• Dr. Wilde

LION'S MANE MUSHROOM

Updated: Oct 20, 2019


Lion’s Mane is medicinal mushroom that mimics its namesake when growing – a shaggy and threaded look. It’s been used for medicinal and culinary purposes for thousands of years, originating in Asian countries. Also known as “Monkey’s Head” or by its scientific name of Hericium erinaceous


Source: Lion’s Mane grows wild predominantly on dead and decaying logs throughout North America and Asian countries including China, Korea, India and Japan. It is remarkably easy to cultivate and so can be grown domestically indoors with minimal difficulty



Benefits:


Immune Booster: Lion’s Mane is an immunomodulator, meaning it modulates the immune response so that it deploys properly and does not over-react, attacking healthy cells and organs. This mushroom is also abundant in antioxidants, helping reduce the damage of free radicals. Lion’s Mane increases your immune system’s creation of macrophages and T-cells and B-cells


Brain and Nervous System Health: Lion’s Mane stimulates the productions of the protein called Nerve Growth Factor which keeps nerve cells healthy and repairs nerve damage. This aspect of the mushroom’s health benefits can lend itself to nerve damage along with neuralgia or neuropathy. Due to its benefits on neurons, it can increase cognitive function and be beneficial for issues like Alzheimer’s or dementia


Cholesterol: Has been shown to increase HDL (good cholesterol) and decrease LDL (bad cholesterol)


Gastrointestinal: Lion’s Mane is used to shrink and help repair stomach ulcers


Blood Sugar and Diabetes: Shows potential in regulating blood sugar and can also reduce nerve damage pain caused by diabetes


Mood Issues: Shown to improve function of the hippocampus which is responsible for processing memories and emotional responses. Due to the anti-inflammatory properties of this mushroom, it can improve brain function and ease symptoms of depression and anxiety



Risks: Very few risks have been records but a few are that it can cause itching, headaches or inflammation. This is most common in those with an allergy to the mushroom. As with all things, pregnant or nursing women should consult their doctor before incorporating Lion’s Mane into their diet



Sustainability: Due to the widespread wild growth on multiple continents and it’s relatively easy domestic cultivation, there is little issue with regard to its sustainability


Processing: There are different constituents and properties of Lion’s Mane which call for a dual-extract process. This includes a combination of boiling in hot water and also soaking in alcohol to extract all desirable medicaments


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Resources:


https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16371948 - Neuroplastic changes with Lion's Mane

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26150007 - Effects on depression

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29091526 - Depression and anxiety

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21941586 - Nervous system injuries

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27481156 - Benefits on Ulcers

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3852124/ - Diabetes

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4415746/ - Diabetic neuropathy

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