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Lion's Mane: 5 Reasons This Mushroom is a Brain Game-Changer!

Introduction


Lion's Mane mushroom, scientifically known as Hericium erinaceus, is a unique fungus revered for its potential neurological benefits. This mushroom, notable for its cascading, icicle-like appearance, has been a cornerstone in traditional medicine, particularly in Asia.


Large, white Lion's Mane mushroom with its distinctive cascading, icicle-like tendrils, resting on a wooden table.
Large lion's mane mushroom

Recent scientific studies have brought to light its neurogenic properties, suggesting that Lion's Mane mushroom may stimulate the production of nerve growth factor (NGF) and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). These bioactive compounds are crucial for neurogenesis - the formation of new neurons in the brain. This process is fundamental for maintaining cognitive functions such as memory, learning, and mood regulation.


As research continues to unfold, the Lion's Mane mushroom is emerging as a promising natural ally for brain health and neurological well-being.

Top 5 Reasons Why Lion’s Mane Might be Good for Your Brain


Based on the research and expert opinions, here are the top 5 reasons why eating Lion's Mane mushroom is good for neurological health:


  1. Promotes Neurogenesis: Lion's Mane mushroom is known to stimulate the production of nerve growth factor (NGF) and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), which are essential for neurogenesis - the process of forming new neurons in the brain. This can potentially enhance cognitive functions like memory and learning.

  2. Neuroprotective Properties: The bioactive compounds in Lion's Mane mushroom, such as hericenones and erinacines, have neuroprotective properties. They can protect neurons from damage caused by inflammation, oxidative stress, and other harmful factors.

  3. May Help with Neurodegenerative Diseases: Some studies suggest that Lion's Mane mushroom can be beneficial in managing neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer's and Parkinson's. It's believed to slow down the progression of these diseases by reducing inflammation and preventing neuronal damage.

  4. Potential Antidepressant Effects: Research has shown that Lion's Mane mushroom can have antidepressant effects. It's thought to work by boosting the production of NGF, which can enhance mood and alleviate symptoms of depression.

  5. Improves Cognitive Function: Regular consumption of Lion's Mane mushroom can potentially improve various aspects of cognitive function, including attention, memory, and creativity. It's also believed to enhance mental clarity and focus.


Paul Stamets, Microdosing, and Lion’s Mane


Paul Stamets is a renowned mycologist who has done extensive research on the medicinal properties of mushrooms, including Lion's Mane and psilocybin-containing mushrooms. He has proposed that a combination of microdosing psilocybin mushrooms, Lion's Mane, and niacin could have significant benefits for treating a variety of conditions, including neurodegenerative diseases.


Paul Stamets, renowned mycologist, holding a large Agarikon mushroom, showcasing its unique, honeycomb-like structure."
Paul Stamets with an agarikon mushroom

Microdosing refers to the practice of consuming small, sub-perceptual amounts of a psychedelic substance. Many individuals who have integrated microdosing mushrooms into their weekly routine report higher levels of creativity, more energy, increased focus, and improved relational skills, as well as reduced anxiety, stress, and even depression. Some enthusiasts also report that microdosing mushrooms has helped them heighten their spiritual awareness and enhance their senses.


The connection between Paul Stamets, microdosing, and Lion's Mane mushrooms lies in the potential synergistic effects of these substances. Stamets suggests that microdosing psilocybin mushrooms could potentially enhance the neurogenerative effects of Lion's Mane, and vice versa, while the addition of niacin may help to deliver these substances to the nervous system more effectively.


Check out Paul's Patent below!

Neurogenesis patent
.pdf
Download PDF • 1.00MB

Here are some ways to incorporate lion's mane into your diet:

  • Add it to your food. Lion's mane can be added to soups, stews, and other dishes. It has a mild flavor that blends well with other foods.

  • Take it as a supplement. Lion's mane is available as a supplement in powder, capsule, and liquid form.

  • Grow it yourself. Lion's mane is a relatively easy mushroom to grow at home. You can find kits online or at your local nursery.

Try some lion's mane mushroom powder today!



Further Reading


“Potential antidepressant effects of a dietary supplement from the chlorella and lion's mane mushroom complex in aged SAMP8 mice” by Ming-Yu Chou et al. (2022)


This study found that medium and high doses of a complex extract of chlorella and lion's mane mushroom could improve depression behavior in animals. Notably, in the positive control and the medium- and high-dose groups, brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) increased by more than in the control group, suggesting a role in promoting neurogenesis. PDF Link


“Bioactive compounds and antioxidant activity of Lion’s Mane mushroom (Hericium erinaceus) from different growth periods” by Nattapat Tachabenjarong et al.

This study discusses the bioactive compounds in Lion's Mane mushroom and their antioxidant activities, which could indirectly support neurogenesis by protecting neurons from oxidative stress. PDF Link


“A comparative study of conventional and supercritical carbon dioxide extraction methods for the recovery of bioactive compound from Lion’s Mane mushroom (Hericium erinaceus)” by Pinida Joradon et al.


This study highlights the recovery of bioactive compounds from Lion's Mane mushroom using different extraction methods. These bioactive compounds, including ergosterol, hericenone C, and hericene A, are believed to contribute to the mushroom's neurogenic properties. PDF Link


“The Addition of Reishi and Lion’s Mane Mushroom Powder to Pasta Influences the Content of Bioactive Compounds and the Antioxidant, Potential Anti-Inflammatory, and Anticancer Properties of Pasta” by Magdalena Szydłowska-Tutaj et al. (2023)


This study suggests that Lion's Mane mushroom powder can be used for the fortification of semolina pasta, conferring slightly healthier characteristics of the product, including potential neurogenic benefits. PDF Link


Remember, while the potential benefits of Lion's Mane mushroom are promising, it's always important to consult with a healthcare professional before incorporating any new supplements into your diet.



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