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Episode 14: Mushroom Revival | The Mushroom Comeback with Alex Dorr

Posted by Manoj Perumal on

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About This Episode

Mushroom Revival | The Mushroom Comeback with Alex Dorr

In this episode of Discover with Dr. Dan | Proactive Health, Dr. Dan meets with special guest, Alex Dorr. They discuss everything about mushrooms, including how they benefit human health. Alex has a degree in mycology and plenty of years and experience studying fungi. Listen to the full podcast below to learn more about Alex’s work. 

The Shroom Boom of Fungi  

Alex Dorr has spent several years researching fungi and how it has the potential to greatly affect human life and health. Having a background in mycology, Alex has created the company, Mushroom Revival Inc, with the intent to enhance the lives of their consumers with organic mushroom properties. Alex mentions that the first evidence of humans consuming mushrooms was found in Spain where spores were discovered in ancient teeth, dated to 17,000 BC. Otzi, Europe’s oldest naturally preserved mummy, is believed to have been using two different types of mushrooms at the time of his death. Being used for food and medicinal purposes, it is also evident that mushrooms were somewhat ceremonial to ancient humans. The modern-day “shroom boom” taking place across the globe is just making its way to the United States. As Alex says, “Certain countries are mycophobic and certain countries are mycophillic. So, if you grow up in a lot of Asian countries or Eastern Europe, most likely you’ve gone mushroom hunting with your grandpa.” Alex hopes that in the near future, mushroom use will be more widely accepted in the United States, revolutionizing healthcare even further.  

Developing a Consistent Product

Following the “green rush,” many different companies started popping up on the mushroom supplement market. Mushroom Revival Inc sets themselves apart from the competition through the development of their consistency standard as well as their full product transparency. Alex mentions that there are multiple steps his company takes to ensure tincture consistency and standardization. The first is to know the amounts of bioactive compounds in each supplement. The next is to pick a commercial strain and to follow the same exact parameters with each production process, such as consistency in pH levels, growing in the same environment, and keeping the space at the same humidity. Ultimately, it’s the growing conditions that create mushroom consistency.  

Transparency is extremely important to Alex, as he feels this will help people in the US become more accustomed to mushroom use beyond cooking and general knowledge. He hopes that people will start to incorporate these bioactive compounds into their daily lives as they see the benefits procure. “There’s just a lot of fillers, a lot of mislabeling. So we want to be as transparent as possible.”

Magic Mushrooms and Their Misconceptions

In recent years, the usefulness of psilocybe cubensis, otherwise known as magic mushrooms, has come to the forefront of healthful discussions. Being traditionally known for its psychedelic properties, Alex believes that there is a huge misconception about how useful this fungi really is. These mushrooms contain active compounds called psilocybin and psilocin which can alter the human state to that of a more euphoric one when taken in larger doses. Alex mentions that seasoned meditators will say that the effects of psilocybin are similar to those of deep state meditation. Not only is this product used for altering the human state, but it is also used medicinally. When asked about the uses of magic mushrooms, Alex lists, “What’s really exciting, especially, there’s a lot of research with PTSD and addiction and all end of life care. Psilocybin is huge for cluster headaches.” He goes on to say, “It’s exciting and I think it’s revolutionary for our health care industry.” Researchers suggest that there are over five million different species of fungi undiscovered on planet Earth and only 120,000 species have been identified thus far. The future looks promising for fungi research and discoveries for how it can help human health. 

To learn more about Alex’s work and the study of mycology, check out the Discover | Dr. Dan Proactive Health podcast episode below, and be sure to subscribe for new episodes each Tuesday.


Transcription

Dr. Dan Gubler: (00:09)

