Lion's Mane Mushroom: 9 Health Benefits of Lion's Mane
Have you ever heard of lion's mane mushroom? It is better known by its Latin name Hericium herinaceus or the unpronounceable hydne hérisson in French, at Siho we prefer to name it from its English translation: Lion's Mane (lion's mane). Because with this mushroom… you're the lion!
Lion's Mane Mushroom, what is it?
As you can see in the photo below , lion's mane mushroom is not a mushroom like any other. He doesn't have to take his hat off when he enters a church because... he doesn't wear a hat. It is globular in shape, with very soft "thorns" that make it look like a hedgehog, hence its Latin and French name.
This edible mushroom is considered "gourmet" in Asian cuisine, with good reason. Unlike other of its predominantly bitter congeners such as reishi , it is very pleasant to consume, with its flavors leaning towards lobster bisque. Admit that there are worse as a reference!
In recent years the Western world has paid great attention to the lion's mane mushroom, due to its neuro-regenerative properties. It was in 1991 that the Dr Kawagishi updates its nerve growth factors, better known as Nerve Growth Factor or NGF in Shakespeare's language. Thirty more years of studies have confirmed this research and proven its health benefits.
1. It repairs the digestive lining
You know the stomach ulcer. Did you know that an ulcer can also form all along the digestive system, whether in the large intestine (the colon) or the small intestine? Their causes are multiple but nevertheless mainly attributed to the proliferation of Helicobacter Pylori and damage caused to the intestinal or stomach mucosa by prolonged use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), of which ibuprofen is the most well-known representative.
By clicking on this link you will find the complete list on the vidal: https://www.vidal.fr/medicaments/utilisation/bon-usage/paracetamol-aspirine-ains/anti-inflammatory-non-steroidiens-ains.html
Lion's Mane extract helps prevent the development of this famous and dangerous H. Pylori (1) and protects the intestinal mucosa against its damage. (2)
A 2019 study showed that the alcoholic extract of lion's mane was more effective (and without side effects) than conventional drugs that reduce stomach acid in preventing stomach ulcers caused by alcohol consumption.
If the Lion's mane can reduce the damage caused by H.Pylori in the stomach it can also reduce injury and inflammation in other parts of the belly. This mushroom has in fact been tested on two increasingly widespread pathologies: Crohn's and ulcerative colitis. After three weeks of using Lion's Mane extract, patients' symptoms and quality of life were significantly improved (3, 4, 5)
2. Promotes Nervous System Recovery
Age, an accident or even an autoimmune disease can cause damage to the nervous system. Comprised of the brain, spinal cord, and nerves that run through the body, these components work in concert to send and transmit signals throughout virtually the entire body. Thus the neurological system interacts with most of the functions of the human body.
It is made up of the brain, spinal cord, and peripheral nerves that run through the body. These components work together to send and transmit signals that control almost every function in the body.
In the event of damage to one of these components, our health can be greatly affected. We can thus lose our motor functions, in part or in whole, and/or see our mental functions affected. If in some cases this damage can heal it can take a very long time.
Research has shown that lion's mane may help speed the healing of these injuries by stimulating growth factor and nerve cell repair (6, 7)
A study carried out on rats in 2011 showed that this mushroom reduced healing time by 23 to 41%.
In the same spirit this lion's mane mushroom may also help reduce the severity of brain damage after a stroke. Rats (you will often read this word in this article) were given high doses of the extract immediately after a stroke. Inflammation then fell sharply and brain connections were reduced by 44%. (9)
3. A great help against depression and anxiety
30%: This huge figure is the estimated percentage of people living in developed countries who suffer from anxiety and/or depression. And this before the Covid19.
If these symptoms can have many causes, chronic inflammation plays an important role. (10)
The anti-inflammatory effects of Lion's Mane can significantly reduce depression and anxiety issues as evidenced by this study in mice, where measured levels of anxiety were significantly lower in those to whom the researchers tested. administered lion's mane extract. (11)
The lion's mane can also help regenerate cells in the brain and help it better process memories and emotional responses by improving the functioning of the hippocampus. (12)
4. Nootropic effect against cognitive degeneration
When we no longer remember details, we then tend to say with a smile: "that's it, it's Alzheimer's" or even: "I'm getting old". We know this from experience: the older we get, the more the ability to develop new connections decreases.
Is this what would explain the speed of Sonic the... hedgehog precisely? Joking aside, several studies have therefore shown that this mushroom increases the speed of response of the brain, which therefore makes it an excellent nootropic. If nootropics are an unknown word for you patience, we will talk about them very soon since they are a major axis of development for SIHO .
We were talking about memory loss . Well can you imagine that lion's mane mushroom may also help protect us from Alzheimer's disease , by reducing memory impairment as well as neuronal damage caused by the disease. (13)
While few studies have been tested on humans, there is, on the other hand, a long experience of benefits lion's mane mushroom in traditional medicines. A study dating from 2009 showed that at a rate of 3g per day for four months, adults suffering from cognitive disorders saw their mental functioning improve considerably.
5. Lion's Mane Mushroom Benefits Against Diabetes
When we can no longer regulate the level of sugar in the blood then comes a disease: diabetes . A permanently high blood sugar level causes complications such as kidney disease, nerve damage or even loss of vision.
Lion's mane extract may also be beneficial. Indeed, several studies have demonstrated its effectiveness in this field of application by noting a significant drop in blood sugar levels in normal and diabetic mice, even at low doses.
By blocking the effect of a certain enzyme (alpha-glucosides) the body is then unable to absorb carbohydrates as efficiently as usual. This leads to a drop in blood sugar levels.
