Lion’s Mane mushroom stands out among the many health-boosting fungi, renowned for its versatility in the kitchen and centuries-long traditional use. Its unique appearance, resembling creamy dangly threads, hides a subtle seafood-like flavour when fresh. Today, it’s popular in various forms – dried in coffee or hot cacao mixes, and even in spice blends.

It has long been revered in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) for its various health benefits. It is nutritive for the five internal organs—liver, lung, spleen, heart, and kidney—promoting good digestion, general vigour, and strength. In both China and Japan, it is frequently added to medicinal dishes to alleviate conditions such as indigestion, neurasthenia, and gastric ulcers. This mushroom fortifies the spleen and nourishes the stomach, making it particularly useful for symptoms of Qi deficiency, such as insomnia, weakness, and decreased performance. Centuries ago, Buddhist monks praised the Lion’s Mane for its cognitive benefits, believing it enhanced focus and clarity. In China, it was hailed as an overall tonic for organ function and gut health.

Modern science has homed in on the Lion’s Mane for its potential in brain health. Compounds like erinacines and hericenones found in this mushroom stimulate nerve-growth factors (NGF) and brain-derived neurotrophic factors (BDNF). These proteins are crucial for nerve cell functioning, and Lion’s Mane appears to promote their synthesis, aiding in neurite outgrowth.

NGF is pivotal in neuronal cell survival, but certain treatments can’t cross the blood-brain barrier. Lion’s Mane, however, shows promise in naturally enhancing NGF, crucial in managing cognitive decline and dementia disorders.

Moreover, research indicates Lion’s Mane supports myelination – the protective covering around neuronal axons. This support bolsters neural signals, crucial for a healthy nervous system. Interestingly, it appears to enhance myelination without impeding nerve cell growth or causing toxicity.

Lion’s Mane’s medicinal properties don’t stop there. It acts as a prebiotic, fostering a healthy gut-brain axis by supporting nerve growth, aiding in inflammatory responses, and maintaining a balanced microbiome.


The major actions of Lion’s Mane Mushroom include being a tonic for overall health, neuroprotective, neurotrophic, immune modulating, and gastroprotective. Additionally, it exhibits anti-inflammatory properties, contributing to its wide array of therapeutic benefits.

Incorporating Lion’s Mane into one’s wellness routine can yield a multitude of health benefits, ranging from cognitive support to immune enhancement and beyond. With its rich history in traditional medicine and growing body of scientific research, Lion’s Mane Mushroom continues to captivate interest as a natural remedy for promoting overall health and well-being.


  • Cognitive Support: Lion’s Mane Mushroom is especially beneficial for supporting cognition, particularly in the elderly and individuals with mild cognitive impairment or dementia.
  • Tonic for Fatigue: It serves as a tonic for those experiencing fatigue and debilitation, providing a natural energy boost.
  • Mood Enhancement: This mushroom has mood-enhancing properties, contributing to overall emotional well-being.
  • Immune Function: Lion’s Mane Mushroom can be used as an adjunctive treatment to enhance immune function, particularly beneficial for individuals experiencing recurrent infections or persistent viral infections.
  • Digestive Health: It offers relief for indigestion and gastritis, making it a valuable addition to gastrointestinal health protocols.


Hericium erinaceus contains a variety of active constituents, including polysaccharides, primarily branched β-glucans, and terpenoids known as hericenones. Hericenones have been extensively studied and shown to stimulate nerve growth factor (NGF), making Lion’s Mane Mushroom particularly intriguing for its neuroprotective and neurotrophic properties.


  • Lion’s Mane has a history of safe consumption for centuries, with no reported long-term toxicity. Clinical studies found it safe, but its safety during pregnancy and lactation isn’t established, so it’s not advised for use then.
  • Caution is advised for those with bleeding disorders or thrombocytopenia as high doses may increase bleeding risk due to its anti-platelet activity. Before surgery, discontinuing Lion’s Mane two weeks beforehand is recommended.
  • There’s a theoretical concern regarding interaction with anticoagulant/antiplatelet medications, as Lion’s Mane might further inhibit platelet aggregation.

References: PubMed – PMC5987239, Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery Foundation – Cognitive Vitality

The information provided is for educational purposes and is not intended to be a substitute for medical treatment. Consult your medical care provider before using herbal medicine, particularly if you have a known medical condition, are on any medication, and if you are pregnant or nursing.