Welcome to Discover with Dr. Dan | The Proactive Health Podcast, a podcast sponsored by Brilliant, an innovative proactive wellness company. Brilliant helps people to live a healthier and happier life by discovering and using bioactive natural ingredients to formulate products that help them discover and unleash their innate brilliance. See feelbrilliant.com for more information. We’re delighted on this episode to have Alex Dorr. Alex is a founder and CEO of Mushroom Revival Inc. He resides in Austin, Texas with his loving partner, Lera Niemackl, who co-hosts the mushroom revival podcast with him. After turning to mushrooms to support the hardships of depression, anxiety, and Lyme disease, Alex got his degree in mycology and is the author of the book, Mycoremediation Handbook: a Grassroots Guide to Growing Mushrooms and Cleaning Up Toxic Waste with Fungi, published in 2017. He led the growth of the largest and first certified organic cordyceps militaris mushroom farm in the Americas. He’s an international educator and researcher on mycology, teaching and conducting research all around the world in places such as China, Peru, Ecuador, Costa Rica, Mexico, Canada, Jamaica, Vietnam, and more. Alex is absolutely obsessed with the power of mushrooms and has signed his life away to the bidding of the mushrooms. Welcome Alex. It’s sure great to have you.

Alex Dorr: (01:32)

Yeah, it’s an honor. I’m always excited to geek out about mushrooms and chat as long as I can.

Dr. Dan Gubler: (01:39)

Awesome. Well, I’m a big mushroom fan as well so I look forward to our discussion. So Alex, let’s start from the beginning. A lot of our listeners don’t really know fungi, mushrooms, both. Are they interchangeable? Tell us about that.

Alex Dorr: (01:53)

Yeah, these are great questions. And especially for people living in the United States, for the most part, our culture is really mycophobic. So scared of mushrooms, don’t have a rich understanding of the simple questions. What are fungi? What are mushrooms? To put it simply all mushrooms are fungi, but not all fungi are mushrooms. Mushrooms are technically the fruiting body of fungi. So you can think of it like an apple on an apple tree or a tomato on a tomato plant. It’s the fruit responsible for dispersing spores or seeds for the whole organism. So fungi are classified as a kingdom or queendom, just like there’s Animalia for example, that we’re a part of, and we’ve only discovered such a small fraction of fungi. So we discovered approximately 120,000 different species of fungi and we estimate there’s over 5 million species left undiscovered in the world.

Alex Dorr: (03:00)

So this is just the tip of the iceberg. And out of those 120,000 species of fungi, we’ve only, only 14,000 of those are mushrooms. So really, mushrooms are such a small portion of fungi and the wide portion, they include molds and yeasts, things that are in your bread and your beer, things that you consume on a daily basis and don’t think, “I’m consuming fungi right now.” Right? So and just to give a tiny, brief summary of a life cycle of a typical mushroom, so you can think of a cap n’ stem mushroom, like the one you find at a grocery store or the emoji on your phone, there are spores or seeds underneath the mushroom cap in bills or pores or other areas. And they shoot out and their main purpose is just spreading DNA, right, to produce more mushrooms.

Alex Dorr: (04:01)

And so they float in the air and they land and each spore carries half the genetic DNA to be able to make a mushroom. So they need two spores to come together, to fuse, to make my psyllium, which is the roots of the mushroom. And they consume organic matter in the soil and they make a mushroom sometimes. Sometimes not and they start that cycle over again. And some mushrooms can produce up to a billion spores a day. And so they’re constantly everywhere. They’re on our clothes, they’re in our hair, we’re breathing them. We’re breathing up to one to ten spores, every breath that we take, depending on where you are, and when we’re walking on the soil, they’re kind of the humble stewards underground, right? And so we don’t really see them, but they’re doing them, they’re working their magic underneath the soil. So in each cubic inch of soil, in some areas, you get up to eight miles of this mycelium, this roots of these mushrooms growing in our soils, creating this healthy mycobiome in our environments and creating more biodiversity and more abundance in our planet.

Dr. Dan Gubler: (05:20)

Wow. So you’ve talked a lot about the ubiquitous nature of mushrooms and hinted a little bit on their importance in the environment. Let’s now talk about mushrooms and their traditional uses, both medicinal uses and otherwise.

Alex Dorr: (05:41)

To answer that question, I think we need to go further back, right, on how did mushrooms get here and how did fungi get here on this planet to begin with? And they’re one of the most extremophile organisms on the planet, right? So they can survive in really extreme environments. Dozens and dozens of mushrooms had been found underneath the ocean hibernating for tens of millions of years, right? Perfectly viable.There’s been dozens found in Antarctica in the snow and ice, dozens in Chernobyl and super radioactive environments. They can survive in space and other, just super extreme environments. And they’ve been on planet Earth. The oldest fossil that we’ve found is a billion years old. So they’d been here a while, right? They’re the OG organisms of terrestrial life. And for that, and because they’re so adaptable to many different environments, they’re releasing lot of a huge array of compounds and some are beneficial to humans.

