Is it time to get the Grandparents microdosing? While the idea may sound a bit out-there initially, studies suggest there are numerous health benefits of psilocybin for senior citizens.
Cognitive decline is a major worry for those approaching their golden years. One UK study suggests that cognitive decline more than doubled in adults 65 to 99 between 2009 and 2018. Cognitive decline is a strong predictor of dementia. While the increase in cognitive decline incidences may be a positive indictor that doctors are more adept at diagnosing cognitive decline earlier on, the number of adults living with dementia is expected to rise as the proportion of older adults grows. The number is expected to rise from 55 million adults living with dementia today, to 78 million in 2030 and 139 million in 2050. What if we could prevent this? Let’s take a look at some of the health benefits of psilocybin for senior citizens.
Prevent Aging Disorders
Mushrooms are currently being studied for their role in preventing cognitive decline because they increase neuroplasticity (the brain’s ability to change). The use of microdosing psilocybin mushrooms to prevent cognitive decline is a new and innovative breakthrough in the medical field. Way back, the scientific consensus was that we are born with a finite amount of brain cells (neurons), and as we grow up, these cells slowly die, and we can not create more (as oppossed to say, skin cells, which constantly generate more of). As a result, our brains and personality as adults are pretty much set and hardwired. This in itself contributes to a whole host of issues, but what if there was a way to change our minds?
In recent decades, the concept of neuroplasticity (the brain’s ability to reshape itself to adapt to the environment) and even neurogenesis (the body’s ability to create new nerve and brain cells) are becoming scientifically accepted. While there are many things that seem to promote neuroplasticity and neurogenenisis, such as exercise, mindfulness, getting enough sleep, and learning new skills, the factors involved in adult neurogenisis are still being studied.
Psilocybin can increase Neurogenesis
Studies on mice have suggested that low doses of psilocybin can increase neurogenesis (growth of new nerve cells) in brain regions other than the hippocampus. People who want to use psilocybin mushrooms to prevent aging disorders should start by taking small doses of the substance. Microdosing is the practice of regularly taking small doses of a drug, such as psilocybin, LSD, or ketamine. The benefits of microdosing are often overlooked because of the negative stigma associated with psychedelics in society.
The idea behind microdosing is that it provides more sustainable relief from symptoms of depression and anxiety without psychedelic experiences induced by higher doses that may not be suitable for everyone. Thus, older adults can regularly take a minimal dose to increase their neuroplasticity, without interference with their daily routine. This type of practice is practically useful for those who are still working, want to take mushrooms as a precaution rather than treating an existing condition, or are afraid of the effects of a high-dose mushroom trip.