Health Benefits Lions Mane Mushroom Plus Side Effects 2023
Hericium Erinaceus is an edible mushroom belonging to the tooth fungus group. Native to North America, Europe, and Asia, it can be identified by its long spines, occurrence on hardwoods, and tendency to grow a single clump of dangling spines. The fruit bodies can be harvested for culinary use.
Lion’s mane mushrooms have been investigated for their antioxidant and anti-inflammatory potential. Although more tests are needed, they are associated with positive health effects. Keep reading!
Lion’s mane mushrooms are also known as. Their scientific name is Hericium Erinaceus and they are characterized by their particular globe shape, covered by long, hairy spines that resemble the mane of a lion as they grow.
According to a publication in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, it is an ingredient widely used in the kitchens of the Asian continent, where it is valued for its nutritional properties. They are used both raw and cooked and in the form of tea. What are they for? What are the secondary effects? We will detail it below.
Benefits of lion’s mane mushrooms
Many of the benefits of lion’s mane mushrooms have been documented in the scientific literature. Specifically, they are attributed to antibiotic, antihypertensive, antidiabetic, neuroprotective, and anti-inflammatory properties. In addition, they are believed to have the potential as an adjuvant against a wide variety of diseases.
Two active compounds in the lion’s mane mushroom, hericenones, and erinacines, have been studied for their effects on brain health. Research reported in the International Journal of Medicinal Mushrooms determined that these substances help stimulate the growth of brain cells.
On the other hand, animal studies, such as one published in BioMed Research International, found that this natural supplement protects against Alzheimer’s disease since it reduces the symptoms of memory loss and neuronal damage caused by beta-amyloid plaques…
While human evidence is lacking to corroborate such effects, for now, the findings are promising. Through Phytotherapy Research, supplements of this mushroom helped improve mental functioning in patients who took 3 grams a day for 4 months.
Anxiety and depression
Both anxiety and depression require personalized treatment with mental health professionals. Still, supplements like lion’s mane mushroom extracts are being investigated as potential adjuncts to address these issues.
Regarding this, an animal study published in the International Journal of Molecular Sciences reported that this supplement has anti-inflammatory effects that help modulate neurotransmitters associated with depressive disorders. In addition, other findings indicate that it improves the functioning of the hippocampus, the region responsible for emotional responses.
In humans, the evidence is still insufficient. A small study in menopausal women found that those who ate cookies with mushroom extract for a month had less anxiety.
The extract from the lion’s mane mushroom appears to lower the risk of heart disease. In animal research reported in Mycobiology, this ingredient stimulated fat metabolism and lowered high triglycerides.
Likewise, a test-tube study determined that the substances contained in these extracts decrease the oxidation of cholesterol in the blood. Thus, the risk of atherosclerosis and serious cardiovascular events, such as myocardial infarction or stroke, is reduced. More evidence is required, but the findings are promising.
Natural supplements should not be a first-line treatment for dealing with diabetes. Still, some have exhibited the potential to lower blood glucose levels. For example, extracts from lion’s mane appear to block the activity of the enzyme alpha-glucosidase, which breaks down carbohydrates in the small intestine.
This, according to a study published in the International Journal of Medicinal Mushrooms, gives it antidiabetic properties. However, more tests are needed to verify these effects in humans.
Through Food & Function, it is reported that extracts of lion’s mane mushroom are useful for strengthening the functions of the immune system. In particular, they help reduce inflammation and oxidation, two factors that compromise immunity. They also stimulate the growth of beneficial intestinal bacteria.
The anti-inflammatory properties of the lion’s mane mushroom act positively on the digestive system, especially in the case of inflammatory bowel disease. A study in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology details that these supplements have antibacterial properties that improve digestion.
Among other things, they strengthen the gut microbiota, which reduces the risk of chronic diseases. In turn, they act as a preventive for stomach ulcers, according to experts from the Changchun University of Chinese Medicine.
Lion’s mane is also used in topical products. Its application on superficial wounds seems to help the healing process. In an animal study with neck wounds, external application of lion’s mane extract was associated with faster healing.
Oxidative stress and chronic inflammation are linked to the development of chronic non-communicable diseases, such as cancer, autoimmune disorders, and heart conditions.
Joint research in Molecular Medicine Reports states that extracts concentrated lion hair fungus antioxidants inhibit the effects of these processes, reducing the occurrence of diseases.
In fact, through Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine it was determined that Hericium Erinaceus has the fourth-highest antioxidant activity in a group of 14 fungi. Therefore, it is recommended as a source of these molecules.
Side effects of lion’s mane mushrooms
So far, lion’s mane mushrooms seem safe to most people. In Asia, they consume them in moderate amounts and no risks have been reported.
However, it is unknown whether derived supplements are safe and effective, given the lack of human studies. For now, they are not regulated like other food and pharmaceutical products. There is some concern among patients with allergies and asthma, as it is believed that it can make their symptoms worse. Therefore, it is best to avoid its consumption when suffering from these conditions. It is also not recommended in pregnant, lactating women or children. In case of having diagnosed diseases, it is best to consult the doctor.
Presentation of the lion’s mane mushrooms
In Asian cuisine, lion’s mane mushrooms are cooked until the outer layer is crisp. This prevents the taste from being bitter.
In the West, the supplements of this product are beginning to become popular. Right now they can be found in capsules, liquids, tablets, and powders.
Dosages vary and you need to follow the manufacturer’s instructions. It is not recommended to exceed its consumption, as this increases the risk of unwanted reactions.
What is there to remember about lion’s mane mushrooms?
Animal and test-tube research support many of the benefits attributed to lion’s mane mushrooms. However, more evidence is needed to support its use in humans. Therefore, extracts or supplements should not be a first-line treatment for diseases. In case of allergies or a history of asthma, it is suggested to avoid its consumption. It is also advisable to consult your doctor before taking this type of remedy, especially if you are taking other medications or if there is a previous diagnosis of conditions.
What is Lion’s Mane mushroom good for?
Research has found that lion’s mane may protect against dementia, reduce mild symptoms of anxiety and depression and help repair nerve damage. It also has strong anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and immune-boosting abilities and has been shown to lower the risk of heart disease, cancer, ulcers, and diabetes in animals
Is Lion’s Mane addictive?
A great study suggests that lion’s mane can help reduce symptoms of both anxiety and depression after just four weeks. Unlike traditional SSRIs and other anti-depressants or psychoactive drugs, there is no risk of addiction, tolerance withdrawal, or receptor down-regulation.
Does lion’s mane get you high?
While lion’s mane certainly has the capacity to provide consumers with an overall sense of well-being and enhanced energy over time, it is absolutely not psychoactive. There is no “high” or impairment associated with consuming lion’s mane in any of its various forms.
Does lion’s mane make you sleepy?
In short – no, lion’s mane mushroom will not make you sleepy. However, due to the noted benefits of anti-anxiety and possible improvements in sleep quality, it may be a good idea to take lion’s mane before bedtime as part of your unwinding routine!
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