Alex Dorr: (06:50)

And some we can use in other different uses that I’ll get into. But so, 700 million years ago, we get the first symbiosis. We get lichen. You probably see it on park benches and on trees, this symbiotic relationship between a photosynthetic organism and a fungi. So that is the beginnings of early plant life that we see today. So if you’re walking outside, you see trees, you see plants, you’re eating your kale salad. That is, the ancestor of that kale or those trees is fungi, right? And even us are brothers, sisters, friends, we’re just, the descendant of fungi and this relationship. So around 500 million years, we get early plants. And with those plants, we get the fungal relationship with the roots and because we get insects starting to inhabit the earth 420 million years ago, they start nibbling at these plant roots, the fungi have to retaliate and create this array of compounds, right? And some of them are amphetamines, psilocybin, some drug molecules that have had a great influence on human society, right? And we’re seeing today a resurgence of psilocybin and in our cultures, but that is the beginning of fungi starting to release these crazy compounds. We had the first evidence of human-based mushroom, humans eating mushrooms around 17,000 BC, where we find a woman in Spain with mushroom spores in her teeth. And then we see mushroom art as far back as 5,000 BC. And we see cave paintings, we see statues, you start seeing it pop up all around the world, right? And almost a, it’s almost religious, right? It’s this deep ceremony, this almost looking up to mushrooms as gods, right?

Alex Dorr: (09:09)

And it’s not like, “I’m going to paint a pretty picture about mushrooms.” It’s really serious. This great devotion towards mushrooms. In third, in 3,300 years ago, we get Otzi the Iceman, the oldest naturally preserved human ever found. And this corpse was found with two different types of mushrooms that he was using, um, Birch polypore and tinder conk. So birch polypore, they suppose he was using for clearing intestinal parasites. And that tinder conk, they think he was carrying embers of a fire around. And this is in Siberia or the Swiss Alps. And so that was vital for his survival in this really harsh environments. So we see for thousands of years, humans are using mushrooms for their survival, for ceremony, for food. In 20 AD in China, we start to see written text of functional mushrooms being utilized in traditional Chinese herbalism, right?

Alex Dorr: (10:18)

So they start talking about all these different mushrooms from reishi, from different cordyceps species, in De Materia Medica. In the 20th century, we start to see some certain drugs being discovered and produced from, in 1928, the most famous is penicillin, right, from the penicillium fungi. In 1938, we get LSD, the famous drug derived from ergot fungus. In 1971, cyclosporine, a really famous immunosuppressant drug and pretty much everyone who’s gotten an organ transplant has probably been prescribed cyclosporine and that’s derived from Tolypocladium inflatum. And so we get all of these different, more advancements in the field, right? And now in 2021, we’re starting to see a shroom boom in the United States with functional mushrooms, right? For health, general health and wellness, and supporting the immune system, supporting energy, supporting brain function, things like that. But they’re also used, a lot for food, you get them in the grocery store, and then along with that, certain advancements in the food industry from faux meat, right? And making alternatives to beef, which is great, and even fungal dyes. So replacing chemical dyes with these fungal dyes in our food instead of yellow five or things like that. And then also bitter blockers. So replace, trying to replace our load of so much sugar in our diet, right? And replace these with fungal compounds.

Dr. Dan Gubler: (12:08)

Yeah. The fungal polysaccharides, really interesting. Yeah. I’ve formulated with some of those. That’s pretty amazing stuff.

Alex Dorr: (12:16)

Yeah. We’ll definitely get further into the fungal polysaccharides and building materials as well. So, packaging, clothing, burial death suits for decomposing dead bodies when we die. Even on space stations, right? To protect astronauts from space radiation. Batteries, pest control for mosquito. I mean, the list goes on and on and on. And they just seem to be, especially now, a huge bullseye of culture, right? From podcasts being done about mushrooms, news articles, websites, companies, movies, books, it’s really starting to blow up and create this shroom boom. So it’s really exciting that the list of what we can use fungi for is endless and they never cease to amaze me.

