Lion’s Mane mushroom (Hericium erinaceus) is a potent brain-boosting, mood health enhancing, immune supportive, nerve regenerating medicinal mushroom with potent nootropic health benefits.
Traditionally used in Chinese Medicine for centuries, Lion’s Mane mushroom benefits can help support digestion, enhance the immune system, as well as nourish the five internal organs; spleen, lungs, liver, kidneys and heart.
Lion’s Mane benefits as a potent antioxidant and anti inflammatory adaptogenic mushroom. Modern research has proven the unique ability for Lion’s Mane mushroom to calm the nervous system, elevate mood, alleviate anxiety, depression, and repair neural degeneration in the brain.
Lion’s Mane mushroom extract is revered as a potent natural nootropic being nothing short of rocket fuel for the brain. Nootropics are known as “smart drugs” (compounds derived from natural or synthetic sources) that work to enhance brain health function and improve mental capacities.
Nootropics like Lion's Mane extract are popular among students, entrepreneurs and tech startup employees to give their mind and cognitive abilities an extra health boost.
Lion's Mane extract helps to improve overall brain health benefits, boost cognitive function, repair cognitive impairment, improve memory, concentration and focus and reduce symptoms of brain fog.
Table of Contents
Outlining the Many Lion’s Mane Mushroom Benefits
According to the scientific studies and literature, these are many of Lion's Mane mushroom health benefits:
- Enhances Brainpower
- Boosts Memory, Mood, Focus and Concentration
- Stimulates Nerve Growth Factor (NGF)
- Improves Cognitive Function
- Repairs Cognitive Impairment
- Alleviates Brain Fog and Mental Fatigue
- Calms the Central Nervous System (CNS)
- Reduces Stress, Anxiety and Depression
- Builds New Neural Connections
- Regenerates and Strengthens Neural Pathways
- Supports the Formation of New Ideas
- Helps Repair Nerve Damage
- Supports Digestion and Gut Health
- Balances the Good Bacteria in the Microbiome
- Enhances the Immune System
- Boosts Antioxidants
- Supports Adrenal Gland Function
- Protects the Heart, Liver and Kidneys
- Anti inflammatory health benefits
- May Help Lower Blood Pressure
As a superb brain tonic, Lion’s Mane mushroom is rare in its ability to generate neural connections through it’s ability to stimulate NGF – nerve growth factor, and cross the blood-brain-barrier and stimulate the release of BDNF – brain-derived neurotropic factor.
This means Lion’s Mane extract has the ability to repair, regenerate and strengthen the health of existing neural pathways and support new neural pathways; improving cognitive function and memory, support the formation of new ideas, elevate focus and concentration, alleviate symptoms of brain fog, supporting new neural growth and cell health, as well as supporting our entire nervous system; both the central (brain and spinal cord) and the peripheral (our limbs and organs).
Lion’s Mane extract is also helpful in neuropathy, MS, nerve damage, gastric ulcers, as well as a lot of emerging research surrounding Lion’s Mane’s role in preventing and treating neurological diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Dementia. (3)
These Lions’ Mane benefits are achieved through the unique diterpenoid compounds–Hericenones and erinacines–contained in Lion's Mane mushroom. These alcohol-oil soluble nutrients work to stimulate the brain and increase the production of NGF.
Lion’s Mane extract also supports mood health. Scientific studies have shown Lion's Mane extract to be effective in reducing stress and alleviating symptoms of anxiety and depression.
Being a top medicinal mushroom, Lions' mane benefits further supports immune system health due to its high polysaccharide content, long-chain sugars (carbohydrates) that greatly enhance immune system function. These immune-modulating compounds and others also provide antibacterial, anti inflammatory and antimicrobial health benefits.
Lion’s Mane benefits the digestive system by supporting the healthy gut bacteria in the microbiome. Lions' Mane benefits are gastro-protective and work to reduce inflammation in the gut which is associated with leaky gut and other digestive issues. (3-6)
What is Lion’s Mane
Hericium erinaceus, Lion’s Mane extract is a popular medicinal mushroom. Its name originates from it’s physical similarities to that of a Lion’s Mane, not the actual mane of Lion.
