Psychedelic Mushrooms vs Functional Mushrooms: What are the Major Differences?
by Alex Heining on Nov 16, 2022
Talkin' about magic shrooms, huh? Wait till you hear about functional mushrooms.
When people hear the term "functional mushrooms," they often assume psychedelic mushrooms or magic shrooms are roped into that. After all, psychedelic mushrooms do deliver a certain, well... function. However, when it comes to psychedelic mushrooms vs functional mushrooms, the two are nowhere close to the same types of fungi. These two mushroom groups serve two totally different purposes, have different legalities to consider, and more. So, what are the differences?
Our Team at Troomy's made an in-depth explanation of both psychedelic and functional mushrooms to offer a bit of clarity.
Psychedelic Mushrooms vs Functional Mushrooms: The Main Difference
The main attribute to remember when trying to clear confusion surrounding functional and psychedelic mushrooms is that functional means "medicinal," while psychedelic means "hallucinogenic." In other words, functional mushrooms are known to offer therapeutic value and nutritional properties primarily. They don't contain constituents that cause any level of intoxication. By contrast, psychedelic mushrooms are primarily known for their ability to alter states of perception.
What are psychedelic mushrooms?
Psychedelic mushrooms go by quite a few different names, including magic mushrooms, magic shrooms, and boomers. These mushrooms contain hallucinogenic agents called psilocybin and psilocin, which produce effects that can be comparable to other hallucinogenic drugs like LSD. The mushrooms most often grow in subtropical or tropical regions, and they are specifically harvested by most cultures for their psychedelic effects.
Are psychedelic mushrooms legal?
Psychedelic mushrooms are not legal. In the United States, psilocybin is considered a Class I illegal substance, much the same as drugs like LSD or heroin. Further, many other countries have similar laws against the possession and use of psilocybin-containing mushrooms. According to the Controlled Substances Act, psilocybin has a high risk of abuse, serves no purpose medically, and comes along with risky mental and physical consequences.
Are there different types of psychedelic mushrooms?
While specific species of fungi are most commonly sought-after for psychedelic use, there are actually hundreds of mushrooms that fit into the category. There is a specific genus classification of mushrooms referred to as Psilocybe, but mushrooms containing psilocybin can be found in other geneses as well, including:
What are the effects of psychedelic mushrooms?
Psilocybin affects serotonin receptors and different neural regions in the brain that affect perception, mood, panic response, cognition, and arousal. Therefore, when psilocybin-containing mushrooms are ingested, this can cause a list of different effects. These effects usually start within 10 minutes of consumption but can take longer, and the effects can actually last for several days in some cases. Hallucinations are common—both auditory and visual, but other effects can include:
- Disengagement from the environment or surroundings
- Distorted thinking processes
- Lack of coordination and unusual physical sensations
- Confusion, paranoia, and alarming visual hallucinations
- Nausea and vomiting
- Dilated pupils
The overall effects of psilocybin can be highly unique to the individual and their mental state when the effects settle in. For example, if you're usually anxious, you may be more likely to have a negative or alarming hallucination. However, these experiences can also be related to the type of mushroom, how much psilocybin is consumed, and various other factors. Experiencing a "bad trip" with psychedelic mushrooms is highly possible, and the likelihood of consuming too much or the wrong type of mushroom is high.
While magic mushrooms are most known for illicit use, there has been a bit of research into how psilocybin may be beneficial for some usage cases therapeutically. For example, some studies indicate psilocybin may be useful for depression, but it is too early to make definitive claims.
What are functional mushrooms?
Functional mushrooms are simply types of mushrooms that have established medicinal or therapeutic value. These mushrooms do not contain psilocybin or generate altered perceptions or intoxication, but they do offer unique compounds beneficial for the human body in different ways. There are many types of functional mushrooms, and they can be found growing in different regions across the planet.
Are functional mushrooms legal?
Functional mushrooms are completely legal. These mushrooms don't have the ability to induce a psychedelic state, cause euphoria, or otherwise impede a person's ability to function. Therefore, the mushrooms are available for purchase in both whole forms at some health food stores and in supplement form, such as mushroom gummies made with functional mushroom extracts.
What are the different types of functional mushrooms?
Many, many types of mushrooms are considered functional because they are associated with so many health or therapeutic benefits. A few of the most common types of functional mushrooms in use today, include:
- Lion's mane
- Turkey Tail
What are the benefits of functional mushrooms?
Functional mushrooms have a long list of health benefits, and some mushrooms are better studied than others. Many of these fungi have well-documented uses throughout history for different ailments. For example, Reishi has been called the "mushroom of immortality" because it is thought to support stamina, give the immune system a boost, and even target bad cholesterol levels. Likewise, lion's mane is thought to be a great choice for supporting memory and mood, and cordyceps are said to fight fatigue.
While there is no way we could cover every benefit here, other potential benefits of functional mushrooms include:
- Reducing inflammation (lion's mane)
- Enhancing gut health (turkey tail)
- Stabilizing blood sugar (chaga)
- Aiding the heart (shiitake)
- Offering powerful antioxidant qualities (turkey tail)
- Reducing the growth of malignant cells (maitake)
- Boosting exercise performance (cordyceps)
- Deterring stress and supporting sleep (reishi)
Psychedelic Mushrooms vs Functional Mushrooms: A Final Word from Troomy
Psychedelic mushrooms may eventually have their place or "functions" therapeutically but for now, stick with truly functional mushrooms to support your wellness goals. At Troomy Nootropics, we make it easy to make functional mushrooms a part of your daily regimen with high-quality mushroom gummies. With formulas for support with 14 different mushroom species to formulas to help with sleep, focus, and more, our collection has something for everyone. Take a look at our collection to find your favorite Troomy mushroom supplement here.
Overall, it's no time to wait to get started with Troomy. Start finding your "True Me" today!