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< class="article__title title lion-s-mane-drug-interactions-does-lions-mane-interact-with-medications"> Lion’s Mane Drug Interactions: Does Lion's Mane Interact With Medications?>
Lion’s Mane Drug Interactions: Does Lion's Mane Interact With Medications?
Jul 21, 22
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Author: Sony Sherpa

Lion’s Mane Drug Interactions: Does Lion's Mane Interact With Medications?

  • by Sony Sherpa
  • |
  • 13 min read

Do you take medication? Would you also want to enjoy the health benefits of Lion's mane mushrooms? 

If yes, have you ever wondered about potential interactions between your medications and natural supplements like Lion's mane? This article investigates the possible drug interactions between Lion's mane and various medications. 

Keep reading to learn more!

Why Should You be Concerned About Lion's Mane Drug Interactions?

It's easy to see why so many people are attracted to Lion's mane mushroom supplements: it is a super-nootropic functional food with many touted health benefits. For example, Lion's mane is considered one of the best mushrooms for brain health

However, medicinal mushrooms and other herbal remedies are also associated with some risks. So it is always wise to be aware of it. 

The risks of functional mushrooms are usually higher for those taking prescription or over-the-counter medications for existing health conditions. Therefore, like many mushroom supplements and extracts, drug interactions with Lion's mane is something to consider.

Although the mushroom is safe when taken with other drugs, there are concerns about Lion's mane interactions with medications like blood thinners or the ones that lower blood sugar.

So, if you are someone using these medications to treat a pre-existing condition, you have landed on the right page. For those who don't, keep reading to find out about other medicines that may cause similar reactions. Understanding the possible risks of drug interactions can help you decide if Lion's Mane is right for you.  

Read More: Learn how to use Lion's mane safely to reduce its risks. 

Keep reading below to explore Lion's mane mushroom drug interactions!

Do Lion's Mane Mushrooms React With Any Medications?

There is no adequate information available regarding Lion's mane drug interactions. However, it is still an area of concern, and caution should be exercised when consuming medicine and Lion's mane mushrooms. 

You should also talk to your healthcare provider if you want to start using Lion's mane while taking one or more medications

We will identify specific medications that may react with Lion's mane medicinal mushroom, though these may also interact with many other functional mushrooms and herbal remedies.

Lion's mane mushroom or Hericium Erinaceus may interact with the following medications:

  • Anticoagulant and antiplatelet drugs—These medications help users slow blood clotting.
  • Medications that lower blood sugar—Lion's mane may interact with medicines often used by diabetic people.
  • Anti-anxiety and antidepressant drugs—Hericium Erinaceus extracts have shown that they have a positive impact on depression and anxiety. You may want to know whether you should expect Lion's mane med mushrooms to interact with other meds taken for the conditions. 

Read More: See how Lion's mane treats depression

Below, we will examine Lion's mane interactions with drugs and the available research. 

1. Lion's Mane Extract And Medications That Slow Blood Clotting

Lion’s Mane Extract And Medications That Slow Blood Clotting

Pairing Lion's mane mushrooms with medications that slow or interfere with blood clotting may not be a good idea. The mushroom may have a similar impact on the body, and pairing the fungi with these medications may increase the chance of bleeding and bruising. 

Therefore, before using Lion's mane recipes or supplements, always talk to your doctor if you are taking medications that help with blood clotting. 

The mushroom has also been known to interfere with the activity of platelets(1) in the blood. These are tiny, disc-shaped pieces of cells that form blood clots to slow or stop bleeding. They also help wounds heal.

Platelets rush to the wound whenever you get cut. They become sticky, bind together, and form a clump to stop the bleeding.

But this stickiness (or aggregation) of platelets inside the blood vessels will lead to the formation of blood clots, clogging them. It then predisposes to various vascular diseases like myocardial infarction and stroke.

Hericenone B, in Lion's mane mushroom, has a solid antiplatelet activity, inhibiting platelet aggregation and blood clot formation.

While this should not be an issue for ordinarily healthy individuals and may benefit them, it should be a matter of concern for those that are already taking antiplatelet drugs.

