Can Lion’s Mane Ease Neuropathy?

What are the health benefits of lion’s mane?

Are there any side effects to taking lion’s mane?

What is neuropathy?

Does lion’s mane help neuropathy?

Can lion’s mane regenerate nerves?

Does lion’s mane stimulate nerve growth?

Does lion’s mane repair myelin?

How can you take lion’s mane for neuropathy?

What are Lion’s Mane Mushrooms?

The lion’s mane mushroom (Hericium erinaceus) is one of the healthiest medicinal mushrooms you can eat. It is commonly grown in North America, Asia and Europe and is widely used in alternative medicine for its beneficial effects on mental, physical and physical well-being and spiritual health.

What are the health benefits of lion’s mane?

Research on potential benefits of lion’s mane mushroom indicates that this fungus has the potential to promote nerve regeneration by stimulating the production of nerve growth factor protein and thereby repair brain cells. It appears to alleviate symptoms of dementia, reduce oxidative stress, and improve brain functions and neuronal health.

Some of the beneficial effects of lion’s mane include:

  • reduces ADHD symptomsanxiety and depressive disorders
  • reduces inflammation and oxidation
  • improves overall brain health and cognitive function, including learning and memory
  • reduces the risk of heart disease and blood clots
  • promotes neurite outgrowth
  • improves mental clarity and protects against mild cognitive impairment and Alzheimer’s disease
  • lowers blood sugar levels and helps treat diabetes
  • encourages apoptosis (cell death) of cancer cells and has the potential to fight cancer
  • improves digestive health and prevents stomach ulcers
  • strengthens the immune system and improves immune function
  • has neuroprotective properties and reduces nerve damage in neurodegenerative autoimmune disorders, such as Parkinson’s disease

What are the side effects of lion’s mane?

There is no scientific evidence of any negative lion’s mane side effects, while centuries of use suggest that this mushroom is perfectly safe for healthy people to eat. However, you should be careful when downloading medicinal mushroomsincluding Hericium erinaceus if you are taking blood thinners.

Since this mushroom prevents blood clotting, Lion’s mane could interact with medications that have the same effect (such as aspirin, heparin and warfarin) and slow down clotting and wound healing. Therefore, it is best to consult a healthcare professional before starting to take lion’s mane if you are taking anticoagulants.

What is Neuropathy??

Neuropathy is nerve dysfunction and damage—usually caused by medication, an autoimmune disease, or a neurological disorder—that affects nerves outside the brain and spinal cord (peripheral nerves). Symptoms usually first affect the nerve endings in the hands and feet and spread upwards to other parts of the body.

Neuropathy is very painful and embarrassing for those unlucky enough to be afflicted with it.

Causes of neuropathy

Some drugs can cause neuropathy, with chemotherapy patients being particularly prone to having neuropathy as a side effect.

Medical conditions that can cause neuropathy include:

  • diabetes (more than half of patients with diabetes will develop some type of neuropathic pain)
  • infections (such as hepatitis B and C, HIV, Lyme disease and diphtheria)
  • hereditary neuropathy disorders (such as Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease)
  • bone marrow disorders
  • trauma and nerve injury
  • tumors pressing on peripheral nerves
  • autoimmune diseases (such as rheumatoid arthritis and lupus)

Symptoms of neuropathy

Symptoms of neuropathy include:

  • numbness and tingling in hands and feet
  • sharp or burning nerve pains;
  • lack of coordination
  • sensitivity to touch
  • muscle weakness and paralysis
  • heat intolerance
  • digestive and bladder problems
  • dizziness and drops in blood pressure

Does lion’s mane help neuropathy??

Yes, Lion’s mane mushrooms have the potential to relieve neuropathic pain. ONE 2019 study examined the effects of Hericium erinaceus on cisplatin-induced peripheral neuropathy.

Cisplatin is one of the most effective anticancer drugs, commonly used to treat solid tumors. However, people who take high doses of it often experience neuropathic pain. This severely limits the dose that cancer patients can receive and, in turn, the effectiveness of the drug.

