To the uninitiated, you may view Amanita muscaria (fly agaric) as “that mushroom from the Super Mario Brothers.” However, long before Nintendo captivated millions with the exploits of the brave plumbers Mario and Luigi, Amanita was used for its medicinal properties.
Indeed, it is believed that shamans used the mushroom many centuries ago due to its unique effects.
Amanita muscaria is also misunderstood. Many people lump it in with ‘shrooms’ when it isn’t a magic mushroom at all. That’s because it doesn’t contain psilocybin, the famed hallucinogenic substance linked with psychedelic experiences.
Nonetheless, Amanita has some interesting effects thanks to its psychoactive chemicals, ibotenic acid and muscimol. The process of microdosing this legendary mushroom is becoming more popular, as it is seen as a relatively safe way to derive its benefits. Let’s investigate the process in this article.
What Does Microdosing Involve?
In a general sense, microdosing denotes the use of tiny amounts of a drug to see how it impacts you. By using small doses, you can ascertain its possible physiological action while reducing the risk of adverse effects. There’s scientific evidence that microdosing psychedelic drugs like LSD and psilocybin could have medical benefits, such as improved focus and mood.
While Amanita doesn’t contain psilocybin, it still seems as if microdosing could help boost creativity and problem-solving skills while reducing anxiety.
How Do People Typically Consume the Fly Agaric Mushroom?
There is more than one way to eat Amanita muscaria. A popular method is to dry the mushroom and grind it into a fine powder. You can mix it with a liquid or add the powder to capsules. You can also create mushroom tea by boiling the Amanita in water.
These days, edibles are among the most popular option. Products such as the Muscaria Gummies from Vidacap are sought-after for their convenience. Each gummy contains 500mg of Amanita extract. If you want to microdose, you can consume perhaps one-quarter of a gummy several times daily.
The Trouble with Calculating Amanita Dosage
It is rather easy to decipher the dosage for products like CBD gummies. If a gummy has 25mg of cannabidiol, you know that’s what you’re consuming.
Things are decidedly less clear when it comes to Amanita. Researchers have long believed that muscarine was the most relevant compound in the fly agaric mushroom. However, they now believe that ibotenic acid and muscimol are the main players.
In their raw state, amanita mushrooms contain ibotenic acid, which may stimulate the user. On the minus side, too much of it could prove neurotoxic! Indeed, ibotenic acid is the likely culprit when it comes to adverse effects such as vomiting and nausea.
If you want a greater level of muscimol, you must decarboxylate the mushrooms. This process involves drying them first, then simmering them for up to 180 minutes. Finally, you need a pH in the 2.5 to 3 range if you want a high muscimol content. Many people find a high muscimol level desirable since it has potential neuroprotective effects and is known to calm and relax users.
The problem is that most Amanita products on the market fail to outline the ibotenic acid and muscimol content. In essence, you have no idea if the gummies contain a high level of one or the other, which means the effects are a lottery. Ideally, brands would pay for sophisticated lab testing to provide answers, but few do.
Therefore, if possible, try to find Amanita muscaria products that specify the muscimol content.
Final Thoughts on Microdosing Amanita
If you’re intrigued by the possibilities offered by Amanita muscaria, you may elect to start microdosing it to see if it offers any discernible benefits. The process involves taking tiny amounts several times a day.
Users of Amanita report psychological effects such as repetitive thoughts, a sense of introspection and reality distortion. There are also possible adverse effects, including nausea, vomiting, headaches, and sweating.
One of the big challenges facing consumers is knowing the ibotenic acid and muscimol content of any Amanita product they take. How much ibotenic acid or muscimol does that entail if you consume a gummy containing 500mg of Amanita? Unless a brand offers detailed lab reports, you’re in the dark, which means the effects could surprise you.
Microdosing, at least, can mitigate negative effects and perhaps allow you to get the answer through trial and error, although that is hardly the most efficient method!