Dr. Dan Gubler: (13:16)

So you talked a little bit about mycophobia and that is certainly true. What do you think has caused a shift from severe mycophobia to now at first recognizing them to now broad acceptance in a lot of cases?

Alex Dorr: (13:32)

Yeah, and it’s not everywhere, right? So certain countries are mycophobic and certain countries are mycophillic. So, if you grow up in a lot of Asian countries or Eastern Europe, most likely you’ve gone mushroom hunting with your grandpa, or I mean, China, for example, has over 5,000 years of rich, rich history with mushrooms. So, those countries have tons of research and culture, and they’ve been using hundreds, if not thousands, of different types of mushrooms daily. In the United States, we’re just so new, right? It’s a new country. It’s a melting pot. And so we’re starting with a lot of new books, new movies, new podcasts, new companies coming out. The public is starting to realize that mushrooms are way more than magic mushrooms that make you trip out. But in mushrooms that you find on your pizza or mushrooms that’ll kill you, right? And we can make all these crazy advancements to our society with the help of fungi and mushrooms. So we just have to have some more podcast episodes and more people spreading the spores of how awesome mushrooms are.

Dr. Dan Gubler: (14:55)

Yeah. That’s amazing. Health education is huge in all areas obviously, but mushrooms, very important. So Alex, there’s a lot of mushroom supplement companies around. And one of those, you have one, great products. Why would you need to take a mushroom supplement product versus eating mushrooms, forging, finding mushrooms from your local area that are beautiful, grown in fertile soil, going to a specialty grocery store where you can get really nice high quality mushrooms? Why not just get those in your diet?

Alex Dorr: (15:29)

Totally. So coming from the anatomy of a mushroom, mushrooms are primarily made of chitin and they have a lot of times these thick chitin walls. And chitin is the same material as say, shrimp or lobster shell. And it’s one of the heartiest materials on earth and our stomach doesn’t do a great job of digesting it. So it’s really important to cook our mushrooms, right? And so if you see mushrooms in a salad bar raw, I would highly advise you not to eat them and only cook them, right, to break down those chitin walls and for functional mushrooms, a lot of which you can’t find at the grocery store. Because they’re so hearty, right? They’re these conks that you find on trees and it’s kind of impossible to cook them, right? So you have to rely on other methods of consumption, whether it be, we focus on tinctures.

Alex Dorr: (16:24)

So relying on alcohol and hot water to extract these beneficial compounds, hiding in these chitin walls, right? And so we need to do a double extraction process to break these chitin walls down and extract both the alcohol-soluble and the water-soluble compounds. It’s just cooking at home. You’re going to get half the compounds you need in just that water that is cooking in, but you’re not getting, you’re more likely not going to get a lot of the alcohol soluble compounds. You might get some, but it won’t be as great of an extraction and you won’t find a lot of the species like reishi, for example, or chaga. You’re not likely to cook with those as you would shiitake or maitake. So they might offer some nutrition elements but for supporting your health on more of a supplement level, you want to go for a supplement.

Dr. Dan Gubler: (17:23)

Great. So when it comes to tinctures, people in the supplement industry are well versed in tincture. So are consumers. One other thing in the supplement industry that some people are saying is that tinctures aren’t quite as stable with the organic compounds floating around in solution versus a powder. What are your thoughts there?

Alex Dorr: (17:42)

Yeah. So tinctures have always worked with me and it’s definitely more bioavailable than a powder, for example. And it totally depends, right? Of how you extract it, how much is in the tincture versus the powder and what exactly is in the powder. Some companies just blend up mushrooms and they don’t actually extract it. And so you put the powder in your smoothie and your body’s working really hard to break down that chitin, and so it’s not really bioavailable. The benefit of a tincture is that you can have sublingual bioavailability, which you can absorb under some glands in your tongue to bypass your liver and have a faster absorption of these compounds. So, but again, it’s all what you like, right? So trying not to have, trying to have as little barriers of entry to this as possible. So if you already make a smoothie and you already work with powders, throw them in. If you already take a handful of capsules every morning, try adding another capsule to that. If you already take tinctures, right, and you like the taste of a lot of the herbs and that experience, try a tincture, right? If you want that bioavailability or a mix. So it totally depends. It’s totally up to you and the company of how they extract, how potent it is and how much bang for your buck are you really getting.

