Feeding your brain mushrooms
Feeding your brain mushrooms can enhance cognitive function. And I don’t mean by putting extra mushrooms on your truffle pizza (which is a yummy recommendation, by the way) or the famous mushrooms from Amsterdam, but by having it in your coffee. Before I go into that, let’s take a few steps back into what cognitive function is and why we would want to enhance it.
According to Wikipedia, cognition is the mental action or process of acquiring knowledge and understanding through thought, experience, and senses. In other words, it is a mental state in which you are able to mobilise creative knowledge or get into a productive flow state and get work done. As Seth Godin wrote in his book Small is the New Big: “It is not about working hard, but hard work.” Increased cognitive function means your brain will stay in this desired state for a longer period of time. Therefore, we can achieve more and better results. Which brings us to the question: How can we get more of it?
Researchers found that cognitive function can be increased by music and meditation, among others. However, the most interesting way for cognitive enhancement is by eating your way to higher cognitive function. One way to do so is with nootropics. Nootropics are supplements, drugs or other substances that enhance cognitive function and creativity among others. Nootropics are also called smart drugs or cognitive enhancers. On the nootropics market there are many, many kinds available since every person reacts differently to the different nootropic substances. And no worries, the ones we discuss here are legal, they might be a little hard to come by as (online) availability depends on your country.
The last period has been quite hectic, juggling work, exercise, travel, social events, and the blog. Writing is something I enjoy but it does take me some time to get into the right state to actually produce output, it doesn’t come as easy as I want. Therefore, the idea of accelerating the process of getting into the right mental state sounds very appealing to me. The smart drug that I have been testing for the last few months is Four Sigmatic’s mushroom coffee. This product is, as the name already gives away, an instant coffee mixed with mushroom extracts. It comes in power sachets, that you can put in your favourite mug and just pour some hot water over it. It tastes like the average instant coffee, not offensive at all. My favourite time to drink it is in the morning, especially in the weekends, since that’s the time I like to write the most.
The active ingredients that are included in the substance are Arabica coffee, Siberian chaga mushroom and lion’s mane. I bought mine here.
- Arabica coffee is the provider of the caffeine in the mixture, something you’re probably familiar with.
- Siberian chaga mushroom balances the acidic effects of coffee, since it has high alkalizing effects.
- Lion’s mane is another kind of mushroom, known to enhance memory and concentration. And especially the latter, comes in quite useful. Perfect for all #careerlions out there.
How is this different from regular coffee you might wonder? To me personally, when I am drinking regular coffee, I never stop after having one cup. One cup leads to another and another. I’ll be four cups in before I know it. This results into caffeine rushes, but also crashes. It is not only that, I get shaky hands and start sweating at times. So, not really the effect I was going for. With the Four Sigmatic Mushroom Coffee I only drink one sachet, so one cup a day and still enjoy the alertness that I usually get from four cups of coffee. Because of the cordyceps in the mushrooms, less caffeine is required for the same effects. Not only do the mushroom extracts increase your cognitive function, it’s also anti-inflammatory and contains a lot of antioxidants. Of course these are my personal experiences and everyone has a different reaction to nootropics, therefore I am curious to know what your experiences are? Any recommendations for other smart drugs? Do tell in the comments below!