Lion's Mane mushroom (Hericium erinaceus) has shown potential as a complementary treatment for Parkinson's disease due to its neuroprotective and neuroregenerative properties. Research indicates that Lion's Mane may help prevent neuronal cell death by reducing oxidative stress and inflammation while promoting nerve growth factor (NGF) synthesis, which supports synaptic plasticity and neuronal repair.
In 2020, a modeled study(1) indicated that Lion's Mane (Hericium erinaceus) mycelium might effectively treat damaged brain neurons and aid in recovering from Parkinson's disease. In addition, an earlier study from 2015(2) demonstrated that Lion's Mane and Tiger Milk stimulate the outgrowth of neurites in the brain, spinal cord, and retina cells, fighting Parkinson's disease symptoms and boosting brain function.
Parkinson's disease, a neurodegenerative condition, affects millions worldwide and can cause stiffness, tremors, and changes in speech and walking. While treatments exist to manage its symptoms, people are interested in alternative therapies like Lion's Mane, which could slow its progression with minimal or zero side effects.
This detailed guide will explore Lion's Mane and Parkinson's disease. We will investigate what animal and human studies say about using Hericium Erinaceus to protect yourself from Parkinson's.
Does Lion's Mane Help With Parkinson's?
Lion's Mane contains bioactive compounds—including hericenones and erinacines—that promote new neuron growth, making it a promising supplement for Parkinson'sand other neurodegenerative diseases. By reducing the risk of the disease and improving symptoms, Lion's Mane is worth exploring further. So let's delve into the benefits of Lion's Mane for Parkinson's.
1. Promotes Neurogenesis
Lion's Mane promotes neurogenesis, increasing the production of the Nerve Growth Factor (NGF)(3), a protein that regulates the growth, development, proliferation, and survival of neurons. In addition, Lion's Mane mushroom extract increases the expression of the Brain-Derived Neurotropic Factor (BDNF)(4), another protein that plays an essential role in the growth and survival of neurons.
Neurogenesis influences Parkinson's disease as the loss of nerve cells in the substantia nigra region of the brain is responsible for the condition. Therefore, Lion's Mane's ability to promote nerve regrowth and fight nerve damage guarantees its effectiveness in treating Parkinson's disease.
Preliminary studies suggest that Lion's Mane may help regenerate peripheral nerves and alleviate nerve pain associated with Parkinson's disease. The Lion's mane mycelium and fruiting body contain compounds that support neuronal cell growth and overall neuronal health. By enhancing the body's nervous system function, Lion's Mane may help repair damaged nerves and improve coordination impairment and other symptoms commonly seen in Parkinson's patients.
Compared to other medicinal mushrooms, Lion's Mane stands out for its unique neuroprotective and neuroregenerative properties. By incorporating this medicinal mushroom into a comprehensive management plan, individuals with Parkinson's disease may experience improvements in cognitive function, nerve health, and overall well-being.
2. Combats Oxidative Stress
Oxidative stress(5) degenerates dopamine-secreting neurons in Parkinson's disease. Lion's mane mushroom has potent antioxidant properties.
In an animal with Parkinson's, oral administration of a low dose of Lion's mane mushroom significantly improved oxidative stress(6) and reduced lesions in the parts of the brain (substantia nigra and striatum) that modulate movements.
While this study was conducted on an animal, the results can be replicated in men and women with Parkinson's. By adjusting the Lion's Mane dosage for humans, the mushroom may be able to raise the cognitive function scale and provide noticeable improvements for the symptoms associated with Parkinson's.
3. Fights Mild Cognitive Impairment
People with Parkinson's disease may experience cognitive decline, with symptoms like slower thinking, poor information processing, loss of memory, and loss of attention. However, this traditional Chinese medicine, Lion's Mane, has bioactive ingredients that act on the hippocampus and other brain parts, guaranteeing overall brain function and cognitive improvement.
The anti-inflammatory benefits of the fungi improve blood supply to the brain, leading to improved focus, memory, and mental performance. Moreover, in a study(7), Hericium Erinaceus enhanced cognition in a dose of 250 mg for 16 weeks.
Lion's Mane's nerve growth also ensures improved brain function, with supplementation with Lion's Mane boosting visual recognition memory and fighting diseases like Alzheimer's disease. In addition, these medicinal mushrooms are particularly beneficial in alleviating symptoms associated with neurodegenerative diseases, including Parkinson's disease and Alzheimer's disease. For example, research has demonstrated that Lion's Mane may help protect against dopaminergic lesions typically seen in Parkinson's disease cases.
