Mushrooms are prized across the world for their incredible health benefits. Ancient cultures harnessed the healing power of mushrooms centuries ago, and today, scientists continue to research the many ways these fungi contribute to overall health.
Magic mushrooms—the ones we associate with a shroom "trip," thanks to psychoactive properties—have their own unique benefits, but every mushroom (even the basic varieties you might find on the salad bar or your slice of pizza) do our bodies good.
We will explore the benefits of every day as well as magic mushrooms below. Read on to learn more about these natural wonders and how fungi can work as an incredible tool in promoting health and wellness.
The Benefits of Mushrooms in Your Diet
While there is always a new fad diet lurking around the corner, practical advice from healthcare experts always seems to prevail. A well-balanced diet, especially one containing nutrient-rich foods, will always win out over extreme and limited diets geared toward rapid weight loss.
Fueling our bodies with healthy and nutrient-dense foods is a long-term strategy, one that enables us to prevent disease, promote brain health, maintain a healthy weight, and boost energy levels without the "crashes" associated with highly processed foods. As an added bonus, a nutrient-dense diet does wonders for our hair, skin, and nails.
Mushrooms more than fit the bill when it comes to nutrient-rich foods. They are packed with vitamins and minerals, which support the body's immune system. Low in calories, carbs, and sodium, mushrooms are a healthy choice that packs a punch without any of the bad stuff. Their B vitamin content helps our bodies get energy from food and also supports brain health.
Mushrooms contain antioxidants that may reduce certain cancer risks, and they also offer an important source of vitamin D in vegan diets. Mushrooms are a hearty stand-in for meat and offer an alternative for anyone who needs to lower sodium, fat, and cholesterol intake.
The Benefits of Mushroom Supplements
Even after reading all of the reasons mushrooms are good for you that we have outlined above, you may be sitting firmly in the "no" camp. Despite all the wonderful nutrients they offer, mushrooms are still a no-go for some palates.
Even though we love all things mushrooms, we understand that both the taste and the texture may not be appealing to everyone. The earthiness of mushrooms turns some people off, while others may find their cooked texture too slimy to be enjoyed. Not liking mushrooms does not make you a picky eater, necessarily: they simply aren't for everyone.
Fortunately, you can still reap the benefits of mushrooms thanks to supplements. These days, the wellness market boasts every kind of mushroom supplement imaginable, from capsules to gummies to teas and coffees. In some cases you may find mushroom extracts used in conjunction with CBD.
Mushroom supplements are the perfect way to enjoy all of the health benefits associated with mushrooms while bypassing the taste and texture issues that can be off-putting. As is the case with any supplement, you should discuss mushroom supplements with your healthcare provider to be sure they will not interfere with any of your existing medications.
The Benefits of Magic Mushrooms
Magic mushrooms are those that contain psychoactive properties, and these fungi represent one of the most promising areas in mushroom research as we are beginning to discover significant links to their promise and potential in the field of mental health.
Magic mushrooms have long been enjoyed recreationally, with users describing the effects as everything from slightly psychedelic to a full-blown spiritual awakening. Beyond the trippiness and fun of fungi, there is a growing body of theories about how they can be used to combat some of the major mental health issues that plague many millions across the globe.
Those seeking mental health care and treatment should always seek the guidance of professionals, and magic mushrooms are not a first line of defense or intended to replace the traditional methods of therapy, medication, and various psychiatric treatments, whether as part of an inpatient or outpatient practice.
Some individuals may find mental health benefits from magic mushrooms, and we will likely see additional future research studies in these areas:
Some early studies show psilocybin—the psychoactive compound present in magic mushrooms—as effective in reducing anxiety in some individuals. It should be noted that magic mushrooms could also increase anxiety in others, especially if faced with negative thoughts or images during a shroom trip, so more research is needed to determine how to best harness the psilocybin effect to relieve (and not cause) anxiety.
The World Health Organization estimates that 5% of the adult population worldwide suffers from depression, and magic mushrooms may provide some relief or lower levels of depression in individuals.
Psilocybin is thought to lower depression levels, although more extensive studies are still needed. Patients being treated for depression should speak to their mental healthcare providers before trying any new treatments on their own.
Another area of promise related to magic mushrooms is the link between psilocybin and drug or alcohol cravings. Some researchers have begun to analyze whether magic mushrooms could be useful as a tool to stave off drug and alcohol cravings; there is also a theory that this could apply to smokers' cravings for tobacco.
More research will be needed before magic mushrooms can be used to combat substance misuse, but the possibility is certainly promising.
Magic Mushrooms: Risks and Side Effects
Too much of a good thing can sometimes be a bad thing, and overdoing it when it comes to magic mushrooms could leave you with some undesired side effects, such as dizziness, nausea, or frightening hallucinations.
The sometimes adverse side effects associated with magic mushrooms are the main reason why more research is needed to determine how they can be used to treat mental health conditions without negative consequences.
Additionally, eating wild mushrooms also carries the risk of ingesting a poisonous mushroom by mistake. If you experience the symptoms of mushroom poisoning—which may include muscle spasms, delirium, or gastrointestinal issues—seek medical treatment immediately.
Road Trip: The Best Mushroom Option for Magic
Road Trip mushroom gummies can turn any experience into an adventure, and you can rest assured you are buying only the best products with the best ingredients, all of which are third-party lab-tested. Use our gummies responsibly, following manufacturer guidelines, when you want to experience true mushroom magic.