Since both the mushroom and the drugs slow blood clotting, the effects will compound. You may then experience more bruising, nose bleeding, increased bleeding (for instance, when you cut yourself), and slower wound healing.

Some antiplatelets that may interact with Lion's mane include:

  • Acetylsalicylic acid (Aspirin, Entrophen, Asaphen, Novasen).
  • Prasugrel (Effient).
  • Clopidogrel (Plavix).
  • Ticagrelor (Brilinta).

Similar interactions may also be seen with other drugs that interfere with blood clotting. For example, some anticoagulants that may interact with Lion's mane are:

  • Heparin.
  • Warfarin (Coumadin).
  • Enoxaparin (Lovenox).
  • Fondaparinux (Arixtra).
  • Dabigatran (Pradaxa).
  • Rivaroxaban (Xarelto).
  • Apixaban (Eliquis).
  • Edoxaban (Savaysa).  

2. Lion's Mane And Anti-Diabetic Medications

Lion's mane mushrooms are known for lowering blood sugar in people with diabetes. Studies(2) on mice, rats, and humans have shown that fruiting bodies of Lion's medicinal mushroom had an α-glucosidase inhibitory activity, meaning that they exhibit the potential to lower blood sugar levels.

Read More: Learn how Lion's mane aids diabetes treatment

When combined with antidiabetic medications (which also work to lower blood glucose), Lion's mane supplements could cause blood sugar levels to drop dangerously low. This may be a cause of concern as severe hypoglycemia can cause injuries, accidents, and coma and may even prove fatal. 

We don't want to alarm you unnecessarily. But you should know these are serious and rare side effects when Lion's mane and antidiabetic medications are taken simultaneously without supervision. 

You may still be able to take Lion's Mane supplements while taking antidiabetic medications. But you'll need to work closely with your healthcare provider to adjust dosing, timing, and blood sugar monitoring.

Learn More: See the best Lion's mane dosage for different conditions. 

Some diabetes medications that may interact with Lion's mane include:

  • Insulin (Novolin, NovoLog, Novolin N, Tresiba).
  • Metformin (Glucophage, Glumetza, Fortamet).
  • Bromocriptine (Cycloset).

Antidiabetic medication producers have varying brand names on their products. Therefore, do not just conclude that now you can use Lion's mane for anxiety because your drug's name is not mentioned above. 

Keep in mind that you should stop taking Lion's mane mushrooms if you are also using diabetes medications and experiencing numerous cases of low blood sugar. 

Since you can't stop taking diabetes prescription drugs without getting a word from the doctor who prescribed you the medications, stop taking the edible mushroom until you have talked to your doctor and determined how you can benefit from Hericium Erinaceus ingestion without suffering side effects. 

3. Anti-Anxiety And Antidepressant Medication

Anti-Anxiety And Antidepressant Medication

Another question we frequently get asked is can you take Lion's Mane with antidepressants? When it comes to depression, the benefits of Lion's mane medicinal mushrooms are numerous. 

However, suppose you are worried about how Lion's mane mushroom supplements interact with antidepressants. In that case, you may want to know what you are getting into when using Hericium Erinaceus mushroom extracts and depression meds. 

There are no recorded significant Hericium Erinaceus mushroom extracts interactions with antidepressants. However, due to the mushroom's ability to fight depression and anxiety, combining the mushroom with antidepressants or anti-anxiety meds tends to compound the benefits. 

Lion's mane research studies have shown that participants using Lion's mane extracts report fewer signs of depression after four weeks(3) of using the mushroom. 

One more of the health benefits of Lion's mane is that it may also make you feel more relaxed and help improve sleep symptoms—this is usually the case when people take Lion's mane before bed. Better sleep lowers the risk of developing depression and anxiety. 

One study looked at the effects of Hericium Erinaceus on anxiety and depression in post-menopausal women. Those who took the mushroom reported fewer symptoms of stress and anxiety. This showed that Lion's mane might be an effective solution for depression and anxiety. 

However, if you take Lion's mane organic mushroom powder or Lion's mane extract together with antidepressants or anti-anxiety medications, will you experience any adverse effects? 