Dr. Dan Gubler: (19:22)

Nice. So, in our bio, our listeners heard that you have done a lot with cordyceps militaris. Tell us a little bit about cordyceps militaris, how it’s grown, and why it’s important to human health.

Alex Dorr: (19:36)

Sure. Cordyceps militaris is probably my favorite mushroom and it’s in a class of mushrooms called cordyceps. And that’s in a class of fungi called entomopathogenic fungi, which just means it’s a fancy word for fungi that grow in insects. And it sounds like a horror story and it’s totally out of a Sci-Fi movie and you can watch videos on planet earth of cordyceps taking over an ant and popping out of its head. Cordyceps militaris grows on moth larva. And it grows all around the world and it’s bright orange. They look like Cheetos. They’re really crazy. And a lot of athletes have used them for thousands of years for supporting energy and endurance and stamina and things of that nature. So cordyceps had been revolutionary for me, just running my own business and being super active of keeping my energy levels up. And it’s an adaptogen.

Alex Dorr: (20:38)

So it helps support occasional stress, right? And adaptogens are classes of herbs or mushrooms that help support that occasional stress that we all have daily. And so that’s super important as opposed to a coffee, which is great. I love coffee. I drink it a lot, but you get that afternoon crash. And it actually is depleting over time whereas cordyceps, it actually builds your system, right? And it works holistically to balance your system as opposed to drain it in the long run. So that’s some of the reasons why I love cordyceps. A lot of people are a little afraid that it grows on bugs. We built the largest and only certified organic cordyceps militaris mushroom farm in the Americas. And our whole process is vegan.

Alex Dorr: (21:37)

So it grows on rice and sometimes wheat and we add some other nutrients in there. And we grew it in jars and bins, a ton of different methods, totally bug free. We developed a formula, a recipe to not use bugs. So that was good in marketing. Obviously people don’t want to consume bugs in our culture where we’re also bug phobic. And you still get not only the same amount of compounds, but even more. There was a study done comparing both wild harvested versus artificially cultivated on rice. And they found that the artificially cultivated actually had higher amounts of cordycepin and pentostatin, which are two compounds in cordyceps, compared to the wild growing on these bugs. So cordyceps are a lot of fun and it’s a new mushroom, right? It’s very new to the US, there’s not a lot of people growing it and so it’s really exciting to work with that super food and to integrate in daily life.

Dr. Dan Gubler: (22:53)

And that’s interesting, you mentioned the bioactive compound composition, because I think that’s one thing and some scientists go back and forth in the literature, right? Of course that’s militaris, cordyceps sinensis, which is really hard to actually culture. We can talk about that and then like reishi mushroom, the triterpenes saponins. There’s always the debate – natural, forged in the harvest naturally versus grown organically. And so that’s interesting to hear your comments there.

Alex Dorr: (23:24)

Yeah. And I’ll talk a little bit about the difference between ophiocordyceps sinensis and cordyceps militaris a little bit. Ophiocordyceps sinensis is a mushroom. It’s similar as I think it’s like a cousin to militaris, right? It grows in Tibet and in the Himalayas. It grows on these moth or these caterpillars basically and pops out of their head and it grows up to 15,000 feet above sea level. It’s really high up there and they are worth their weight in gold. And so they’re over harvested and only a couple of farms today in the last year, the last couple of years have figured out how to grow it, but it’s very hush hush in China. They haven’t released obviously their techniques how to grow it. From up to now, people had only grown the mycelium, so the roots of that mushroom. And so it’s, it’s a lot less potent than mycelium. It has a lot less of those active compounds, notably like cordycepin is the main cordyceps molecule that people look for in their products. And so that’s significantly less in the mycelium, but it’s just, I feel like, a stepping stone until we figure out how to grow the actual mushrooms. So and then ganoderma. So reishi has these triterpenes and so the triterpenes are really high, they’re really high in the fruiting bodies, the actual mushrooms. But in the mycelium, the roots of the mushrooms, they’re non-detectable. And these are the compounds that we’re looking for, for reishi. And they’re known for that like bitter taste. And when you take a reishi supplement, it should be very bitter, if it’s not, you should be a little worried, right?

