The fans from Super Mario play with them. Doctors look into them. Chefs all over the globe cook using them. They show up overnight, vanish in a flash and disappear without a trace of their presence. Students from all over the world are referred to as mycologists. currently, the fungal infection is being investigated as a potential cure for the cancer PTSD post-traumatic stress disorder, and other mental disorders.

, also known as toadstools are fleshy, spongy bodies of fungi that are found above ground on the soil or in a food source. They are separate from the world of plants in a distinct kingdom of their own, called Myceteae because they don’t contain chlorophyll as green plants do.

Without the photosynthesis process Certain mushrooms get nutrients through the breakdown of organic matter, or by consuming from plants that are higher in the plant kingdom. They are referred to as decomposers. Another type of plant attack is to kill them and eat their food, and is referred to as parasites. The poisonous and edible varieties are mycorrhizal and can be located on or near the tree roots like the pines, oaks and firs.

For humans, the mushrooms can be able to do three things: nourish heal, or even poison. Some are harmless. The three most sought-after varieties of this’meat of the world of vegetables include oysters as well as the morel and chanterelles.

They are widely used in dishes from China, Korea, Japan and India. In actual fact, China is the world’s largest producer , generating more than half of all the mushrooms consumed in the world. The majority of the edible mushrooms we find available in supermarkets has been produced commercially on farms. These include portobello, shiitake, and Enoki.

Eastern medicine, specifically conventional Chinese methods, have been using mushrooms for long periods of time. Within the U.S., studies were carried out in the early 1960s for ways to improve the immune system as well as reduce the growth of tumors using extracts from the field of cancer research.

They were also used in rituals by the indigenous peoples of Mesoamerica for many thousands of years. They were referred to as the ‘flesh of the gods’ by the Aztecs they were consumed during religious ceremonies of societies across the Americas. Cave paintings from Spain along with Algeria depict ritualized ingestion that dates to 9000 years ago. The issue was questioned by Christian authorities from both sides of Atlantic Psilocybin usage was repressed until Western psychotherapy was rediscovered following World War II.

An article published from Life Magazine titled “Seeking the Magic Mushroom” brought about the attention of America. In the next year an Swiss scientist, named Albert Hofman, identified psilocybin and psilocin as active components in the magical mushrooms. This led to the establishment of Harvard Psilocybin Project led by American psychologist Timothy Leary at Harvard University to research how the substance on humans.

In the next quarter century the quarter century that followed, 40,000 patients were treated with Psilocybin, as well as other hallucinogens, like LSD or mescaline. There were more than 1000 research articles written. After the government was aware of the growing subculture willing to embracing the practice of the internet, rules were put in place.

In 1970, the Nixon Administration began regulations, that include legislation known as the Controlled Substances Act of 1970. The law established five schedules that increased in intensity under which drugs were being classified. Psilocybin was placed in the strictest schedule I, along with cannabis and MDMA. Each was categorized as having an “high potential for abuse, no currently acceptable medical use and a lack of accepted safety.”

Return of the Magic Mushroom

The research was stopped for over 25 years, but it was only the last few years when research began for possible use in resolving or treating post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and anxiety-related issues. As of June 2014 whole or extracted mushrooms are being examined in 32 clinical trials that are registered with the U.S. National Institutes of Health to determine their impacts on a range of illnesses and conditions. A few of the diseases being treated include glaucoma, cancer the immune system and inflammatory bowel diseases.

The subject of debate concerns the usage of psilocybin as an organic chemical found in certain types of mushrooms. Its potential to aid those suffering from mental disorders like obsessive-compulsive disorder PTSD and an anxiety disorder are still being investigated. Psilocybin has been proven that it is effective at treating addiction issues to cigarettes and alcohol in some studies.

Although fungus has been a fascination for people over the years, it could finally be entering the new age where its healing abilities and undiscovered properties are now being discovered. The fungus may provide the answer to a long-forgotten secrets and illnesses.