No studies currently suggest that Hericium Erinaceus mycelium or fruiting body can increase or reduce the effects of anxiety and depression medications

However, more research is still required to determine the exact effect Lion's mane mushroom supplements will have on someone using depression or anxiety meds. Nevertheless, if you want to take the superfood fungus and your prescription medication, make sure you speak with your healthcare professional. 

Who Should Not Take Lion's Mane Mushroom?

Hericium Erinaceus is a safe medicinal mushroom for most people. However, for obvious reasons,it should be avoided by anyone with a history of mushroom allergy. 

Some people should discuss this with their doctors before starting Lion's mane supplements. They are:

  • Pregnant and breastfeeding women (as there are not enough studies to prove the safety of Lion's mane mushroom in such women)

Read more: See what the research says about taking Lion's mane while pregnant

  • Those with a history of bleeding disorders. 
  • Diabetic individuals. 
  • Anyone taking medications for diabetes
  • Those expecting surgery in the next two weeks (for risk of prolonged bleeding)

Anecdotal evidence suggests that Lion's mane mushrooms should also be avoided by those suffering from thyroid disorders. Also, those taking antihypertensive medications may want to avoid the mushroom. 

Read More: See the relationship between Lion's mane and high blood pressure

There is only a limited amount of current information regarding thyroid disorders and high blood pressure meds. Therefore, it would be wise to consult with your physician regarding this. 

FAQs

When Should You Not Take Lion's Mane?

You should not take Lion's mane mushroom if you have diabetes and taking medications to lower blood sugar or have a history of bleeding disorder and taking blood thinning medications. The drugs and the effects of Lion's mane mushroom are similar, which may further worsen the symptoms.

Can You Take Lion's Mane With Other Vitamins?

This is a prevalent question among people new to using Lion's mane. While vitamins can be mistaken for medications—especially in tablet form—they are not medications. Therefore, vitamins are usually not part of the discussion when discussing Lion's mane interactions with drugs. 

However, it is worth noting that overconsumption of a specific vitamin can cause side effects. Therefore, talking to your healthcare professional before adding the mushroom's vitamins and minerals to your diet can help if you use other vitamins. 

Your doctor should help you figure out how to adjust your dosage to avoid Lion's mane side effects and interactions with your vitamins. 

Can You Take Lion's Mane With Antidepressants?

When answering the question, "does lion's mane interact with medications?" we noted that antidepressants are part of Lion's mane interactions with drugs. 

However, this is usually a positive interaction as it boosts the benefits. This suggests taking Lion's mane, and antidepressants would be wise. However, you may still want to talk to a doctor to avoid contraindications. 

Is Lion's Mane A Blood Thinner?

Lion's mane is not classified as a blood thinner. However, the mushroom does affect blood clotting. Therefore, one of Lion's mane mushroom interactions is with other drugs often used to keep blood from clotting. 

If you are using a blood thinning medication, talk to a health professional before using the mushroom to avoid Lion's mane drug interactions associated with blood clotting drugs. 

Final Thoughts

Many mushroom supplements can interact with other medications, potentially worsening some health conditions or even causing adverse reactions. Therefore, it is always best to talk to your healthcare provider before adding Lion's mane (or any new supplements) to your wellness routine. 

This is especially true if you are already on prescription medications, such as antidiabetic drugs. In addition, people taking anti-anxiety medications and antihypertensives and those suffering from thyroid disorders should also be extra careful. 

Have you ever taken Lion's Mane Mushroom? What was your experience? Did you notice any interactions with medications? Let us know your experience with the medicinal mushroom. 

We Would Love To Hear Your Comments Leave A Comment

References

  1. Inhibitory effect of hericenone B from Hericium erinaceus on collagen-induced platelet aggregation, (1) https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/20637576/
  2. Characterization of α-glucosidase inhibitory constituents of the fruiting body of lion's mane mushroom (Hericium erinaceus), (2) https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0378874120330798
  3. Reduction of depression and anxiety by 4 weeks Hericium erinaceus intake, (3) https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/20834180/
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