In addition to this benefit, it can also reduce the pain associated with neuropathic damage caused by diabetes, a symptom that is often overlooked. It was found in experiments on diabetic mice that this mushroom allowed in six weeks to significantly reduce pain, lower blood sugar levels and increase antioxidant levels. (14)
6. A fat-burning and cardio-protective mushroom
Chronic cardiovascular diseases are more and more frequent. The main causes are: obesity, hypertriglyceridemia, hypercholesterolemia (lipids) and smoking.
These three factors together have repercussions on the compliance of blood vessels and lead to high blood pressure with devastating consequences.
In addition, poor blood circulation can cause clots which, if they clog the arteries, lead to thrombosis requiring the taking of long-term anticoagulants.
Consider seeing a cardiologist if you have this symptom to help prevent strokes.
During a study, lion's mane extract has been shown to burn fat as well as reduce triglyceride levels. In another experiment, rats were fed a high-fat diet.
Those who had consumed lion's mane extract saw their triglyceride levels drop by 27% and… their weight by 42%, in 28 days. (15, 16)
Cholesterol molecules, when oxidized, tend to attach to the arteries. As a result, the latter harden (atherosclerosis), in doing so they increase the risk of heart attack and stroke.
Lion's Mane can not only prevent the oxidation of cholesterol in the blood but also has a unique compound called hericenone B which reduces the rate of clotting in the blood.
7. What if it could help fight cancer?
Several studies have demonstrated activity accelerating the death of cancer cells when they are in contact with lion's mane extract. It has been tested and proven on liver, colon, stomach and blood cancers. (17, 18, 19)
In addition to this effect, yamabushiitake extract is said to slow down the spread of cancer cells linked to lung cancer by 69%.
8. An ally against inflammation and oxidative stress
Oxidative stress is evil in a modern version: it is considered to be the cause of many recent diseases such as heart disease, cancer and autoimmune diseases.
The extract from lion's mane mushroom can help fight the latter thanks to its impressive antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activity. In a study examining the antioxidant capacities of 14 mushrooms our hydre hérisson ranks 3rd , just after reishi (ganoderma lucidium) and Schizophyllum commune, very little known here but widely consumed in India, Madagascar and Peru.
Further studies on reducing markers of inflammation and oxidative stress in the appendix. (20, 21, 22, 23)
9. It helps boost the immune system
Since the Covid episode everyone knows the word "immunity" and the impact it can have on our health. This is our defense system against unwanted viruses or bacteria.
Having a weak immune system therefore exposes the body to the risk of developing more diseases.
Research on mice (still the poor ones) has shown that lion's mane extract increases the activity of the immune system intestinal, and that it protects us against pathogens.
Our little hericium herinaceus will make it possible to modify the intestinal flora specialized in immunity. In the same way, mice, to which we had administered lethal doses of salmonella, saw their lifespan quadruple by the consumption of this beneficial mushroom. (24, 25)
Lion's Mane side effects?
I was what Taty Lauwers calls "the canary in the mine", that is to say hypersensitive to the vast majority of products (even supposed to be excellent for health) that the various doctors and therapists gave me. were advising. That is to say if the side effects are important to me!
I would like to tell you that Lion's Mane , even of the highest quality like the one we offer, has no side effects . It is this information that you will find in the vast majority of articles. But the truth is a little more complex.
There is no possible overdose (my wife consumes several teaspoons a day, it's crazy). More seriously, according to some studies, consumption of up to 5g/kg (300g for a 60kg person therefore!) for a month does not cause any side effects.
If rare people may experience certain unpleasant effects, such as an increase in symptoms reminiscent of hay fever. What is the cause ?
Nerve growth factor, which destabilizes mast cells and thus releases histamine. This excess of histamine then causes symptoms specific to each.
If they are not serious, they can nevertheless be unpleasant. The solution: reduce your consumption and everything should be back to normal. Otherwise, we strongly urge you to find out about the symptoms associated with mast cell activation syndrome , histamine intolerance or mastocytosis.
How to store and clean your lion's mane mushroom?
Once you've got your hands on your lion's mane mushrooms, what's the best way to keep them cool? And how do you clean them before cooking them?
Store mushrooms in a paper bag in the fridge (not in the crisper drawer). You can leave them in the packaging in which they are delivered. But the best way to store mushrooms is in a paper bag, which allows them to breathe.
Leave them in the main part of the fridge for good air circulation, not in the produce drawer.
Clean them by rinsing them quickly. Rinse the mushrooms quickly to remove any dirt (don't soak them, they may get soggy).
Lion's Mane Mushroom: Recipes
- Remove the bottom of the mushrooms, then cut them into slices.
- Cook for 2 minutes over medium heat. We like to use a mixture of olive oil and butter for cooking, but you can use just olive oil for vegans.
- Flip them over and cook for 1-2 minutes more, then add the seasonings.
- Once the mushrooms are browned on both sides, we add a little garlic powder, soy sauce and a pinch of salt. Taste and add more salt if desired!
Lion's mane benefits of a mushroom remains unrecognized for too long.
Lion's Mane Mushroom has nootropic activity. It helps fight against aging, it helps repair the intestinal mucosa, promotes neuronal regeneration, which reduces anxiety and depression.
Its anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and immune properties are an asset in the fight against heart disease, diabetes and cancer.
SIHO has selected, for you, a lion's mane extract from the fruit, and only from the fruit, so that there are no oat polysaccharides. In addition, it has the richest content of b-glucans (remember to check before buying this mushroom, its composition in b-glucans).