Microdosing is the practice of taking small amounts of a drug which allows a user to benefit from the physiological benefits but while minimising the possible undesirable side effects.
Microdosing has in recent years become very popular within the psychedelic community.
Practitioners generally take sub-halluconengic doses of either LSD or magic mushrooms.
People who microdose are advised to not take a dose every day. Instead, they are advised to take one dose and then not another until 3 days later. This helps in not allowing the person to build up a tolerance. This practice also stops people experiencing day two left over effects.
Another tip for users is to journal their experience and note how their body reacts to the dosage.
What are the benefits of microdosing?
There are a variety of supposed benefits to microdosing. One of the key ones is to help with reducing anxiety within a person. Another possible benefit is the increase in creativity that it can provide.
Other users have used microdosing as a way to treat their depression. Other users have described an increase in focus, reduced stress, less mood swings and an improved outlook on life.
What is the risk of microdosing?
While many people report the benefits listed above, others have reported the total opposite with less focus, increased anxiety, worse mood and less energy.
Further to this, those who suffer with mental health issues such as bipolar disorder or schizophrenia may find the practice overstimulating.
Research has suggested that microdosing LSD can come with health risks. One possible side effect is that it can cause issues with a person’s heart. There is also some evidence that a person may build up a tolerance to microdosing LSD.
One of the main risks associated with microdosing remains the legality with both LSD and magic mushrooms (psilocybin) being illegal in most nations.
What do the studies say?
A 2020 study by Imperial College London, one of the leaders in psychedelic research, found that the reported benefits from microdosing could be due to the placebo effect. Placebos can be extraordinarily strong, working sometimes up to 60% in patients.
A more recent study examining the benefits of microdosing LSD found that over a period of six weeks there was little benefit. The study did cause four participants to exit the study early because of increased anxiety. However, during the study there were increases in creativity, happiness, energy, irritability, and wellness.
Further research is needed to examine whether there is a definite benefit for one person to microdose either psilocybin or LSD.