin landscape is much more apparent, you can still do public or social activities like go to a museum without attracting too much unwanted attention.
At this dose, you might perceive:
- Increased visual effects (“breathing” in the environment)
- Alterations to sound, time and space perception
- Heightened physical sensations
- Confusion, anxiety, fear
- Desire to converse or talk, or alternatively a preference not to talk
- Abstract thoughts
- Increased sensitivity to light and sound
- Frustration at the “no man’s land” concept of mushroom dosage, where you tinker on the edge of a full blown psychedelic experience
1.5g – 3g – Moderate dose.
Welcome to the psilocybin psychedelic experience. It’s from here that many of the mysteries, discomforts, and epiphanies of the netherworld can take place. In these states, people can have religious experiences, terrifying experiences, or deep healing experiences. Sometimes, it’s all three.
The thing is — it’s very difficult to describe the psychedelic experience. Yes, there’s the breathing buildings and stuff. But it’s important to remember that it’s never that every time. The psychedelic is all together physical, emotional, and mental. Sometimes it manifests as heavily physical, other times completely mental, and at other times it’s emotional without the super vivid visuals.
It is different every single time.
At this dose, you might perceive:
- Altered visual perception
- Loss of fine motor control
- Desire to engage in philosophical, religious, or existential thoughts
- Desire to disengage socially
- Fear or anxiety (bad trip experiences)
- Excitement, joy, euphoria
- Deep emotional healing experiences, memory retrieval
- Repeated yawning
- Desire to move the body or stretch
- Increased appreciation for music, physical touch, the arts
- Difficulty with everyday tasks like tying shoe laces and operating mobile phones
- Nausea, dizziness, sleepiness
3g – 5g – Macrodose.
At this dose, everything that has already been mentioned may occur but with increased potency, intensity and vigour. In addition, you may perceive:
-Intense visuals with eyes closed
- A desire to remain still, lying down, or motionless
- Dissociation from the physical body
- Deep healing, memory retrieval, what feels like self-guided psychotherapy
- Complete loss of the sense of time
- Disorientation, confusion, fear or anxiety in the event of a bad experience
- Loss of motor control (recommended to have friends around)
- Nausea, vomiting, dizziness
5g – 7g – Megadose.
Increase in the intensity of all effects. You may also perceive:
- Complete ego death
- A “catatonic” state whereby there’s no desire to move nor much of a response to the physical world
- A state of existence that feels like dreaming
- Complete removal and disinterest in the physical world
- Inability to control any stream of thought or logic
- Anxiety, paranoia, terror in the event of a bad trip experience
Heroic dosing – 7g+.
If a mushroom user ever gets to this stage, it’s after years of experimentation. Terrence McKenna coined 7g the “heroic dose”. There is no real knowing how far the experience goes or whether there is a limit to what can be achieved on a dose of mushrooms. Terrence McKenna obviously believed the only limit was the dose.
Not all heroic doses end in the sense of heroism. An experience so impactful can be terrifying to the point of trauma which is why it’s not recommended without a lot of experience or even supervision.
At the heroic dose, you might perceive:
- Nothing at all (a sense of nothingness)
- Inability to differentiate between a thought or object or physical sensations, complete dissolution of boundaries
- Loss of identity
- New dimensions, parallel realities, alternate universes, aliens
The substance that makes some mushrooms "magic" also appears to help people with major depressive disorder.
A study of 27 people found that a treatment featuring the hallucinogen psilocybin worked better than the usual antidepressant medications, a team reported Wednesday in the journal JAMA Psychiatry.
"The effect was more than four times greater," says Alan Davis, an author of the study and a faculty member at both Johns Hopkins University and Ohio State University.
The study comes after earlier research offered hints that psilocybin might work against depression and after a study by researchers at Johns Hopkins found that it could ease depression and anxiety in patients who had life-threatening cancer.
The study of cancer patients "led us to consider whether or not this treatment might be effective for people in the general depression community," Davis says.
In the new study, patients received two doses of psilocybin on different days and also received about 11 hours of psychotherapy. The drug was administered in a supervised yet homey setting designed to put participants at ease, Davis says.
"They have a blindfold on, they have headphones on, listening to music," he says. "And we really encourage them to go inward and to kind of experience whatever is going to come up with the psilocybin."
Half the participants began treatment immediately. The rest were put on a waitlist so they could serve as a comparison group until their own treatment began eight weeks later.
"There was a significant reduction in depression in the immediate-treatment group compared to those in the waitlist," Davis says. And patients responded much faster than with typical antidepressants.
"The effect happened within one day after the first session and sustained at that reduced level through the second psilocybin session all the way up to the one-month follow-up," he says.
The study is notable for its scientific rigor, says Dr. Charles F. Reynolds III, distinguished professor emeritus of psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh's School of Medicine and the author of an editorial that accompanied the research.
"It offers, I think, a good deal of promise as a feasible approach to treating particularly chronic forms of depression," Reynolds says. Even so, the results still might be skewed because patients were told they were going to get the drug.
Psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy could provide needed options for debilitating mental-health disorders including PTSD, major depressive disorder, alcohol-use disorder, anorexia nervosa and more that kill thousands every year in North America, and cost billions worldwide in lost productivity.
While therapy, antidepressants, and antipsychotics help many patients, these methods often fall short. Studies have suggested that antidepressants do not work well for people who have had multiple traumas over the course of years or chronic PTSD. A new study found that the antipsychotic risperidone worked no better than a placebo in alleviating typical PTSD symptoms in patients who had the disorder long-term or who continued to experience symptoms after being treated with antidepressants.
