Lion's Mane Mushroom & Your Brain
Lion’s mane mushrooms are white and shaggy, and resemble a lion’s mane as they get larger, which is where their name comes from.
These mushrooms have been used for culinary and medicinal purposes in various Asian countries for centuries.
Here are five excellent benefits of lion’s mane mushrooms:
1. Potential Benefits Against Cardiovascular Disease
Cardiovascular disease is a widespread and nuanced public health threat that leads to disability and early death. It is the leading cause of death worldwide, taking roughly 18 million lives annually.
Interestingly, some research suggests that lion’s mane mushrooms can influence some risk factors, leading to better cardiovascular outcomes.
Most notably, the mushroom can promote fat breakdown and contribute to healthy blood triglyceride levels.
2. Neuroprotective Effects
While not as widespread as heart-related issues, neurodegenerative disease is a considerable problem. Various types of dementia affect people, primarily after the age of 60.
Interestingly, these conditions often begin to develop much earlier and take decades to show signs.
The good news is that lion’s mane mushrooms can offer neuroprotective effects and reduce the risk of dementia. Specifically, the mushroom stimulates the development of new brain calls and connections.
3. Beneficial For People Struggling With Anxiety And Depression
Anxiety and depression are widespread conditions that affect millions of people worldwide.
Data suggests that up to a third of adults in developed countries deal with some form of anxiety or depression every year.
Thanks to their ability to promote brain cell development, lion’s mane mushrooms are thought to improve hippocampus function. The brain region is responsible for learning, memory, emotions, etc.
Some data suggests that various stimuli easily influence the hippocampus, and neurological disorders can damage it.
4. Could Help Manage Diabetes Symptoms
Diabetes is a condition characterized by an inability of the body to control blood sugar levels. If left untreated, chronically-elevated blood glucose can cause irreversible damage to nerves and major organs.
The primary way for patients with diabetes to manage the condition is through insulin injections, but other tactics can also be beneficial. One such example is the consumption of lion’s mane mushrooms.
These mushrooms can lower blood sugar levels, even at low doses. One way the mushroom achieves the effect is by blocking the function of alpha-glucosidase––an enzyme that breaks down carbs in the small intestine.
By impairing the enzyme’s function, the body cannot absorb as much glucose from food.
5. Anti-Cancer Effects
Cancer is characterized by the uncontrollable multiplication of cells that spread to various bodily tissues, preventing the body from carrying out its essential processes.
Promising research suggests that lion’s mane mushrooms can offer benefits against cancer by killing cancer cells and slowing down the rate at which they multiply and spread.
However, it’s worth noting that most of the findings are from in-vitro research.
While we certainly need more research before concluding, lion’s mane mushrooms have been around for a long time and show promise for various things.
Most notably, these mushrooms can protect against cardiovascular disease, neurodegenerative conditions, and cancer. In addition, lion’s mane mushrooms could benefit people struggling with anxiety and depression, as well as diabetics.