In this study, researchers gave half of the animals a hot aqueous extract of cisplatin and lion’s mane, and the other half only cisplatin. Animals given Hericium erinaceus showed less signs of cisplatin-induced neuropathy and weight loss.

The neuropathy-relieving activity of lion’s mane warrants further detailed investigation, especially in human subjects. In the meantime, there’s no harm in adding this mushroom to your diet as an alternative remedy if you’re struggling with neuropathic pain.

Lion's mane for neuropathy

Does Lion’s Mane Promote Nerve Growth??

Yes, Lion’s mane appears to promote nerve growth by stimulating the production of nerve growth factor (NGF) proteins.

An in vitro study suggests that one of the properties of the lion’s mane mushroom is its ability to promote neurite outgrowth in PC12 cells. Bioactive compounds isolated from Hericium erinaceus fruits significantly increased the presence of NGF proteins in these cells.

Human studies (such as the double-blind, placebo-controlled study of effects of Hericium erinaceus on mild cognitive impairment) show promising results, but the body of evidence is not strong enough to say with certainty that lion’s mane promotes nerve growth and regeneration in humans.

Does Lion’s Mane Repair Myelin??

Yes, scientific and anecdotal evidence shows this Lion’s mane can repair myelin. The myelin sheath is an insulating layer that forms around nerve cells.

This insulating layer is integral to the proper functioning of nerve cells, and demyelination – damage to the myelin sheath – can cause many neurological disorders (for example, multiple sclerosis).

The beneficial effects of Hericium erinaceus in multiple sclerosis—a disorder caused by demyelination—is well known, and many MS patients use it for its ability to repair the myelin sheath.

Although there are no human studies on the effects of lion’s mane on the myelin sheath, some animal studies have examined the potential benefits of this medicinal mushroom in the myelination process.

For example, an in vitro animal study compared the myelination process in cells with Hericium erinaceus extract with those without. The results show that the lion’s mane mushroom extract induced an earlier initiation of the myelination process and provided a higher rate of myelination.

Nerve regeneration of the lion’s mane

Although there are no human studies on this topic, animal studies suggest this Lion’s mane mushrooms could help regenerate nerve cells.

One animal study published in the International Journal of Medicinal Mushrooms examined the neuroregenerative potential of lion’s mane extract (higher basidiomycetes) in the treatment of peripheral nerve injuries.

Researchers compared the effects of lion’s mane with those of vitamin B12 (commonly used in the treatment of neuropathy) after crush injury to the peroneal nerve of adult rats.

Hericium erinaceus induced faster regeneration of peripheral nerves in the early stages of recovery. These results are promising and warrant more human research on the subject of lion’s mane and nerve regeneration.

The lion’s mane crosses the Blood-brain barrier?

Yes, lion’s mane compounds can cross the blood-brain barrier. The blood-brain barrier serves an important function, the screening of sensitive brain tissues from blood-borne toxins.

While protecting your brain from toxins, the blood-brain barrier also keeps out many beneficial substances.

However, ericeones and erinacins—bioactive compounds found in the fruiting bodies of many functional mushrooms, including lion’s mane—can cross the blood-brain barrier very easily. These beneficial compounds trigger the production of nerve growth factor (NGF) which can provide many benefits to the lion’s mane, including protection against brain injury, nerve regeneration (neurogenesis) and myelination.

Can Lion’s Mane Repair Nerve Damage?

According to research, the lion’s mane mushroom is extremely effective in nerve repair and regeneration. Nerve regeneration helps alleviate the symptoms of neurodegenerative disease such as Alzheimer’s disease, dementia and Parkinson’s disease.

The potential of lion’s mane mushrooms for nerve repair was examined in an animal study in 2011. In this study, rats with peripheral nerve damage were given an oral extract of the fresh fruits of lion’s mane.

The results show that recovery of function, examined by gait analysis, was significantly faster in rats given lion’s mane extract than in the negative control group.

Although further research is needed on human nerve fiber injuries, this study suggests that the activity of the aqueous extract of lion’s mane prevents further injury and accelerates the nerve healing process, at least in animal nervous systems.