Because these drugs can also cause intolerable side effects, many patients are left to experience PTSD with no sign of relief. Many of these patients turn to substance abuse, develop anger management issues, or commit suicide. A study analyzing data from the National Comorbidity Survey showed that out of six anxiety diagnoses, PTSD was significantly associated with suicide attempts.
There is some evidence in animal studies to show that psilocybin, the psychedelic compound found in “magic mushrooms,” may act by stimulating nerve cell regrowth in parts of the brain responsible for emotion and memory. A 2013 study from the University of South Florida. Opens in a new tab found that psilocybin stimulates neurogenesis—the growth and repair of brain cells in the hippocampus, which is the brain’s center for emotion and memory. In the study, mice that were given psilocybin overcame fear conditioning far better than mice that were given a placebo. The study supported the hypothesis that psilocybin can help break the traumatic cycle that occurs in patients with PTSD.
Stephen Ross, MD. Opens in a new tab, a psychiatrist at NYU Langone, conducted a study on terminally ill cancer patients. Opens in a new tab , and found that one-time treatment with psilocybin very quickly brought relief from distress that had lasted more than 6 months in 80 percent of study subjects.
In Dr. Ross’s study, half of the participants were randomly assigned to receive psilocybin. The rest received a control drug of niacin, which is known to produce a “rush” similar to that associated with a hallucinogenic drug experience. Halfway through the seven-week study period, all of the participants switched treatments. Neither the researchers nor the patients knew which patients had first received psilocybin or which received the control. All of the patients, mostly women, had advanced gastrointestinal, blood, or breast cancers and had been diagnosed as having serious psychological distress related to their disease.
Patients noted that after being treated with psilocybin, they felt their quality of life improve. They noted that they wanted to engage more with external activities, had more energy, experienced improved relationships with their family members, and performed better at work. The researchers concluded that if psilocybin could reduce psychological distress in terminally ill cancer patients, it could apply to less extreme medical conditions related to psychological distress as well.
Dr. Ross says that the findings “…have the potential to transform the care of cancer patients with psychological and existential distress, but beyond that, it potentially provides a completely new model in psychiatry of a medication that works rapidly as both an antidepressant and anxiolytic and has sustained benefit for months.” Dr. Ross has hope that the drug will become legal in the next five years. “If larger clinical trials prove successful, then we could ultimately have available a safe, effective, and inexpensive medication—dispensed under strict control—to alleviate the distress that increases suicide rates among cancer patients.”
Taking a single dose of a psychedelic compound found in magic mushrooms can ease symptoms of anxiety and depression in cancer patients for years, according to a study.
Almost five years after taking the compound psilocybin while having therapy, between 60 to 80 percent of cancer patients taking part in the study experienced “clinically significant” drops in their levels of anxiety and depression.
In addition, participants “overwhelmingly”—between 70 to 100 percent—linked positive life changes to their psilocybin-assisted therapy, the authors wrote in their paper published in the Journal of Psychopharmacology. The team also found the participants felt less hopeless, demoralized, and were less afraid of dying after taking the drug, compared with those who took a placebo.
The volunteers rated the treatment as “among the most personally meaningful and spiritually significant experiences of their lives,” they said.
The 14 participants involved had taken part in an earlier study that found consuming psilocybin while having psychotherapy could combat depression and anxiety for up to six months.
That study, which took place in 2016, involved a total of 29 people, but 14 of them died before the second study was conducted, and one didn’t want to be involved in the follow-up.
In a 2017 study of psilocybin and depression, researchers at Imperial College London gave psilocybin therapy to 20 patients with treatment-resistant depression, who reported benefits as long as five weeks after treatment. The study found that psilocybin decreased activity in the amygdala, which processes emotions like fear and anxiety.
"We know that when someone is on a therapeutic dose of a psychedelic, there's a dramatic increase in communication across brain areas," Johnson said. "My theory is that what we're seeing with psychedelic therapy is more like what we normally associate with talk therapy. Psychedelic therapy prompts a therapeutic process, and people learn something by transcending their sense of self and getting out of their own way."
A single dose of psilocybin, a compound found in "magic mushrooms," provides long-term relief of anxiety and depression in cancer patients, a new study finds.
In fact, cancer patients who were given psilocybin reported reductions in anxiety, depression, hopelessness, demoralization, and death anxiety more than four years after receiving the dose in combination with psychotherapy.
"Our findings strongly suggest that psilocybin therapy is a promising means of improving the emotional, psychological, and spiritual well-being of patients with life-threatening cancer," said Dr. Stephen Ross, associate professor of psychiatry in the Department of Psychiatry at NYU Langone Health.
The findings build on improvements first reported by the team in 2016, in which 29 patients with cancer-related anxiety and depression were given either a single dose of psilocybin or a vitamin placebo called niacin. Seven weeks later, they were given the opposite. This was in combination with nine psychotherapy sessions.
By 6½ months, after all patients had received psilocybin, about 60% to 80% showed clinically significant reductions in depression, anxiety and existential distress and and improved attitudes toward death.
Fifteen of the original participants were then followed up 3.2 and 4.5 years later and showed sustained long-term improvements, with more than 70% of them further attributing "positive life change's to the therapy experience, rating it among 'the most personally meaningful and spiritually significant experiences of their lives," according to the study published Tuesday in the Journal of Psychopharmacology.
"This approach has the potential to produce a paradigm shift in the psychological and existential care of patients with cancer, especially those with terminal illness," Ross said in a statement.