2 August, 2021

Lion's Mane: the Brain and Nervous System Mushroom. Part 3.

If you are hearing about the Lion's Mane mushroom for the first time, chances are you have a lot of questions about it. Even if you are an experienced forager, there are many things about Lion's Mane mushroom that you probably don't know. For example, what is the right time to consume the mushroom?

Generally, medicinal mushrooms can be taken at any time of the day and still get the benefits you are targeting. It is not possible to notice the benefits associated with medicinal mushrooms immediately after consuming them. This explains why you will take Lion's Mane mushrooms for weeks or months before seeing the effects.

This is the third series of the Lion's Mane. That means we already have part one and part two, where we have discussed some aspects of the Lion's Mane mushroom.

In part one, we discussed the types of Lion's Mane, foraging for Lion's Lane, cooking with them, and the look-alikes that you need to pay attention to.

In part two, we focused on the nutritional qualities of the mushroom, its properties, medicinal uses, and the form in which they are available. The forms available include mushroom powders, dried, fresh capsules, elixirs, extracts, and other derivatives.

This part of the series focuses on Lion's Mane for children, adults and consuming them. We try to answer the questions; is it safe to take Lion's Mane mushroom in the morning or at night? Let's get started;

Lion's Mane for Children

Is it safe to give kids lion's mane mushroom? This is a question that needs more and detailed pieces of research to answer. But as of now, we can focus on what has already been discovered about the mushroom’s nutrients and how they can help your kid.

Generally, kids are always prone to many medical conditions because most of their organs are still developing along with their developing immune system. Whatever they take during that period plays a significant role in their development and may affect them later in life.

Lion's Mane mushroom is not bad for your kid. It has nutrients that may help the child during development. Here we take a look at the benefits kids get from lion's mane.

Boosts the Child's Immune System

The immune system of a kid is not usually strong enough to prevent the entry of illnesses. This explains why they always need medical attention, even with the slightest signs. A strong immune system prevents viruses, bacteria, and other pathogens from getting into the body system.

Lion's Mane has been proven to improve the immune system by enhancing the activities of the intestinal immune system. This, in turn, helps protect the kid's body from pathogens ingested. However, more research is needed to learn more about the lion's mane and its relationship to the immune system.

Protects Against Digestive Tract Ulcers

Digestive tract ulcers were previously linked with older people, but you can find teenagers and even toddlers experiencing the condition. The ulcers can form anywhere in the digestive tract ranging from the stomach to the small intestine to the large intestine.

Digestive tract ulcers, especially those that form in the stomach, are mainly caused by an overgrowth of Helicobacter pylori. The ulcers can also come as a result of inflammations and excessive tissue damage in the intestine. Lion's Mane may help because it inhibits the growth of H. pylori bacteria. It also helps prevent tissue damage and may reduce intestinal inflammation.

Reduces Heart Disease Risks in Kids

Heart disease risks are usually associated with obesity, large amounts of oxidised cholesterol, high triglycerides, and blood clots. Some kids are born with heart conditions. Natural remedies are generally recommended for such kids because most of their cells have not fully developed to sustain most treatment strategies.

Research indicates that Lion's Mane extracts can help with heart diseases by lowering triglyceride levels. It may also help with an increased tendency of getting blood clots.

Lion's Mane for Adults

As aforementioned, the Lion's Mane may help with several conditions that are associated with children. Here we take a look at how the same mushrooms may help adults. Note that medicinal mushrooms cannot be used to treat infections but can help to reduce symptoms resulting from the conditions.

Promotes Diabetes Regulation

Diabetes is a common condition that occurs when your body can no-longer control blood sugar levels. When blood sugars are elevated, complications like nerve damage in feet and hands, kidney disease, and vision loss set in.

Lion's Mane mushroom may help promote blood sugar control and also reduce some of the side effects. It promotes blood sugar regulation by blocking the activities of the enzyme alpha-glucosidase. This helps to break down carbs in the intestines.

By blocking carbs digestion in the small intestine, the body fails to absorb and digest the carbs effectively, which helps lower blood sugar levels.