What can we say definitively? Lion’s Mane and Neuropathy

Here’s what we know so far about lion’s mane and neuropathy:

  1. Lion’s mane appears to relieve neuropathic pain caused by cisplatin, a common cancer drug.
  2. According to an animal study, Hericium erinaceus can repair peripheral nerves after damage caused by crush injury.
  3. Lion’s mane stimulates the production of nerve growth factors and, in turn, promotes the growth of nerve cells.
  4. Hericium erinaceus also appears to promote remyelination, at least according to animal studies.
  5. More human studies are needed to reveal the underlying mechanisms of lion’s mane and its effects on neuropathy.
  6. Given that there is no downside to eating lion’s mane, its relatively low cost, and high availability, it may make sense to include medicinal mushrooms as a preventative dietary supplement.

Are you interested in Taking lion’s mane for neuropathy?

If you want to try Hericium erinaceus for neuropathy, we suggest you do it with our healthy mushroom granola.

Mushroom  AdaptogenShroomsgranola

Why; Well, it’s delicious, for one. You can choose from three flavors—sunflower cocoa, vanilla almond, and cinnamon—but we recommend getting a bunch of all three because they’re equally delicious.

Most importantly, in a bowl of gluten-free, vegan granola, you get a daily dose of lion’s mane, as well as extracts from cordyceps and chaga mushroomswhich have huge health benefits of their own.

Lion’s Mane and Neuropathy FAQ

How fast does the lion’s mane work?

This depends on why you are taking the mushroom. You can notice it short term effects of lion’s mane after just a few days.

You will likely feel less stressed and more energized within the first two weeks of taking lion’s mane mushroom extract.

However, to reap the long-term benefits of lion’s mane, such as its antioxidant activities, you need to take it consistently for at least a few months.

Can you have too much lion’s mane?

We do not recommend taking more than that recommended dosage of lion’s mane mushrooms, which is anywhere from 250 mg to 5000 mg, depending on what you are taking it for. Taking too much lion’s mane will not cause serious problems, but it can cause stomach upset and diarrhea.

What time of day should you get the lion’s mane?

It is best to take the lion’s mane in the morning or early afternoon. Like many adaptogenic mushrooms, lion’s mane can have energetic effects and improve your focus, which can be quite beneficial during the work day. However, if you take it later in the day, the stimulating effect of lion’s mane can disrupt your sleep and make you restless.

Why does the lion’s mane make me sleepy?

Lion’s mane mushrooms stabilize cortisol levels. This hormone fluctuates throughout the day, making you feel alert during the day and sleepy at night. So, Taking a lion’s mane supplement may help you sleep and promote more restful sleep.

However, the lion’s mane should not tire you during the day, although some confuse the anxiolytic properties of this mushroom with sleepy feeling.

Can I take lion’s mane with other medicinal mushrooms?

Yes, you can take lion’s mane with any other type of medicinal mushroom, including reishi mushroom, cordyceps, chaga, and many others. When it comes to adaptogenic mushrooms, the whole is always greater than the sum of its parts. Therefore, the benefits of lion’s mane can only be enhanced by taking it with other mushrooms and vice versa.

Resources

1. Üstün, R. (2019) Therapeutic effect of Hericium erinaceus in an experimental model of peripheral neuropathy.

2. Zhang, CC. (2015) Chemical constituents from Hericium erinaceus and their ability to stimulate NGF-induced neurite outgrowth in PC12 cells

3. Koichiro, M. (2008) Ameliorative effects of Yamabushitake mushroom (Hericium erinaceus) on mild cognitive impairment: a double-blind placebo-controlled clinical trial

4. Kolotushkina, EV (2003) The effect of Hericium erinaceus extract on the myelination process in vitro

5. Wong, KH. (2012) Neuroregenerative Potential of Lion’s Mane Mushroom, Hericium erinaceus (Bull.: Fr.) Pers. (Higher basidiomycetes), in the treatment of peripheral nerve damage (Review)

6. Wong, KH. (2011) Peripheral Nerve Regeneration After Crush Injury to Peroneal Nerve of Rats by Aqueous Extract of Medicinal Mushroom Hericium erinaceus (Bul.: Fr) Pers. (Aphyllophoromycetideae)

Disclaimer Forij

Leave a comment