There are various names for the lion’s mane mushroom. Mycologists, or scientists who study fungi, refer to it by the scientific name Hericium Erinaceus. In Japanese, it’s called Yamabushitake, while in English, it’s called lion’s mane. Alternately, called the bearded tooth fungus or the pom mushroom due to its highly textured surface, lion’s mane mushrooms are native to northeast Asia’s highlands, but they’re also found throughout Europe and North America.
The lion’s mane is a key species in traditional medicine in China, Korea, and Japan, where it has been used for hundreds of years. It has recently gained prominence due to another nickname – Lion’s mane dubbed a “smart mushroom”. These shrooms providing support to cognitive function and neurological health, are gaining worldwide notice for their outstanding brain-supporting capabilities. Exploring the benefits of lion’s mane mushrooms might help you decide if you need this cunning fungus in your life.
The benefits of the Lion’s Mane Mushrooms
Here are some of the top benefits of lion’s mane and ways you can incorporate this powerful functional mushroom into your life, If you do want to boost your productivity, increase your attention on days when you can’t remember where you put your vehicle keys (only to discover them in your hand), fend off brain fog, encourage alertness and a happy mood, or inspire creativity and mental clarity, we’ve got you covered.
Food that serves a purpose
Lion’s mane mushrooms are a type of edible fungus. Some individuals relate the taste to seafood, particularly crab or lobster when found fresh and sautéed. But lion’s mane is more than just a tasty meal; it’s been designated as a functional mushroom, which means it’s a food that does more than just offer nourishment.
While lion’s mane can supplement your diet with protein, complex carbohydrates, vitamins, and minerals, it also includes bioactive chemicals that help the body’s activities and processes. The lion’s mane can assist your body to perform more efficiently and stay balanced in the face of internal and external stressors if you use it regularly in this capacity. As a result, a growing number of people are turning to supplements to have immediate access to the health benefits of this fascinating cuisine.
The substance called Nootropic
It safeguards and enhances the brain’s natural cognitive skills. Erinacines and hericenones, which are naturally occurring bioactive molecules found in the lion’s mane, have been linked to improved cognitive health. Because erinacines are present in the mycelium and hericenones are only found in the fruiting body, the only way to get the advantages of both is to eat a full mushroom product that includes all portions of the mushroom’s life cycle.
These crucial nootropic chemicals contained in the lion’s mane can pass across the blood-brain barrier, allowing them to reach the brain. They increase the production of the biologically active molecules NGF (nerve growth factor) and BDNF (brain-derived neurotrophic factor) (brain-derived neurotrophic factor). NGF and BDNF are two proteins that aid in the development, healing, and regular operation of neurons, the nerve cells that make up our brain and nervous system. Neuroplasticity, or the formation of new neural connections in the brain after an injury or sickness, requires certain factors.
Supplementing lab animals with lion’s mane promotes cognitive function and nerve regeneration, according to several studies.
• The lion’s mane enhanced the creation of myelin (the protective coating) on nerve cells in animal tissue cultures, according to one lab study.
• In mice, the lion’s mane provides a protective effect against learning and memory problems, according to a Japanese study.
• Lion’s mane mycelial extracts containing erinacines were discovered to have a therapeutic effect on rats suffering from brain damage in a study conducted in Taiwan.
• Rats with peripheral nerve damage were given extracts prepared from lion’s mane fruiting bodies. In comparison to the rats who did not get the mushroom extracts, nerve tissue regeneration was faster and more complete.
Experts have concluded that compounds present in lion’s mane promote good cognitive function and mood, although only a few human studies have been done.
• In randomized, controlled research in Japan, men and women aged 50 to 80 who were given 3000mg of dried lion’s mane powder daily had significantly enhanced cognitive performance compared to those who were given a placebo. However, the benefits vanished within four weeks of stopping the dosage.
• Randomized, controlled research with menopausal women in Japan found that those who were given cookies and those who were given lion’s mane powder had better sleep and mood than those who received a placebo.
The processes through which the bioactive substances in the lion’s mane support healthy brain and nervous system function are still being researched, and they hold promise for future applications.
According to Dr. Sandra Carter, Ph.D. Co-founder of Om“With Lion’s Mane, there are some key bio-actives that help with neurotransmission. And so that means it is helping with the nerve impulses that appear to support our memory and cognition. It’s something that’s helping us maintain and support our brains and keep them working more actively.”
Like other mushrooms, the lion’s mane contains powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. Antioxidants prevent oxidative damage by neutralizing free radicals created in our cells. Anti-inflammatories help the body heal faster. These qualities are likely to contribute to the lion’s mane’s neuroprotective effects on the brain, but they will also serve to protect tissue from oxidative stress and inflammation throughout the body.
Like other functional mushroom species, the lion’s mane includes a wide range of phytochemicals, including polysaccharides like beta-glucans, a prebiotic fiber, and digestive enzymes that boost immune health and promote healthy gut flora. The immune system is influenced by the bioactive compounds in mushrooms, allowing it to respond effectively without overreacting.
According to Steve Farrar, Om co-founder and renowned mycologist, “Lion’s Mane helps support memory, cognitive function, mood enhancement, immune function, and provides a good balance of amino acids and antioxidants to support your overall health and nutrition.”
Fungal polysaccharides, according to a study, aid the body’s immunological defense mechanism, which protects us from colds, flu, and other respiratory infections. Anti-inflammatory qualities, on the other hand, aid in the reduction of allergy symptoms by calming immunological processes.