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  • In 2008, the Netherlands, a nation famously tolerant towards recreational drug use, outlawed mushrooms containing the psychedelic compound psilocybin.

    As a result, individuals and Dutch smart shops turned to psilocybin truffles, also known as magic truffles, which contain psilocybin but are less potent. Magic truffles have seen increasing use in the Netherlands and around the world in the years since.

    What Are Psilocybin Truffles?

    Psilocybin truffles or sclerotia (sometimes also called philosopher’s stones) are dense, hard nodules that grow underground as a part of psilocybin mushroom mycelium, an interconnected network of fungal growth. 

    They are used by the fungus organism to store food and nutrients, allowing it to to survive dry or unfavorable conditions.

    Truffles are formed by magic mushroom species including:

    • Psilocybe cubensis
    • Psilocybe atlantis
    • Psilocybe tampanensis
    • Psilocybe mexicana
    • Psilocybe hollandia
    • Psilocybe galindoii

    When used for their hallucinogenic effects, these truffles are chewed and swallowed on an empty stomach or cut up and brewed to make tea.

    Magic truffles and magic mushrooms are both considered Schedule I substances in the United States, though they have been decriminalized in Denver Co, Oakland CA, Santa Cruz CA, Ann Arbor MI, and the state of Oregon (where they are also legalized for therapeutic use).  

    What Is Psilocybin/Psilocin?

    Psilocybin is a naturally occurring compound that, when introduced into the human body, is metabolized into psilocin, a chemical with mind-altering effects somewhat similar to other hallucinogenic drugs including LSD, mescaline, and DMT.

    Psilocybin is produced by around 200 different species of fungi which also produce the active substances psilocin, baeocystin, and norbaeocystin, forming a psychedelic cocktail that can have a profound effect on human mental function.

    These “magic mushrooms” have been consumed by many human cultures, often ascribing them spiritual or religious significance.

    They were widely associated with the American counterculture and in recent years have been increasingly investigated as a potential treatment for severe depression, sleep disorders, drug dependency, and addiction.

    What Does A Psilocybin High Feel Like?

    Whether it is sourced from mushrooms or truffles, psilocybin (and related compounds contained in the truffle, mushroom stalk, or cap) triggers visual and auditory hallucinations as well as emotional changes.

    Your experience will generally begin within thirty minutes to an hour after the truffles are consumed and may last between three to six hours, though your perception may not line up with the true passage of time.

    Common effects and sensations include:

    • a feeling of increased perceptiveness
    • appreciation for the beauty of different sights or sounds
    • synesthesia, in which senses become mixed (seeing music, for example)
    • visualizing motion trails behind objects
    • visualizing auras
    • feelings of anxiety
    • a strong sense of hilarity and laughter
    • feelings of depression
    • relaxation
    • inability to concentrate
    • panic
    • psychosis

    What Effect Does Psilocybin Have On the Brain?

    Scans of brain activity after taking psilocybin (in pill form, rather than magic truffles or mushrooms) revealed that the drug reduces blood flow and activity in the amygdala, a part of the brain that becomes overactive in individuals experiencing depression and anxiety.

    The drug also loosens the connections between different parts of the brain and increased serotonin response. 

    This may reveal how the drug might ‘reset’ the brain and break compulsive thought patterns, while also prompting individuals to confront and work through lingering or traumatic emotions and memories.

    Are Magic Truffles Safe?

    Magic truffles and mushrooms may be confused with poisonous look alikes, which can absolutely be harmful if consumed. 

    However, assuming you have the right species in-hand, magic truffles and mushrooms have a low toxicity, meaning that overdose is extremely unlikely. However, overconsumption can increase the risk of a negative reaction or physical illness (poisoning).

    But even without taking a high dose you may experience a bad trip with powerful feelings of distress, anxiety, paranoia, and frightening hallucinations.

    And there is also the possibility of psilocybin permanently altering your personality, your priorities, and how your brain works in unpredictable ways.

    Treating Hallucinogen Abuse

    If you were to develop an unhealthy dependence on magic truffles, a treatment professional would most likely develop a treatment plan that made use of counseling and behavioral therapies intended to investigate why you feel like you need to take the drugs. 

    These therapies would work towards resolving those feelings in a constructive and empowering way.

    For more information on treatment programs for hallucinogenic drug use, please contact Ark Behavioral Health today.

    Written by Ark Behavioral Health Editorial Team
    ©2024 Ark National Holdings, LLC. | All Rights Reserved.
    This page does not provide medical advice.
    Medically Reviewed by
    Kimberly Langdon M.D.
    on August 11, 2022
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