Diabetic conditions are associated with nerve pain in the feet and hands. Lion's Mane mushroom may help to mitigate this pain. More studies need to be carried out while this mushroom has shown several therapeutic properties as a supplement for diabetes.

Helps protect Against Dementia in Adults

Adults, especially those approaching their old age, begin experiencing a decline in brain growth and the ability to form new connections. This explains why mental functions get worse as an individual gets older. Studies show that the lion's mane stimulates the growth of brain cells through erinacines and hericenones compounds.

Lion's Mane and its extracts may help reduce memory loss symptoms. It also helps prevent neural damage that results from Alzheimer's disease. This condition results in the accumulation of amyloid-beta plaques that promote neural damage.

While no studies confirm whether Lion's Mane can treat Alzheimer's disease, it boosts mental functioning, which helps reduce the condition.

Promotes Recovery from Nervous System Injuries

The nervous system includes the spinal cord, brain, and other nerves that run throughout the body. Nerves are used to transmit signals that control body functions. This explains why an injury in the nervous system causes devastating effects.

Even the slightest injury can lead to loss of mental functions, paralysis. Healing from nervous system injuries can take a long time, depending on the severity of the condition or the methods used to heal. Studies show that Lion's Mane extracts may promote speed recovery from nervous system injuries and their related symptoms.

Lion's Mane works by promoting the growth and repair of nerve cells. It may also help reduce the severity of stroke effects like brain damage. While these results look promising, more research is needed to determine more benefits for the nervous system.

Having Lion's Mane at Night

Lion's Mane can be used comfortably at night by mixing with other meals. There are usually mixed reactions when someone mentions consuming these mushrooms at night. Some claim that they may hinder you from having a sound sleep because they help enhance memory, focus, and mood.

We all take lion's mane for different reasons well known to us. Generally, Lion's Mane mushroom can be consumed at any time of the day, depending on your target. What matters is where you source your mushroom.

The cases where people got undesired effects after consuming Lion's Mane mushroom are linked to where they sourced it from. In our previous part of this lion's mane series, we discussed the look-alikes of the Lion's Mane. Chances are those who got undesired effects may have consumed different species in the name of lion's mane or its look-alikes.

Therefore, we recommend getting the right lion's mane and preparing it using the correct procedure. Always get your lion's mane products like powders, matcha, dried, and fresh mushrooms from trusted vendors. Here are the benefits that come with consuming Lion's Mane mushroom at night.

Helps with Occasional Stress

Each time we want to sleep, our bodies need to transition by activating the parasympathetic nervous system. This naturally turns off our flight or fight mode. It is common these days to find most people struggling to make this natural transition.

Several factors like poor diet, stress, and blue light can cause our flight and fight modes to persist even when we are ready to sleep. With active flight and fight mode, it isn't easy to gain sleep. An effective way to help our body systems is by taking adaptogens. These are substances that may help our adrenals to deal with occasional stress. Lion's Mane mushroom has adaptogenic properties.

Promotes Relief from Occasional Restlessness

Lion's Mane offers cognitive support by supporting the nervous system and mood. If you are experiencing occasional restlessness, chances are your body has difficulties transitioning during sleep hours. To have a natural sleep transition, then you have to deal with occasional restlessness.

While lion's mane is recognised for supporting focus and mental clarity, there are no reported side effects that may keep you awake. According to research, many view it as a stimulant because of its psychoactive effects, but that is no longer the case.

Rather than being a stimulant, the Lion's Mane mushroom has shown different properties that help the body. Our bodies usually understand what they should do, but internal and external factors hinder them. Generally, lion's mane is good before bed to help adjust your lifestyle naturally.

Having Lion's Mane in the Morning

There have been mixed opinions as to whether you can take lion's mane mushroom in the morning. The answer is yes because it helps stimulate brain functions. In most cases, when taking in the morning, Lion's Mane is usually paired with beverages like coffee and tea. This is why you will find Lion's Mane tea or coffee powders being sold by supplement vendors.

When combined with any beverages, the Lion's Mane mushroom improves energy, clarity, and focus. However, the Lion's Mane mushroom may not provide you with these benefits when taking it for the first time. The effects are gradually seen with consistent use of the mushroom.