Alex Dorr: (25:21)

It’s probably because it has low levels of these triterpenes these ganoderic acids. We’re actually one of the first mushroom companies ever to have our lab results posted on our cartons, just with a QR code. And so for our ratio, we have all the ganoderic acids lined up from A to G and we’re the first company that I know of to list those on our product because we want to be transparent. And for the consumer, it can go over people’s heads, but there’s a lot of fluff out there. Especially, not only the mushroom world, but the supplement industry. There’s just a lot of fillers, a lot of fluff, a lot of mislabeling. So we want to be as transparent as possible, right? And show the active compounds and really, how potent is this? How much bang for my buck am I getting?

Dr. Dan Gubler: (26:17)

That’s amazing. Transparency is becoming a big thing in the supplement industry. But it’s one thing to say it and espouse it theoretically, it’s another thing to do it. So that’s really important. You mentioned ganoderic acids. How do you make sure that the standardization, a lot of people don’t understand standardization in the supplement industry, right? And you might grab a plant or a fungi that has a hundred milligrams of a beneficial ingredient X, and then you pick it again or harvest it again, and now it has 60 milligrams of ingredient X. How do you go about, in supplementation and even healthy eating, making sure that you’re getting a standardized amount of these amazing bioactive compounds from fungi?

Alex Dorr: (27:01)

Yeah. I mean, it starts with actually posting them. Actually knowing the amounts, first of all. So having those lab results available is super important just as a starting point of, “Okay, this is what I’m consuming on a daily basis or per serving.” And then it goes in the production process of picking your strain, right? A nice commercial strain and then picking the same substrate, the same temperatures, the same growing environment, humidity, pH, et cetera. And then in the extraction process of using the same exact parameters. And so part of the CGMP compliance procedures for a lot of these manufacturers, right, is that they have to, to the dot, describe their whole process and then repeat it over and over again, the same exact way, right? The same exact temperature, pH time, et cetera. So that helps with standardization of these molecules.

Dr. Dan Gubler: (28:07)

Okay. So it’s the growing conditions that you standardized to make sure you get the bioactive amounts rather than setting a threshold of 10 milligrams of ganoderic acid A.

Alex Dorr: (28:19)

Yeah. It’s growing conditions and extraction. And so we try to keep a full spectrum product and we don’t extract single compounds and then add them back in. So we’re not, we don’t have an extract of cordycepin, of pure cordycepin, now we’re adding to our products. We try to mimic our growing techniques and our extraction techniques to meet a certain threshold of a certain percentage of beta-glucans or a certain percentage of cordycepin. And that’s our minimum, right? So we won’t make a product if it’s below that threshold of a certain level of compounds. And we want to make that transparent for the consumer as well. So when they buy their products, if it’s below that threshold, they won’t buy it. And they’re knowing when they’re looking around at competitors, do they even list that those lab results, right? And if they don’t, that’s a red flag or it should be and they should, if they’re looking for, if they have a tincture and they’re looking for a powder or a powder to a capsule, they should compare those lab results of, “Okay, I’m getting this many milligrams of, or percentage of this compound and I should get probably the same if I switch over.”

Dr. Dan Gubler: (29:39)

Oh, that’s awesome. Yeah, transparency is huge. That’s what we do at Brilliant Science as well. We do testing not only outsource, but we test three different times in our lab as well. So that’s amazing. A lot of people are talking about magic mushrooms. It’s a hot topic now. A lot of people, a lot of our listeners have heard it, but they don’t really know too much about it. What is, what is magic mushrooms? This area, this craze, what is it?

Alex Dorr: (30:07)

