The Netherlands’ leading microdosing brand digs deep into the story of this fast-growing lifestyle trend
Magic truffles, which are legal in the Netherlands, are becoming big news, and have recently attracted significant investment from corporations in the USA, meaning that microdosing these sclerotia – certainly in this country – is swiftly transforming from an ‘alternative’ practice into something quite mainstream.
If you were looking to find out everything you need to know about these intriguing truffles, you’ve come to the right place – they’re our speciality.
What is microdosing magic truffles?
Microdosing is the practice of ingesting very small amounts (“micro” amounts) of a psychedelic substance to improve mental aspects like creativity, energy levels, mood, focus or motivation.
With microdosing you take such a low dosage of the psychedelic that you can continue to function capably in daily life, or even better. A typical microdose of dried truffles is just 300 milligrams; if using fresh truffles, you would have about 500 milligrams. Some people use a little bit more; each person’s preferences are different.
You can either purchase pre-prepared packs like ours, which contain six (slightly higher) one-gram microdoses; enough to last for a 3-week period of microdosing – or you can grind them down into a powder.
Either way the powdered truffle microdose can be taken “dry” as is, deposited inside empty gelatin capsules, or mixed into water or another liquid (note: we don’t recommend drinking alcohol in tandem with microdosing).
What is the difference between gourmet truffles, magic truffles and magic mushrooms?
The truffles most people know are those used as a gourmet delicacy, such as the Perigord truffle; also called a black truffle or French black truffle – scientific name Tuber melanosporum.
This kind of truffle, indigenous to southern Europe, can be found underground around the roots of certain trees and is considered to be one of the most expensive edible mushrooms in the world. There are other culinary truffles including the white truffle, summer truffle, and winter truffle. Culinary truffles are classed as ectomycorrhizal fungi, meaning they have a symbiotic relationship with the trees around which they grow.
These are something quite different; they are actually underground parts of a magic mushroom which are used as food reserves when growing conditions above ground are too difficult for the mushroom to sprout properly. They are tough little nodes, harder and dryer than the mushrooms that develop above ground – and they contain hallucinogenic chemicals called psilocybin, psilocin and and baeocystin, although in lower densities than the visible sprouted mushrooms would contain.
There are various types of magic truffles including Psilocybe hollandia , Psilocybe atlantis, the Philosopher’s stone (Psilocybe tampanensis), Psilocybe pajaritos and Psilocybe mexicana.
Magic mushrooms, meanwhile, are small mushrooms with long, pale stems and light- to mid-brownish caps. They go by many names including shrooms, mushies, blue meanies, golden tops, liberty caps, philosopher’s stones, liberties, amani, and agaric.
Like the truffle form that develops below ground, they contain active psychedelic compounds, but in a higher concentration – baeocystin, psilocin and, primarily, psilocybin.
Are magic mushrooms a recent phenomenon?
Far from it. While modern research on these mushrooms began in the 1960s, it is likely that they were used by prehistoric people for rituals as long ago as 10 000 BC – read more about our intoxicated ancestors here.
Over time, hundreds if not thousands of different types of magic mushrooms have been observed, within 11 broader genera, or biological class.
What are the benefits of microdosing magic truffles?
The effects of ingesting magic mushrooms vary from euphoria, distorted perceptions, and hallucinations to anxiety, nausea, fear, and disorientation – depending on which type and how much is ingested – also depending on the person’s state of mind at the time.
The effects of ingesting magic truffles are considered to be less extreme (although a person could arguably just ingest more of them to the same ends).
When microdosing magic truffles responsibly, the effects are very mild indeed – the intention being to experience only minor and only positive changes to existing aspects of mental activity.
Psychedelic compounds like those found in the truffles work in a similar way to the brain’s naturally-occurring serotonin, a neuro transmitting chemical that affects brain activity. While research is still continuing into the breadth of possible benefits of microdosing magic truffles, let’s look at some of the most commonly shared:
Increased focus / flow state
When you enter a flow state, you become completely focused on whatever you’re doing. All other distractions fall away from your mind, hours can fly by unnoticed and you feel completely in tune with whatever is right in front of you, whether it is noted for an upcoming exam or the latest Assassin’s Creed game. There is no anxiety, no restlessness, just a feeling of being absorbingly locked in and focused.
