Lion’s mane—scientifically known as Hericium Erinaceus—is an edible mushroom with numerous therapeutic benefits. This superfood can be incorporated into food or drinks or taken as a supplement. Lion's mane's supplements are usually in the form of powders, capsules, and tinctures.
Lion's mane dosage depends on your age, the purity of the mushroom, underlying health status, and desired outcome.
This article will guide you on the optimal Lion’s mane dosage, its functions, and many health benefits. It will also address the best timing for use, and the ways to take the mushroom including how to take Lion's mane powder.
How Much Lions Mane Should You Take?
If you are wondering how much Lions mane to take daily, you are not alone. This question is extremely common among new Hericium Erinaceus users. The Lions mane dosage varies depending on the form.
Lion's mane recommended dosage is 250 to 1000 mg when used in the form of powdered extracts. The oral dose is 1000 to 3000 mg for tablet forms and approximately 5000 mg when the raw fruiting bodies are used in food.
The exact Lion's mane mushroom dosing has not been studied extensively. Human studies determining the side effects of Lion’s mane are also lacking. However, it is considered to be a safe supplement even at higher doses.
The compounds in Lions mane mushroom products have no known side effects. For this reason, unless you are exceeding the recommended Lion's mane mg per day by a very high figure, the product will never compromise your health and safety.
When Should I Take Lion’s Mane?
Lion’s mane benefits influence the ideal time to take the mushroom. For example, if you want to take the mushroom for its energizing effect, the best time to take Lion's mane will be in the morning to early afternoon.
You can take it as a brain-boosting nootropic snack containing caffeine. You can also pair the mushroom with coffee or take coffee infused with the mushroom itself. This guaranteesLion’s mane brain health benefits such as improving your focus, energy, and clarity.
A morning dose of the mushroom will also make you alert, awake, and energized for the entire day. It is important to note that if you are taking this mushroom for such effects, consumption at night should be avoided as it will disrupt your sleep.
Although Lion’s mane mushrooms are traditionally considered to be the most effective when taken in the morning, it is also fine to consume them at night before bed. If you are trying to figure out the answer to the question "is Lions mane a stimulant?" you should know that the answer is a big no. This means that you can take Lion's mane mushroom extracts and not worry about losing your sleep.
Some people prefer takingLions mane before bed because of the calming effect it provides, which translates into a good night’s sleep. Lion’s mane stimulates the synthesis of nerve growth factor (NGF) which is known to support healthy sleep-wake cycles and promote REM sleep. A Japanese pilot study(1), conducted on eight undergraduate students, reported fewer symptoms of insomnia with the use of Lion’s mane at night. There was also a significant decrease in anxiety, depression, fatigue, and irritability in the study subjects.
As the mushroom has a long-term nootropic effect, the benefits can be enjoyed whether you use Lion's mane in the morning or night. However, depending upon your individual preference and the results of the mushroom, you can decide when to take Lion's mane.
What Are the Ways to Take Lion’s Mane?
There are many ways to enjoy Lion’s mane. In traditional Chinese medicine, the mushroom is consumed fresh in its raw form. Today, it is not uncommon for fitness aficionados to consume freshlion’s mane pre-workout.
The downside with this is the availability of fresh mushrooms and sourcing it from a reputable and organic seller. Another way to consume the mushroom is by cooking or by mixing the fruiting body—or the mycelium—with soup. It can be brewed with stock and root vegetables such as carrot and ginger.
Powders, tablets, capsules, and tinctures are made from dried mushrooms. Lion’s mane tablets, each containing 1000 mg of the extract, should be taken three times a day. A cumulative total Lions mane dosage of 3000 mg appears to be the most effective in human studies. The tablets should be taken alongside a light meal.
For people with asthma, allergies, or upcoming surgery, consulting a health professional before using Lions mane supplementation is recommended. Working with a professional should help you enjoy maximum benefits from consuming the mycelium, the fruiting body, or the supplements and tablets.
How To Use Lion’s Mane Powder?
If you do not know how to use Lion's Manemushroom powder, you can start by mixing it with hot water or a cup of warm non-dairy milk. This hot beverage is the easiest and the most commonly used form of mushroom. A teaspoon of the powdered form can be consumed mixed with tea, coffee, and milkshakes. As the surface area of the mushroom powder is higher, the steeping time is reduced. This will also extract more flavors giving you a rich cup of tea or coffee.
A post-workout smoothie is also another option for those looking for a mood lift after hitting the gym. The powder form of Lion’s mane mushroom is versatile and can be added to any food. It can be mixed with cookies and brownies or with hummus and guacamole.
The mushroom powder can also be used in gravy and stews. It should be used once daily for the initial two weeks. Lion's mane dose can be increased to two teaspoons per day. The mushroom powder is often put inside capsules and taken as a pill for its numerous health benefits.
