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How to Add Lion’s Mane into Your Diet

by Melissa Bell
4 minutes read

Lion’s mane mushroom can be added to your daily food intake to give it that extra boost of nutrients. While the fungus isn’t exactly in everyone’s grocery list just yet, get ahead in the game by trying out some recipes with lion’s mane.

Scientifically known as hericium erinaceus, lion’s mane mushroom doesn’t look anything like a normal mushroom. It has a wild appearance and pretty much resembles the shape of the head of the king of the jungle.

You can say that this fungus is king in the world of gourmet cooking too; many five-star restaurants regard the lion’s mane mushroom a delicacy best eaten with seafood. Dishes that feature crabs, fish, and lobster have their flavors highlighted because of the addition of lion’s mane.

Lion's Mane Mushroom

Why Adding Lion’s Mane Mushroom is Beneficial

If you’re asking yourself why adding lion’s mane to your diet will even do any good, here are reasons why the plant’s been garnering some attention recently:

If you want to stay mentally sharp

Admit it — you’re a multitasker. Somehow our brains have been wired to think and do many tasks at the same time. We think it’s optimal or efficient, but multitasking doesn’t actually get the work done. After all, if you have a presentation to make, think of this week’s grocery list, and try to remember that you have a yoga class to go to later, then it can be pretty difficult to zero in on what you want to focus on.

Lion’s mane mushroom can help!

The plant is said to stimulate nerve growth factor (NGF) production, a neuropeptide that helps the cells in our brain process and transmit information. This brain processing wonder food can help you concentrate on tasks where your attention needs it the most.

Feel the energy

As much as you enjoy a cup of joe, the crash that the caffeine gives can be a bit of letdown. Not to mention the jitters that sometimes come with drinking too much coffee. Lion’s mane mushroom is said to give a steady stream of energy minus the crash. Some people swear by adding lion’s mane mushroom powder to their coffee to help sustain energy levels throughout the day.

The antioxidants found in lion’s mane works at cellular levels, thus giving your cells that much needed boost to help get rid of free radicals. Energy is transported through the cells as well so when your cells are renewed, the transfer of energy works almost flawlessly.

If you find yourself fatigued after hitting the gym, consuming lion’s mane might do the trick. It seems to lessen lactic acid, the chemical that causes fatigue, in your blood.

Feel Calm, Cool, and Collected

In today’s busy world, managing stress levels can be, well, stressful. It can be potentially harmful to our bodies if we don’t learn how to manage our stress. Sometimes it can lead to depression and anxiety, which lion’s mane can help out with. Over time, people who have consistently included lion’s mane into their diet have reported to be more calm.

Why is it Hard to Look for Lion’s Mane Mushroom?

There’s a reason why you will hardly see lion’s mane mushrooms in your grocery store. This mushroom, albeit being a common fungus, is not very easy to handle. The beautiful scraggly head can bruise pretty easily if it’s handled roughly.

There is also the issue of its shelf life. Lion’s mane mushrooms tend to begin to rot fairly quickly. Your best bet is to look for fresh mushrooms at farmers’ markets or to pick one yourself when you hiking (though this isn’t advisable as some mushrooms are poisonous).

The lion’s mane mushroom grows abundantly in North America and has other names: Bearded Tooth and the Japanese Yamabushitake.

Lion’s Mane Mushroom Extracts

You may be curious enough yourself to give this superfood a try and your best bet is to buy it in pill or powder form. This way you don’t have to worry about shelf life and ways of how to prepare it. You get all the benefits of the plant in a convenient pill!

There have been no reported side effects from taking lion’s mane mushrooms. It does not produce any psychedelic effects and the worst that can possibly happen to you is that you develop an allergic reaction.

Despite this, make it a point to consult with your medical practitioner first before taking lion’s mane mushroom, or any new supplement for that matter. You may have some medications that will counteract the desired effects you are after from lion’s mane mushrooms.

Lion’s mane mushroom powders, extracts, and pills are widely available but please buy from a reputable store. You are guaranteed authenticity and a high quality product if you do so. Though it may be on the pricey side, don’t forget that you are making an investment in your health.

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