The psilocybin in magic truffles replicates the effect of the body’s hormone, serotonin, which helps to sharpen perception, learning ability, and memory retention. The improved mood and decreased anxiety associated with microdosing truffles likely also adds to the microdoser’s ability to focus better.
As described by The Third Wave, microdosing “seems to offer a promising path to reaping the benefits of flow on an everyday basis without the cost of time and energy that full-blown trips usually incur”.
Studies have shown that “moderate doses of psychedelics cause brain waves to shift more towards alpha-oscillations, which can also be seen in the transition to a flow state.”
In many studies, an improvement in mood is cited as the most noticeable effect of microdosing truffles. Dr. Jingshu Zhu – born in China, now living in Amsterdam – wrote about her experiences of microdosing for 30 days, saying “In general, I felt more loving, passionate, celebratory and grateful for a larger part of the day …The undertone of my overall emotional life has become much lighter and warmer, and that leads to a deep sense of confidence and optimism.”
Meanwhile, a study published in the Harm Reduction Journal found that “The most common benefit was improved mood, which suggests that researching microdosing as a potential pharmacotherapeutic treatment for depression could be worthwhile” (Thomas Anderson, a Ph.D. student and cognitive neuroscientist).
In 2018 the Dutch Psychedelic Society organized a microdosing event to test out the effects of psychedelic truffles on volunteers facing two creativity-related problem-solving tasks, one assessing convergent thinking and the other assessing divergent thinking.
The results showed that “both convergent and divergent thinking performance was improved after a non-blinded microdose, whereas fluid intelligence was unaffected.” It was also observed that “participants had more ideas about how to solve a presented task, and were more fluent, flexible and original in the possibilities they came up with.”
In broader society, the perceived link between psychedelics and creativity is longstanding and widespread …
As consciousness researcher David Jay Brown relates, the “use of psychedelic drugs by creative individuals is helping to foster an artistic renaissance, which is radically influencing virtually every aspect of human culture … Numerous references to psychedelic drugs – as well as the influence of psychedelic mind states – can be clearly and pervasively seen throughout popular culture and the arts.
If you know where to look, psychedelic influences and references appear just about everywhere – in film, music, television, comedy, advertising, comic books, fashion, toys, video games, and other multimedia art forms”.
Microdosing truffles may also help users unlock certain types of overly-constrained thinking, such as Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, allowing their mental state more freedom and, by association, a capacity for greater creative thinking – you cannot think creatively if your mind is going around in the same rigid circles all the time.
Andrew Penn writes, “British neuroscientist Robin Carhart-Harris and his team have discovered that psychedelic drugs, such as psilocybin, may have the ability to temporarily disrupt these patterns.”
Athletes have been known to take microdoses of LSD, cannabis, or magic mushrooms to boost their performance – regarding psilocybin, common to magic mushrooms and magic truffles, Maridel Reyes writes “some athletes say that it may help you go into the zone, or a flow state, during exercise”.
Meanwhile, Michael Woronko observed the effects of microdosing psilocybin on athletic performance for over a month, and relates that, in his opinion, better physical performance may in fact arise from the mental effects of the psilocybin – “My opinion is that the mind is largely what imposes certain limits we have on our physical capabilities – to an extent. An influence to the mental faculties can possibly serve to expand on these self-perceived limits, allowing for the individual to push themselves harder than they normally would with perceived ease” – read his full summary here.
Remember, psychedelics like psilocybin are not known to be physically addictive – and what’s more, many microdosers have reported that the habit has actually helped them deal with more harmful – and highly addictive – habits: smoking and drinking. Research into this area is still nascent but developing fast.
As Stephanie O’Neill reports, there are 49 million tobacco users in the United States and, for one of them – Carine Chen-McLaughlin – neither nicotine gum, nicotine patches or going “cold turkey” had helped her stop smoking – then she enrolled in an experimental study of psilocybin therapy for smokers at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, and relates that, in its wake, she not only quit smoking but developed an active repulsion to cigarettes.
