The term "Micro-dose" was coined in 2011 by Dr James Fadiman in the release of his book The Psychedelic Explorers Guide (which we highly recommend to anyone with interest in psychedelics). He Defined it as approximately 1/10th of a hallucinogenic dose (between 100mg and 250mg for Psilocybin Mushrooms)(between 7-15ug for LSD) and after years of self-funded research developed "The Fadiman Protocol" - A 1 day on 2 day off microdose protocol that is widely used.
Fadiman's research also suggested that dosing below the threshold of intoxication has the potential for nootropic benefits similar to those of a Macro-dose. Taking minuscule amounts of Psilocybin may improve both convergent and divergent thinking, resulting in improved cognitive function, flexibility, creativity, and problem solving.
Studies at the University of Bergen found that the respondents reported mostly positive effects after Micro-dosing, including improved mood, cognition, and creativity. Furthermore, these effects often served to counteract symptoms especially from conditions of anxiety and depression. While the preliminary results of studies already conducted are promising for the safety and efficacy of Micro-dosing in both improving general well-being and the treatment of many psychological conditions, wider trials with larger sample sizes are needed to completely understand the benefits and risks of Micro-dosing.
You may be able to participate in one of these trials! Click here for a list of ongoing and planned psilocybin clinical trials. We also encourage all microdose users to anonymously submit any data that they choose about their microdosing schedule and its effects on them here - https://microdose.me - for future researchers to analyze!
So how does it feel to Microdose?
1-2 hours after ingesting a micro-dose some subjects report noticing an increase in creativity and a more positive mood/outlook. Many users also find improved focus and energy level. It can mitigate the symptoms of depression, anxiety, and PTSD for some patients, however has also been reported to induce anxiety in others. Many purport its ability to increase empathy and 'sociability' as well, acting in a similar fashion to having a drink as social lubricant.
The first time you microdose you may feel slightly giddy or intoxicated, however the body quickly builds tolerance to Psilocybin, and noticeable psychotropic effects are not usually felt after the first dose. Microdosing offers the neurologic and psychologic of psilocybin, without intoxication. You should not have to alter your daily routine in order to microdose!
How Often Should I Microdose?
The most common microdosing protocol is called the "Fadiman Protocol" and dictates that a microdose should be taken once every 3 days. This protocol is based on established science regarding psilocybin's rate of metabolism, and allows you to get the best value out of your microdose purchase.
For the vast majority of individuals, Psilocybin will be 95% metabolized and excreted within 3 days of consumption. This means that during day 2 of the Fadiman protocol you still experience the neurological benefits of psilocybin, and day 3 serves as a "control" allowing you to better quantify the changes you feel when microdosing.
Other protocols that you might like to consider:
Paul Stamets, a well known mycologist advises users to microdose four days continuously and then take three days off. He’s also famous for his neurogenesis stack: by adding lion’s mane and Niacin to psilocybin mushrooms the neurological benefits (like neurogenesis, a hyperconneced brain state, etc) are compounded..
Another popular protocol among the microdosing community is day on, day off alternation, with longer breaks every 2-3 months.
How do I know Microdosing is working?
Since a microdose is meant to be non-psychoactive it is difficult to measure its effects without being very conscious of yourself. Some self-reflection is required to understand your improvements. You can track the effects with this ‘Check Yourself’ checklist. Most likely, you won’t be affected in all areas, but it’s important to take a comprehensive review of the effects. Here are 7 areas to track:
Mental: Notice the thoughts running through your mind. Are they the same as usual, or different in nature? Are you having more or fewer thoughts than usual? In general, is your mind more clear or more cluttered?
Creative: Are you finding new qualities in things, like stories in objects? Do you find your mind wandering in directions it doesn’t usually? Are you getting more ideas than usual? Do solutions to problems come more easily?
Emotional: Do your feelings take on any different qualities than before? Are there more or fewer feelings experienced than usual? How quickly do you process them before reaching a resolution and moving on? Is sex better, or a different quality?
Social: How are you expressing your thoughts and feelings? Are there any changes in the pacing, tone, or nature of your speech? What about your facial expressions? Do you smile more or less? What frequency do you agree or disagree with someone in conversation? Do you talk differently with your coworkers, spouse, friends and family? The barista at the local coffee shop?
Body: Take a look at how aware (or not aware) you are of your body. Now zoom in on the body by closing your eyes and taking a few deep breaths. Slow your mind and place your full attention on any sensations in your body. Do you notice anything?
Capabilities: Notice if you’re more able to complete certain tasks than usual. This might manifest as changes in attention span, physical/visual acuity, verbal fluidity, problem solving ability, empathy, different areas of awareness, and so on.
Outlook: Are you more positive or negative? More optimistic or pessimistic? More or less skeptical? More fearful and guarded, or open to possibilities Feelings of oneness, universality, truth, connectedness, love, or peace are also in this area.
A great resource for systematized tracking is Odin, microdosing journal. It is designed in such a way that allows you to track all the areas mentioned above, fast and easy through a ranking system. At the end of the day you have a clear image of how your day fluctuated on all the aforementioned areas on one page. Systematic tracking, of how microdosing impacts various aspects of your life, will reveal taught or emotional patterns that you might not have been aware of. This would be the best starting point to improve your life and /or optimize your microdosing journey either by introducing some other beneficial supplements or new habits.
Should I microdose mushrooms or LSD?
Microdosing one or the other will be a personal preference and it will depend on your goals. While microdosing with either substance will have different effects for everyone, there are common traits attributed to microdosing LSD vs microdosing mushrooms.
It will be up to you to try both and see how it feels for you.
When microdosing mushrooms, there will be a lot more emotional volatility, unprocessed things coming up to the surface. But if your goals are personal growth, connection to self and others, or creativity then this might be the right thing for you. We all know that it takes vulnerability and emotional expression to really, fully grow into ourselves and into our personal power.
On the other handm, when microdosing LSD you might feel a boost in physical energy, sometimes to the point of needing to go out for a run or walk. With LSD, if you prepare your set and setting right you can easily enter the flow states where you lose track of time and you are fully immersed into the task at hand.
As we mentioned, it will take a bit of personal experimentation to find what jives with you. For starters, you can try either our LSD microdose or our mushrooms kits. Additionally, check out the micro-dosing resources linked below, and do not hesitate to contact us if you still have questions about psilocybin mushroom or LSD microdosing!