Psilocybin mushrooms, or Psiolocybe cubensis, are a type of mushroom that contains psilocybin and psilocin. These compounds are what leads to hallucinations and the “tripping” effect that occur when one consumes these mushrooms. And, there are indeed psilocybin mushrooms side effects to consider. However, psilocybin also has proven to be helpful in treating mood disorders. For details on psilocybin mushrooms benefits as well as side effects, read the list below.
Here are psilocybin mushrooms benefits:
1. Psilocybin Helps Treat Mood Disorder
For example, psilocybin mushrooms benefits include treating depression and chronic anxiety that comes from dealing with serious illnesses or disease. For example, one study found that it significantly improved mood and reduced anxiety in patients with advanced-stage cancer. (3)
And in healthy individuals, psilocybin can enhance mood. It does this by decreasing the reactivity of amygdala, which is a region of the brain that is involved with positive moods. (4)
2. Psilocybin Improves Symptoms of Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder
Also on the list of psilocybin mushrooms benefits is relieving symptoms of obsessive-compulsive disorder. Just a moderate dose, in fact, can help reduce symptoms. It can help relieve OCD symptoms in mice, as well. (5, 6)
3. Psilocybin May Help Treat Substance Abuse Disorder
Psilocybin mushrooms benefits also includes treating substance abuse disorder. This includes drug addiction as well as alcohol addiction. (7)
Furthermore, psilocybin mushrooms benefits include effectiveness in tobacco addiction. It may be a viable option for tobacco smokers seeking to quit. (8)
As you can see, there are a decent amount of psilocybin mushrooms benefits, such as treating various mood disorders and addictions. However, there are psilocybin mushrooms side effects to consider, as well.
Here are psilocybin mushrooms side effects:
1. Psilocybin Causes Mental Problems
While psilocybin mushrooms benefits include treating mood disorders, they can also swing the other way. First on the list of psilocybin mushrooms side effects is causing various mental problems. For example, it can cause dysphoria, which includes such symptoms as anxiety, agitation and panic reactions. (9)
Furthermore, psilocybin can cause perceptual distortion. This leads to a severe deterioration of one’s sense of time, place and recognition of items. (10) Intake of psilocybin can also cause feelings of depersonalization. (11)
Additionally, exposure to this mushroom can cause paranoia and schizophrenic like symptoms. Lastly, long-term use of Psilocybin can cause impairment in brain function, flashbacks, and increased delusion. (12, 13, 14)
2. Psilocybin Causes Vision Problems
Furthermore, psilocybin may cause vision impairment. It may also lead to binocular rivalry, which is a condition wherein a person is not able to recognize different images simultaneously presented to each eye. (15, 16)
3. Short-term Adverse Effects on the Body
According to one study, intravenous injection of Psilocybin can lead to a variety of emergency medical occurrences. For example, nausea, vomiting, severe muscle pain, high fever, and oxygen deficiencies in the blood are all possible side effects. Furthermore, Psilocybin can also cause prolonged pupil dilation, increased amounts of hemoglobin, changes in blood pressure, and may cause kidney damage. (17, 18, 19, 20, 21)
Other Medicinal Mushrooms
As you now know, there are a good handful of psilocybin mushrooms benefits, however, these side effects need to be seriously considered. And although there are psilocybin mushrooms side effects, there are also numerous other mushrooms with medicinal benefits you can consume. Additionally, these other mushrooms are without the same negative effects as psilocybin mushrooms.
- Cordyceps: Although these technically aren’t mushrooms, cordyceps are great for fighting free radicals. Some studies, in fact, found that cordyceps can act like cancer treatments, preventing growth of tumors.
- Maitake: Maitake mushrooms are great for stimulating the immune system. In Asia, for example, they are used in conjunction with cancer treatments. They can help reduce negative effects of chemotherapy and radiation. Furthermore, they can balance hormones, improve stamina and act as an aphrodisiac.
- Oyster: Oyster mushrooms are great for fighting inflammation and reducing joint pain. They help improve the strength of blood vessel walls and can help increase iron levels, as well. This is especially helpful if you do not eat meat.
- Reishi: Reishi mushrooms contain adaptogen herb-like agents, which are helpful in managing stress. Furthermore, reishi mushrooms are great for fighting inflammation, autoimmune disorders and heart disease.
- Shiitake: Shiitake mushrooms are great at protecting DNA from oxidative damage. They also contain all eight essential amino acids, can boost the immune system, and may fight cancer cells.
- Turkey tail: These mushrooms are colorful, and are known for treating the common cold and flu. They’re great for building up the immune system for patients who are undergoing chemotherapy, too.