A way to beat the booze?
Meanwhile, Johns Hopkins also ran an online survey of people with a history of alcohol use disorder (AUD) and found that 36 percent of respondents claimed to have decreased their alcohol consumption after taking psilocybin. While that may have been in the form of magic mushrooms, the same potential benefit should apply to the truffles.
A woman called Karen Shaw started microdosing and found, after a six-week regimen in line with the Fadiman Protocol, that “I started drinking less. I’ve not stopped. I might have a glass of wine, or some cannabis, a joint after work. But I don’t drink to excess. I don’t like getting drunk anymore. It’s not something I enjoy.”
A Double-Blind Trial of Psilocybin-Assisted Treatment of Alcohol Dependence trial currently being led by the NYU School of Medicine is investigating psilocybin as a treatment for alcohol dependence and should greatly amplify the store of credible evidence.
What are the risks of microdosing magic truffles?
By far the biggest “risk” associated with microdosing magic truffles is falling afoul of the law. While the truffles are not illegal in the Netherlands, they are in most other countries – and the penalties for being found with psilocybin can be quite serious.
At Human Pro we specifically advocate responsible use of psilocybin-containing truffles for microdosing, where it is within the law and if you are aged 18 or older. Before you consider microdosing truffles, first research their legal status for your locality. This is a good Wikipedia overview on overall drug policy in the Netherlands. Should you need further help clarifying legal status, contact your local authority.
Even in tiny amounts, psilocybin is technically a “mind-altering” substance, every human brain is complex and unique, and different users may experience different results from microdosing magic truffles. We would not recommend microdosing to anyone who is suffering from psychosis, schizophrenia or severe anxiety as it’s possible these sensitive mental states would be aggravated by microdosing.
If you are pregnant, or if you have recently had drugs, medicines, or alcohol, we also wouldn’t recommend it.
Finally, it’s best to avoid driving or operating any type of machinery on the same day as microdosing magic truffles.
Is that because you “trip” from microdosing magic truffles?
No, you should not experience any “tripping” from microdosing magic truffles; the above advice is purely precautionary. On the day you microdose you are likely to experience only subtle changes to your mental activity – improved mood, slightly more acute senses, reduced anxiety, and a tendency to focus on things more intently – you might find yourself becoming immersed in work, creative activities of some sort, exercise, socializing, gaming, reading, TV – even household chores.
That aside, you, and those you interact with, shouldn’t notice much of a difference from your normal behavior. The day after you microdose, any changes to your mental state should be hardly perceptible and, by the third day, you won’t register any effects at all.
Unlike with magic mushrooms or LSD, there has not been much scientific research, as yet, into potentially negative physiological effects from microdosing psilocybin truffles. In both physiological and social terms – and when approached responsibly (e.g. by following a respected protocol) – microdosing psilocybin truffles is probably one of the safest things you could do when it comes to substances; much safer than, for example, alcohol.
Following are some negative experiences people have shared online – bearing in mind we have found that the positive feedback on microdosing magic truffles outweighs negative feedback by a ratio of about 99:1 – finding these comments took a long time …
“I was with a friend who is a girl and she didn’t take any ‘cause she had to work that day. The problem was that I took them and she just sat there listening to music while I was spacing out and I couldn’t hold a conversation properly because i was that far gone so it was really boring for her.” Reddit
“Immediately after ingesting, the sides of my tongue get an extremely sour.flavor that won’t go away for like 30 minutes. This is not the flavor of the truffles, which I don’t mind, but seems to be some sort of a reaction. Is this an allergy?” Reddit
The bottom line: it seems that microdosing magic truffles have proved to be a very positive experience for most people, while only a few people report having either no, or a negative, response to the truffles. The best thing to do if you are worried about the potential risks of microdosing truffles is to speak to a medical professional, or speak to others who have done it – there are a number of online chat forums on Reddit and other platforms. Or chat with us! Naturally, we have used, and do use, our own microdosing products.
How do you microdose with magic truffles?
Well, first you need the star of the show; some magic truffles. Simply order our pre-packed microdose strips; these contain one gram per microdose, with six microdoses per strip – enough for a three-week microdosing protocol.