Yeah, it most notably is psilocybe cubensis and that’s just a species of fungi that is known as the magic mushroom, but there’s many different subspecies that contain psilocybin or psilocin. And so, and there’s other compounds as well that we’re discovering. Baeocystin, norbaeocystin and more, just, and we’re on the curtails of the cannabis industry, right? So it first started as CBD and THC, right? And then we’re finding all these different compounds that have this entourage effect that go into this whole experience. And it’s really taking off in most notably, Canada, surprisingly. They’re, a little more lenient on their laws and progressive, like they legalized cannabis all in one day across the country, whereas we’re a little far behind and I’m tuning in from Austin, Texas. Right now in Texas, it’s great in all areas, but drug reform. And so we’re going to be one of the last states to switch our laws unless it’s done on a country-wide basis, but we’re starting to see different cities and states start to decriminalize. And so that’s really exciting. I’ve had my own experiences with psilocybin, with microdosing and macrodosing. It’s a really potent functional ingredient. I mean, it has changed my life in a huge way. I’m trying to pick my words to not get in trouble with the FDA, but it has been crucial for me. It feels like 10 years of therapy packed in five hours every time. And just a level of clarity I feel afterwards. And there’s a lot of times when I microdose or even macrodose where I get this breath of fresh air and this embodiment just feeling in my body, in the here and now that it’s like, “Where have I been?”

Alex Dorr: (32:22)

And here, I’m home, this real sense of being at home. And there’s nowhere else I need to be. There’s nothing else I should be thinking about, nothing else I should be feeling, no where to go, nothing do, but be here now. And I get into some states with like meditation, yoga, breath work, things like that. But it’s an, almost an instant portal with psilocybin, where a lot of seasoned meditators will say this of, it’s almost the exact same state as a really deep states of meditation, but without the 10 years of grueling of trying to come back to the present. So it’s almost a fast pass to presence. And that’s what’s really exciting, especially, there’s a lot of research with PTSD and addiction and all end of life care. Psilocybin is huge for cluster headaches. So a lot of companies are coming in. It’s the new green rush. It’s exciting and I think it’s revolutionary for our health care industry or it’s about to, so I’m really excited for it.

Dr. Dan Gubler: (33:47)

Hmm. So where do you think the future of mushrooms is going? Where we’ve talked a lot about a really cool fungi and mushrooms, they’re benefiting human health, some new areas, as you’re saying with magic mushrooms, where do you think the future of mushrooms is going in the next one to five years?

Alex Dorr: (34:04)

Yeah. So when I was talking about the uses of fungi, the list goes on and on and on. And I think we’re going to discover new uses every day. And with this kind of new cultural revolution of this shroom boom happening, there’s going to be new people coming on board every day with different backgrounds, right? In chemical engineering, in fashion, in food, in pest control and whatever different area and add their little spice, right? And create new innovative products, create new inventions, create ways that we can have a symbiosis with fungi. And just going back to how many species of fungi we’ve discovered, it’s 120,000 of the 5 million, right? So there’s all these fungi that we haven’t even discovered yet that can have huge implications to our society that we don’t even know about yet. And so there’s teams of researchers all around the world, just going in extreme environments and trying to classify new species and do a whole chemical analysis of, “Okay, what are all the new compounds in here?” And trying to go into the Amazon rainforest before it gets clear cut, or these really dire environments and trying to capture as much DNA and new species as possible so we can partner with them. To make new innovations that are going to solve our world’s problems.

Dr. Dan Gubler: (35:45)

Wow. So this has been really exciting, Alex. It’s sure been a delight talking with you. The things you’ve shared have been eye opening, I’m sure, to our listeners. As you said, mushrooms and fungi are a new thing, relatively new thing here in the US. And so I’m sure this has really enlightened our listeners. Sure appreciate you, Alex, for being on and wish you the best down there in Austin, Texas. Hopefully you’re warm now.

Alex Dorr: (36:08)

Thanks! I really appreciate it and as you said in the beginning, we have a whole mushroom podcast called The Mushroom Revival podcast. If anyone is looking to do a deeper dive into the fungal world, definitely check us out at mushroomrevival.com. For your listeners I have a special code. If people are interested in trying functional mushrooms in their day-to-day life, use the code: DISCOVER. All capital, for 10% off your purchase. And please just reach out anytime. More than happy to talk about mushrooms with anyone anytime.

Dr. Dan Gubler: (36:43)

Awesome. Thanks Alex. Thanks to everyone for listening. Appreciate you for tuning in each week. And this is Dr. Dan signing off.

Dr. Dan Gubler: (37:10)

The information presented by guests in this podcast is their sole opinion and in no way represents the views of Discover with Dr. Dan | The Proactive Health Podcast or Brilliant. This podcast is for informational purposes only and does not replace professional medical care. Please consult with your medical doctor before making any changes in your lifestyle.

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