What is lion's mane?
Lion’s mane is a fantastic fungi and a mushroom like no other. It can be used for cooking because of it’s “meat-like” texture and subtle umami flavour. But it’s also a powerful medicinal mushroom that can stimulate growth of new neurons. (ie Brain Cells)
Lion's Mane Benefits
Lion’s mane benefits as a medicinal mushroom:
- Increased Nerve Growth Factor (NGF)
- Better Memory
- Natural Mood Booster
- Strengthens Immune System
Nerve Growth Factor (NGF)
Nerve growth factor is a neurotrophic process within the body that regulates the growth of neurons. This process is responsible for maintenance and longevity of neurons that help keep our brain & body happy.
As we grow older, new cells are being created as old cells die off. The ratio changes as we get older and less new cells are being generated while old cells are dying at a faster rate.
When this happens we can begin to experience memory loss and a decrease in our cognitive abilities.
Using lion’s mane mushrooms on a regular basis can help to stimulate the growth of new neurons but it also helps protect the existing cells that we’ve worked so hard on.
Your brain is a living organism that is constantly making new cells and shedding the older ones. Lion’s mane can help our bodies regulate this process so it doesn’t happen too quickly.
As a result, we are able to retain more information in our memory bank.
Many people have reported more mental clarity after taking lion’s mane on a regular basis. This clarity allows for easy access to stored information.
Resulting in a faster response time in general, but with much less cell “shedding” and more memories being retained.
Natural Mood Booster
Some people have reported having less “brain-fog” as one of the benefits of using lion’s mane mushrooms. Starting the day with more mental clarity could be one of the reasons why lion’s mane is a natural mood booster.
Another could be it’s effect on neuroplasticity in our brains. This function enables our cells to stay alive longer and for new cells to be healthier as well.
Everyone has been in a bad mood before and sometimes you aren’t even sure why. Your mood doesn’t always reflect what’s going on around you – it can also be affected by what’s happening inside your body.
The brain is our most vital organ and without it.. nothing else would work!
So if you find yourself in a bad mood often it could be an internal problem that needs fixing. Perhaps give it a try and see some of the lion’s mane benefits first hand.
Strengthens immune system
Another thing about medicinal mushrooms is they can have a positive impact on the immune system too. They also manage to do this in several ways.
Firstly, by reducing inflammation and oxidation that has been know to contribute to heart disease, diabetes and autoimmune diseases like arthritis.
Second, a study involving mice has indicated that lion’s mane can encourage growth of beneficial gut bacteria which can strengthen the immune system.
Also, another study with mice has shown greater activity in the intestinal immune system.
using lion's mane mushrooms
Here are some ways that you can use lion’s mane and experience some of it’s benefits:
Cooking with lion’s mane is as easy as any other mushroom and you can make some incredible tasting dishes. The texture of lion’s mane is highly sought after because of it’s versatility and ability to mimic “meat-like” textures.
There some great recipes out there for crab cakes using lion’s mane or maybe these tacos are more your speed?
The only issue with cooking lion’s mane fresh is that it can be difficult to find. Most grocery stores don’t carry it, but some specialty stores might. However, your best bet is going to be a local farmer’s market with a specialty mushroom vendor.
Taking a lion’s mane tincture (extract) is an extremely easy way of incorporating the benefits of this medicinal mushroom into your current lifestyle.
All you need is a few drops a day mixed in with your favorite beverage. (coffee, tea, juice, smoothie, lemon water) Heck, you can even add it to soups, stir-fry or pasta sauces.
The other good thing about tinctures is they are very portable. Take them with you wherever you go and you will never be left without the benefits of lion’s mane.
Perfect if you area busy person who is always on the go. Adding just a single cup of coffee to your day (which you do anyways) can help improve memory, mental clarity and cognitive abilities.
When used regularly this can have a positive impact on your mood and your immune system. Try this coffee and start experiencing the benefits of this amazing medicinal mushroom.
This is my favorite option because it’s a natural form of lion’s mane that hasn’t been extracted. It’s incredibly easy to add a spoonful of lion’s mane powder into your smoothies. You can aslo steep it into a delicious sipping broth, or mix with tea leaves to create your own delicious blend.
Best time of day to use lion's mane
It’s a good practice to take your lion’s mane twice a day. In the evening before bed when you are relaxed to help stimulate brain recovery while sleeping. Also, in the morning when you first wake up.
In the evening or before bed is a good time to experience the benefits because our brains are shutting down and going into recovery mode.
While our brains are recovering there are new neurons being formed naturally. Lion’s mane can benefit this process by encouraging the growth of healthy new brain cells while protecting our existing cells.
The mornings are a crucial time for our bodies and maintaining proper nutrition can have and major impact on our mood too. So taking lion’s mane first thing in the morning should absolutely be part of your daily routine.
my favorite mushroom
As a gourmet mushroom for cooking, lion’s mane is a delicious and “meat-like” ingredient that you absolutely must try. It absorbs flavours extremely well and can be cooked in a variety of ways. Also, because it’s relatively new to the culinary world I am sure there are many interesting creations that have yet to be imagined.
Medicinally, I think it’s super important to be taking lion’s mane on a regular basis. The benefits for your brain are tremendous and can only have a positive impact on the rest of your body. Our brains are the most important organ and are responsible for all of our bodies functions and processes .
Protecting your brain should be your number one priority, especially since you aren’t getting any younger. It could be the life hack your brain, body and spirit have been looking for.