It’s also dubbed “Natures Nutrient for Neurons” conveying its potent ability to support healthy neurons and nervous system function. (3)
Medicinal mushrooms are classified as adaptogens – a superior class of herbs that have the ability to increase the body's resilience to stress in all forms– physical, emotional, mental, etc., modulate the immune system and because they are non-toxic they can be consumed over the long term to improve optimal health and wellbeing.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Much Lion’s Mane Should I Take Daily?
For optimal heath, we recommend starting with 1/2 tsp (1-2 grams) of a concentrated extract powder of Lion's Mane mushroom (Hericium erinaceus). (3)
Lion's Mane extract is generally very safe and gentle for people of all ages. It is also safe to use in high doses. Start with the recommended dose and build up to a larger dosage when your body feels ready.
How Long Does it Take for Lion’s Mane to Work?
For some individuals, Lion's Mane health benefits can be experienced viscerally within the first few days of adding Lion’s Mane extract into your diet. For others less sensitive, they may experience cumulative health benefits from an Lion's Mane extract over time.
For best results, we recommend consuming a high quality Lion's Mane extract daily for 30-100 days.
Does Lion’s Mane Make You Smarter?
Lion’s Mane mushroom extract makes you smarter due to its unique ability to stimulate the production of nerve growth factor (NGF) in the brain and strengthen the connection and health of neurons.
Neurons are brain cells that connect with each other which is how the transmission of thoughts and cognitive function actions are sent.
Using Lion’s Mane extract daily helps protect and improve these neural connections, thereby, we’re able to better recall information, retain information and protect these cognitive associations.
Lion’s Mane additionally protects the myelin sheath – a fatty substance that surrounds each neuron and increases the speed of travelling nerve impulses. (3-6)
Is Lion’s Mane Good for Memory?
Lion’s Mane extract is good for memory due to its ability to strengthen existing neural connections, preserve existing memories and by reducing brain inflammation and the build-up of amyloid plaque, it reduces the chances of Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and Dementia. Lion’s mane extract also improves all aspects of cognitive function and brain health. (3-6)
Related: Mushrooms for Women's Health
Lion’s Mane Mushroom Side Effects
Lion’s Mane mushroom extract is considered very safe for most people of all ages that desire a health boost.
If you know or suspect you have an allergy to mushrooms, it's best to avoid Lion’s Mane mushroom altogether.
In some individuals, Lion's Mane mushroom side effects may cause some gastrointestinal discomfort and other mild detox reactions.
If you are taking any prescribed anticoagulant, anti-platelet and anti-diabetic drugs, please consult with your doctor before taking any Lion's Mane mushroom extract supplement. (2,3)
Lion’s Mane mushroom (Hericium erinaceus) is recognised as one of the most unique and popular medicinal mushrooms in the world.
Daily use can provide a lifetime of health benefits including an improvement in overall brain health, cognitive function, better mood, memory and focus, enhanced immune system, healthy digestion and the ability to adapt and manage stress.
Related: Learn more about the lifespan of Lion's Mane mushroom.
- Kohlstadt, I. Advancing Medicine with Food and Nutrients, 2nd ed.
- Natural Medicines, 2020, https://naturalmedicines.therapeuticresearch.com
- Powell, Martin. Medicinal Mushrooms - A Clinical Guide. Mycology Press. Kindle Edition.
- Friedman, M. 2015. Chemistry, Nutrition, and Health-Promoting Properties of Hericium erinaceus (Lion’s Mane) Mushroom Fruiting Bodies and Mycelia and Their Bioactive Compounds.
- Cheung, P. 2010. The nutritional and health benefits of mushrooms. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-3010.2010.01859.x
- He et al. Structures, biological activities, and industrial applications of the polysaccharides from Hericium erinaceus (Lion’s Mane) mushroom: A review. 2017.