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  • Toni Pakula

The Power of Lions Mane: Uncovering the Benefits of this Incredible Mushroom.


Written by Toni Pakula - May 2024




Lions Mane is getting a lot of hype at the moment, but is the hype worth the rave?  Well according to research it is - there are many papers being published illustrating the medicinal properties of Lions Mane and its effectiveness in repairing and stimulating neuronal growth. 

 

This edible mushroom, scientifically known as Hericium erinaceus, is plentiful in East Asian countries like Japan and China.(1-4) Beyond being an antioxidant powerhouse with antimicrobial and anticarcinogenic properties, Lion's Mane has the remarkable ability to traverse the blood-brain barrier, promoting nerve growth factor synthesis and repair.


Photo by Artur Kornakov

 

Animal studies suggest that Lion's Mane possesses neuroprotective and neuroinflammatory properties, which can enhance cognition, memory, and mood.(1-4) Research by Docherty, Faye, and Smith (2023) delves into how Lion's Mane can improve depression and anxiety, while clinical trials have shown cognitive enhancement in individuals aged 50 to 80 after a 16-week trial at 3 grams per day.(1-4) This presents hopeful prospects for those grappling with neurodegenerative disorders like dementia, offering insights into how the gut-brain axis supports various neurological and biological pathways, ultimately influencing mental health, well-being, and cognitive function.

 

In its natural form, Lion's Mane is rich in proteins, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins, minerals, and an array of biologically active compounds that positively impact brain health, nerve recovery, gastric health, heart health, and immunity.(1-4) Moreover, Lion's Mane is considered a safe supplement for prolonged use, with minimal reported side effects.(1-4) There are various ways to incorporate Lion's Mane into your routine – from adding a powdered form to your morning beverage or soup, to taking it in capsule form daily, or even enjoying it as a delicious meal.

 

For enthusiasts like myself, there's the option to take your love for Lion's Mane to the next level by growing your own. Regardless of how you choose to integrate this remarkable nootropic into your diet, it's clear that Lion's Mane is a supplement worth considering daily, with ongoing research worth keeping an eye on.

 

Here is a quick simple recipe for Lions Mane stir fry you may like to try.  Enjoy

 

 

Lions Mane Mushroom Stir-Fry



 

Ingredients:

 

200g Lions Mane Mushrooms, sliced

1 bell pepper, thinly sliced

1 onion, thinly sliced

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 tablespoons soy sauce (or tamari for gluten-free option)

1 tablespoon sesame oil

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 teaspoon ginger, minced

Salt and pepper to taste

Cooked rice or noodles, for serving

Sesame seeds and green onions for garnish

Photo by Kevin McCutcheon

 

Instructions:


1. Heat olive oil in a large skillet or wok over medium-high heat.

2. Add minced garlic and ginger to the skillet and sauté for about 1 minute until fragrant.

3. Add sliced Lions Mane mushrooms to the skillet and cook for 3-4 minutes until they start to brown.

4. Add sliced bell pepper and onion to the skillet and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes until they begin to soften.

5. Pour soy sauce (or tamari) and sesame oil over the vegetables in the skillet. Stir well to combine.

6. Continue cooking for another 2-3 minutes, stirring frequently, until the vegetables are tender and coated in the sauce.

7. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

8. Serve the stir-fry hot over cooked rice or noodles.

9. Garnish with sesame seeds and sliced green onions if desired.

 

Enjoy your Lions Mane Mushroom Stir-Fry! Feel free to adapt it with your favourite vegetables or protein options like tofu or chicken.

 

 

 

References:


1. Docherty, Sarah., Doughty, L, Faye., Smith, F, Ellen. (2023). “The Acute and Chronic Effects of lion’s Mane Mushroom Supplementation on Cognitive Function, Stress and mood in Young Adults: A Double-Blind, Parallel Groups, Pilot Study.” Nutrients. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu15224842


2. Williams, Jessica and David, Gilbert, Dr. (2023). “Lion’s Mane Mushroom – From Culinary to Medicine.” European Institute of Knowledge & Innovation. https://doi.org/10.59652/aim.v1i2.55


3. Spelman, Kevin., Sutherland, Elizabeth., Bagade, Aravind. (2017). “Neurological Activity of Lion’s Mane (Hericium erinaceus)”. Journal of Restorative Medicine.

           

4. Lai, Puei-Lene., Naidu, Murali., Sabaratnam, Vikineswary.,  Wong, Kah Hui., David, Rosie Pamela.,  Kuppusamy, Umah Rani., Abdullah, Noorlidah & Malek, A, Sri Nurestri. “Neurotrophic Properties of the Lion’s Mane Medicinal Mushroom, Hericium erinaceus (Higher Basidiomycetes) from Malaysia.” (2013). International Journal of Medicinal Mushrooms. https://doi.org/10.1615/IntJMedMushr.v15.i6.30

 

  Photo 1 of Lions Mane by Kier in sight archives https://unsplash.com/s/photos/lions- mane-mushroom

Photo 2 Lions Mane growing on a tree by Artur Kornakov https://unsplash.com/photos/a-tree-with-a-ball-hanging-from-its-trunk-

Photo 2 person holding black frying pan by Keving McChutcheon https://unsplash.com/photos/person-holding-black-frying-pan-APDMfLHZiRA? utm_content=creditShareLink&utm_medium=referral&utm_source=unsplash


 

 

 

 

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