4 Potential Health Benefits of Lion’s Mane

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Lion’s Mane has gained enormous popularity as a dietary supplement and culinary ingredient around the world. Let’s take a look at its reputed health benefits.

Lion’s mane, scientifically known as hericium erinaceus, is an edible mushroom that grows on hardwood trees (beech, walnut, maple, black walnut, birch, etc.), predominantly in forests across Asia, Europe, and North America.

It gets its name from the long, flowing, white spines on its body that resemble the fur on an adult male lion’s face.

Like many other mushrooms, lion’s mane has long been used in China, Japan, and other Asian nations for medicinal purposes, including enhancing general health and extending life.

Recently, due to its many claimed health benefits — which we’ll be looking at in this post — the fungus has gained enormous popularity as a dietary supplement and culinary ingredient within health and wellness communities around the world.

What Health Benefits Do Lion’s Mane Mushrooms Offer?

The effects of consuming lion’s mane on our health have not been thoroughly studied.

However, the limited data available from test-tube studies, animal-based research, and small clinical trials reveal lion’s mane is rich in a variety of bioactive compounds — including hericenones, erinacines, polysaccharides, alkaloids, lactones, steroids, and beta-glucan — which can provide many health and wellness benefits, including:

  1. Lion’s Mane Can Protect Against Alzheimer’s

Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive neurological condition that harms and kills brain cells, resulting in a gradual deterioration in cognitive ability that may be serious enough to interfere with day-to-day functioning.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention predict that by 2060, there will be about 14 million people in the U.S. living with Alzheimer’s, which is the leading cause of dementia. Currently, 6 million Americans are estimated to have the illness.

Lion’s mane mushrooms have two substances, hericenones and erinacines, which boost brain cell growth and shield the cells from Alzheimer’s disease-related harm.

In a 2020 study of persons over 50 with mild symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease, it was discovered that taking three 350-mg lion’s mane pills every day for 49 weeks dramatically improved their mental performance compared to a placebo.

  1. Lion’s Mane Mushrooms May Help to Reduce Anxiety and Depression

Several studies on lion’s mane antidepressant properties in people and animals demonstrate that these mushrooms can be a viable alternative to prescription antidepressants.

In a one-month study involving 30 women who reported experiencing anxiety and depression, it was found that those who consumed lion’s mane cookies daily felt less agitated and anxious, while those who took a placebo showed no change in their symptoms.

In another study, mice that were fed lion’s mane mushroom extract displayed lower levels of depression and anxiety-like behaviors.

Depression and other mental illnesses are more likely to develop when the tissue of the hippocampus (a part of the brain that processes memory and emotional responses) declines.

The hippocampus was restored by the lion’s mane extract, according to the study’s findings, and this improved the rodent’s mood.

  1. Lion’s Mane Mushrooms Can Improve Immune Function

Your body needs a strong immune system to protect it from diseases and infections.

Lion’s mane mushroom contains beta-glucans, a form of soluble fiber that studies have found is capable of enhancing natural killer cells‘ function. Natural killer cells eliminate diseased and infected cells – such as cancer cells – in their earliest stages to stop the spread of viruses and cancerous cells.

While killing is the main function of natural killer cells, these cells also release cytokines, which are messenger proteins that instruct other immune system cells to attack dangerous pathogens (bacteria, viruses, and parasites), keeping your body healthy.

Due to beta-glucans’ potential to strengthen the immune system, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has permitted products containing a minimum of 750 mg of the fiber to carry a health claim stating they may lower the risk of heart disease.

  1. Lion’s Mane May Reduce Inflammation

Chronic inflammation is linked to a range of life-threatening and incapacitating illnesses, including type-2 diabetes, cancer, cardiovascular disease, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s disease.

Powerful anti-inflammatory elements in lion’s mane, such as oligosaccharides, may help lessen the likelihood and severity of inflammatory disease.

One study revealed lion’s mane has the potential to inhibit adipose tissue inflammation, reducing the risk of obesity and the health issues linked to being overweight. In studies on animals, it was discovered that lion’s mane extract decreased inflammatory markers in rodents, which helped manage inflammatory bowel disease and stroke.

While additional research is needed to completely understand the health advantages of lion’s mane, the studies that have been done so far are encouraging. 

Integrating lion’s mane into your diet could be a simple yet effective way to improve your general health and well-being.

How Safe Are Lion’s Mane Mushrooms?

The mushrooms can be consumed fresh, cooked or as a dietary supplement in powders and capsules.

Most people can take lion’s mane mushrooms without any problems. However, some individuals might experience adverse reactions such as stomach pains, nausea, diarrhea, skin rashes, and swelling.

Before consuming lion’s mane frequently, it is important to speak with a healthcare provider, especially if you have underlying medical concerns, are taking medication, or are pregnant.

If lion’s mane is appropriate for you, the provider can advise you on the best dosage to take to reap its numerous health benefits.

Choose a Trusted Source to Grow Lion's Mane

With the potential benefits for your health and a delicious addition to recipes, would you like to have a regular fresh supply of this super-mushroom? Order Lion's Mane spore today from PNW Spore!

We are the top online retailer of spore syringes in North America, offering a huge selection of premium gourmet and medicinal mushroom spore syringes – including lion's mane, shiitake, reishi, morel, oysters, and more – that you can easily grow at home.

Choose your favorite mushroom spores and we'll deliver them right to your door. Order your lion's mane spore syringes from us and enjoy excellent service and free standard shipping on orders over $100.

PNW Spore, Co.
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