Lion's Mane can offer long-term nootropic effects like improving memory, focus, and general learning. These can be achieved after weeks and months of using the Lion's Mane continuously.

If you want to get the best Lion's Mane mushroom in the morning, we recommend you try Lion's Mane powder in tea or coffee. It is easier to use mushroom powder in the morning than any other form. You can prepare your tea or coffee and add the powder, then stir gently to mix.

Note that mushroom powder may lose its potency if cooked in very hot beverages. It is recommended that the tea be warm and not cold to help mix uniformly. Consequently, getting your Lion's Mane mushroom powder from a trusted vendor is essential to achieve results quickly.

Conclusion

Lion's Mane mushroom can be used at any age and by any gender. The difference is in the benefits. For example, as highlighted earlier in this article, the Lion's Mane offers different benefits to children than those provided for adults. 

Mushrooms need time to build in your system before you can get desired effects. To quickly get it into your system, take Lion's Mane mushroom powders, matcha, dried, fresh, or other extracts consistently. Like most herbal supplements and adaptogens, Lion's Mane may take more time to work than you expected. Don't get discouraged, and keep the consistency, and you will eventually see the results.

Further Reading

  1. Bowen Ma, Tao Feng, Sanfeng Zhang, Haining Zhuang, Da Chen, Lingyun Yao, Jingsong Zhang. The Inhibitory Effects of Hericium Erinaceus β-glucan on in vitro Starch Digestion. Frontiers in Nutrition 2021.
  2. Feng Zhang, Hui Lv, Xuhua Zhang. Erinacerins, Novel Glioma Inhibitors from Hericium Erinaceus, Induce Apoptosis of U87 Cells through Bax/Caspase-2 Pathway. Anti-Cancer Agents in Medicinal Chemistry 2020, 20 (17), 2082-2088.
  3. Benjarong Thongbai, Sylvie Rapior, Kevin D. Hyde, Kathrin Wittstein, Marc Stadler. Hericium erinaceus, an amazing medicinal mushroom. Mycological Progress 2015, 14 (10).
  4. I-Chen Li, Yen-Lien Chen, Li-Ya Lee, Wan-Ping Chen, Yueh-Ting Tsai, Chin-Chu Chen, Chin-Shuh Chen. Evaluation of the toxicological safety of erinacine A-enriched Hericium erinaceus. Food and Chemical Toxicology 2014, 70 , 61-67.
  5. Marina Soković, Ana Ćirić, Jasmina Glamočlija, Dejan Stojković. The Bioactive Properties of Mushrooms. 2016,,, 83-122.
  6. Artem Blagodatski, Margarita Yatsunskaya, Valeriia Mikhailova, Vladlena Tiasto, Alexander Kagansky, Vladimir L. Katanaev. Medicinal mushrooms as an attractive new source of natural compounds for future cancer therapy. Oncotarget 2018, 9 (49) , 29259-29274.
  7. Mingxing Wang, Yang Gao, Duoduo Xu, Tetsuya Konishi, Qian Gao. Hericium erinaceus (Yamabushitake): a unique resource for developing functional foods and medicines. Food Funct. 2014, 5 (12) , 3055-3064.
  8. Yang Luo, Zhe Ren, Ruonan Bo, Xiaopan Liu, Junwen Zhang, Ruihong Yu, Shixiong Chen, Zhen Meng, Yongde Xu, Yufang Ma, Yifan Huang, Tao Qin. Designing selenium polysaccharides-based nanoparticles to improve immune activity of Hericium erinaceus. International Journal of Biological Macromolecules 2020, 143 , 393-400.
  9. Benjarong Thongbai, Sylvie Rapior, Kevin D. Hyde, Kathrin Wittstein, Marc Stadler. Hericium erinaceus, an amazing medicinal mushroom. Mycological Progress 2015, 14 (10).
  10. Guozhong Zhao, Chong Liu, Hadiatullah Hadiatullah, Yunping Yao, Fuping Lu. Effect of Hericium Erinaceus on bacterial diversity and volatile flavour changes of soy sauce. 2021, 139 , 110543.
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As lovers of mushrooms, we began as a small grower of oyster mushrooms in the Canberra and have now grown to producing a whole range of different mushroom products. 
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