The tincture form of Lion’s mane has a higher absorption rate. This can be used directly under the tongue. It can also be mixed with food and beverages.
The dosage for tincture forms depends on its weight to volume ratio. This is the ratio of the weight of the mushroom extract to the volume of solvent.
A 1:1 ratio of the tincture is more potent than a tincture with a 1:5 ratio as it contains more plant extract and less amount of solvent. Two squeezes of the dropper bulb should be used as a starting dose. This can be increased depending upon the individual needs and observed effects.
Lion’s mane is effective when taken routinely over some time. A consistent pattern of ingestion should be exercised which will allow the superfood to settle and work in the body. The benefits of the mushroom will compound and can be seen only when used over two weeks.
Individuals react differently to mushrooms, so how much Lion's mane to take should be decided after experimenting with the dose and timing.
Lion’s Mane for Specific Diseases
Lion’s mane can be used to treat specific conditions. The recommended Lions mane dosage varies according to the disease. Based on the available data from clinical trials, the fungus can be used in the following:
● Improving Cognitive Functions
Lion’s mane 250 mg tablet (containing 96% dry powder) can be administered three times a day for a total of 16 weeks to improve cognitive function and brain health. The total daily dose of the tablet can be increased up to 3g/day. The fruiting body, in a dose of 5g/day, can be consumed with soups.
A research study conducted in 2008(2), showed that Lions mane mushroom improved symptoms of cognitive impairment in over 30 adults using the Lions mane dosage mentioned in this section.
● For Alleviating Depression and Anxiety
The powdered fruiting body, in the dosage of 2g/day, has shown to be effective in reducing the symptoms of depression and anxiety. The results are observed after 4 weeks of usage. Lion’s mane increases the level of brain-derived neurotrophic factor, which is a natural antidepressant.
● For Improving Symptoms of Alzheimer’s Disease and Dementia
Lion’s mane extract, in the dosage of 5g/day, improves perceptual capacity in patients with dementia. Clinical trials indicate the effectiveness of the fungi in senile dementia, especially Alzheimer’s disease.
The use of Lion’s mane is associated with a decrease in amyloid-beta plaques in the brain. The plaques contribute to the degenerative effects of Alzheimer’s disease.
● For Managing Diabetes
Lion’s mane has been shown to reduce blood glucose levels and increase insulin in animal studies. The use is also associated with a reduction in pain intensity due to diabetic neuropathy.
Although human studies to determine Lion's mane dosage for neuropathy are yet to be done, animal studies show that the ideal Lions mane daily dosage for lowering blood glucose and increasing insulin levels is 500 mg. This suggests that the same Lion's mane dosage per day may be effective in managing the negative effects of neuropathy.
● For Gastrointestinal Disease
A Lion’s mane dosage of 2 gm/day can help mucosal repair and restoration of mucosal barrier function as per animal studies. It has also been associated with a diminished incidence of colitis and gastric mucosal lesions. Clinical studies with similar dosages conducted on humans have reported benefits in chronic atrophic gastritis.
● For Adjuvant Cancer Therapy
Daily intake of Lion’s mane morning or night at dosages of 1-2 gm/day may have anti-cancer properties as suggested by in vitro and animal studies. Taking these dosages of Lion’s mane mushrooms morning or night, the spread of cancer may slow down and result in the death of neoplastic cells. This anticancer effect of Lion’s mane has been evaluated in neoplasms of the white blood cells, breast, liver, stomach, colon, and rectum.
● Other Uses
Long-term usage of Lion’s mane at dosages of an average of 2g/day has hepatoprotective effects on animal models. Similar dosages have also been shown to improve immunity in women and men while also having a beneficial role in obesity, cholesterol levels, multiple sclerosis, and wound healing. Further human studies on Lion's mane daily dosage for these conditions are required.
Lion’s mane is a medicinal mushroom with many benefits in neuronal health. It is a superfood mushroom that can be used in food and beverages or taken as a daily supplement. Adequate research on the optimal Lion’s mane dosage is lacking. It is considered to be a safe superfood. However, let your doctor decide how much Lion's mane per day would be beneficial for you.
- Okamura, Hisayoshi & Anno, Nobuko & Tsuda, Akira & Inokuchi, Takahiro & Uchimura, Naohisa & Inanaga, Kazutoyo. (2015). The effects of Hericium erinaceus (Amyloban® 3399) on sleep quality and subjective well-being among female undergraduate students: A pilot study. Personalized Medicine Universe. 4. (1) 10.1016/j.pmu.2015.03.006
- Mori, K., Inatomi, S., Ouchi, K., Azumi, Y. and Tuchida, T. (2009), Improving effects of the mushroom Yamabushitake (Hericium erinaceus) on mild cognitive impairment: a double-blind placebo-controlled clinical trial. Phytother. Res., 23: 367-372. (2) https://doi.org/10.1002/ptr.2634