The standard recommended microdose for magic truffles is 0.5 grams to 1 gram of fresh truffle. We have found it more optimal to go a little higher, hence the one-gram microdoses we provide. You can always start with 0.5 grams and see how it affects you, then possibly go up to one gram if you feel comfortable with that.
If you buy truffles in their original form from somewhere, you will need to grind them into a powder; the finer the better. You can do this with a little mortar and pestle. Then you need a very sensitive scale; one that can accurately measure grams and micrograms.
You want to assess a couple of things before you microdose for the first time – are you in a pleasant and peaceful setting and is your mind feeling calm, rather than anxious or agitated?
If the answer is yes and yes, you’re ready to proceed.
To consume the microdose, simply mix the powder into a glass of water or a smoothie.
Alternatively, you can empty the powder into an empty gelatin capsule and swallow the capsule; this means you won’t have to taste the truffle powder, which some people find a bit earthy and unpleasant.
How often can you microdose magic truffles?
Dr. James Fadiman, who wrote a popular book called The Psychedelic Explorer’s Guide, recommends taking a microdose once every three days i.e. if you take your first microdose on a Monday, then don’t take any on the Tuesday or Wednesday; your next microdose would be Thursday; the next after that would be Sunday, and so on.
Although there are one or two others, Fadiman’s protocol for microdosing is the generally agreed-upon standard, and he settled on it for two reasons – firstly, he found that “The psychedelics are actually gone within a few hours, but you have the same kind of feeling – functioning better – for two days.”
Secondly, daily microdosing could cause a tolerance to build up, making the microdosing less effective over time. You can continue with this pattern for 3-4 weeks the first time, then you should stop and revisit how the microdosing worked for you – would you do it again? Were the doses too strong or too mild? Any negative effects? See more about journaling below.
If you decide to microdose again after the first phase, we would suggest you take at least a month or two’s break before you re-commence microdosing. In your second phase of microdosing, you can probably keep going according to the Fadiman protocol for anything from 6 – 12 weeks then, again, take a couple of months off and assess how it went.
How long can you continue with microdosing truffles?
We would not recommend microdosing continuously for several years, simply because there is not enough of a bank of research available yet, to inform us about the effects or implications of long-term microdosing.
Our advice would be to follow the Fadiman protocol (microdosing every three days) for up to a month, then take at least a month’s break from microdosing. While psilocybin truffles are not physically addictive, you would not want to become mentally addicted to the habit of microdosing, if you are someone who is prone to habit-forming. The Third Wave recommends “ microdosing “for a maximum of three months at a time, and dispersing microdosing periods throughout the year.”
After their first phase of microdosing, some people just microdose sporadically whenever they feel they need it, for example, if they think it will help with studying or with a project they’re working on.
Optimizing your microdosing routine
A cottage industry has been growing around microdosing journaling; the practice of diligently recording your daily experience of microdosing. There are a number of reasons why keeping a journal of your microdosing experience is important:
- Journaling your experience will help you track the effects of microdosing and to work out exactly how often, and how much, you feel you should be microdosing- remember, everyone is different and it is not an exact science.
- Microdosing is really a journey of discovery – and what you are discovering is your human brain – and journaling your experience of microdosing will increase your sense of self-awareness.
- Every microdoser’s journal adds to the store of knowledge on microdosing, especially the less-chronicled experience of microdosing magic truffles, and your journal – when shared online – could in the future be a helpful resource for other people new to microdosing.
Where can you get magic truffles for microdosing?
Since you’re just a page away already and because we’ve invested our resources into creating a high-quality, convenient product, we recommend you order from our online shop.
There are other websites where you can buy ready-to-consume magic truffles – and you can also order truffle-growing kits if you’d like to make that process part of your experience. Finally, there are a number of “smart shops”, especially in Amsterdam, that may stock dried or fresh magic truffles. Thank you for reading this article and get in touch with us about any queries you have – we are here to support your positive microdosing journey. If you’d like to know more about microdosing psilocybin and other substances, this companion article should prove enlightening.