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4. Improves Motor Function
The primary manifestations of Parkinson's disease are movement abnormalities, including slowness, involuntary movements, and difficulties in walking and balancing the body. Lion's mane mushroom has been shown to provide motor function improvements in animal models with Parkinson's, making the fungus an ideal treatment for patients suffering from motor problems.
Moreover, Lion's mane extracts have promoted peripheral nerve regeneration in clinical trials. The mushroom's ability to repair nerve cells that help move messages from the brain to the spinal cord further demonstrates the mushroom's ability to improve motor function.
5. Lion's Mane Improves Sleep
According to a research study conducted in 2015(8), the lack of sleep impairs hippocampal neurogenesis through the presence of wake-dependent factors. In addition, a different research study(9) determined that prolonged restriction or disruption of sleep may have cumulative effects leading to a significant decrease in hippocampal cell proliferation, cell survival, and neurogenesis.
Taking Lion's Mane before bed promotes a restful night, which, in turn, promotes neurogenesis, promoting the generation of new nerve cells and treating damaged brain neurons. Generating new nerve cells protects against Parkinson's disease and slows its development.
How to Incorporate Lion's Mane into a Parkinson's Disease Management Plan
Choose a Quality Lion's Mane Supplement
Selecting a high-quality supplement from a reputable manufacturer is crucial to receive the most benefits from Lion's Mane. Look for medicinal mushroom supplements made from whole fruiting bodies containing a minimum of 30% polysaccharides.
These supplements should be free of fillers, artificial additives, and allergens. Additionally, consider choosing organic Lion's Mane products that have been third-party tested for quality assurance.
Take An Ideal Lion's Mane Dosage for Parkinson's
While there is no standardized Lion's mane dosage for Parkinson's disease, studies suggest that daily doses of 500 to 3,000 mg may improve brain function and alleviate neurodegenerative disease symptoms.
Lion's Mane has been traditionally used in traditional Chinese medicine for its cognitive-enhancing properties, and recent research has linked its consumption to improvements in mild cognitive impairment. It is essential to consult a healthcare provider before incorporating Lion's Mane into a Parkinson's disease management plan to ensure appropriate dosage and administration.
How to Avoid Lion's Mane Side Effects
Lion's Mane is generally considered safe, with few reported side effects. However, individuals with Parkinson's disease should be aware of potential side effects and interactions.
Some people may experience mild gastrointestinal discomfort or allergic reactions when consuming Lion's mane mushrooms. Therefore, it is essential to monitor for adverse effects, mainly when introducing the supplement to your routine. Also, talk to your doctor to determine if the mushroom is safe.
FAQs About Lion's Mane Parkinson's
Does Lion's Mane Affect Dopamine?
Lion's Mane may indirectly impact dopamine by helping to maintain the health of the neurons that produce it. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter crucial in regulating mood, motivation, and movement.
Lion's Mane may also improve cognitive function and reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety, which could be related to changes in dopamine or other neurotransmitters. However, more research is needed to understand the relationship between Lion's Mane and dopamine fully.
Can Lion's Mane Regenerate Nerves?
Lion's Mane has potential benefits for nerve regeneration, a process by which damaged or injured nerves repair themselves and grow back. Lion's Mane contains compounds such as polysaccharides and hericenones that are believed to stimulate the growth and repair of nerves.
This mushroom may help promote the production of nerve growth factor (NGF), crucial in developing and repairing nerve cells. In addition, some evidence suggests that taking Lion's Mane supplements may improve humans' cognitive and nerve function.
Does Lion's Mane Work Immediately?
The effects of Lion's Mane on an individual may not be immediate. They can vary depending on factors such as the form and dosage of the supplement, the individual's health status, and the intended benefit.
Lion's Mane is not a quick fix or a substitute for medical treatment. Results may take time to show and may vary depending on the individual. Therefore, consulting a healthcare professional before starting any new supplement regimen is essential.
How Does A Lion's Mane Make You Feel?
Some people who have taken Lion's mane mushroom supplements report increased mental clarity and focus; improved memory, reduced anxiety and depression symptoms, and improved overall cognitive function.
Others have reported experiencing improved digestion, better sleep, and reduced inflammation. However, individual results may vary depending on factors such as dosage, the quality of the supplement, and the individual's overall health and wellness.
Lion's mane mushroom can regenerate and preserve neurons, suggesting it could effectively treat Parkinson's, a disease where nerve cells degenerate. While there are limited clinical studies on Lions Mane Parkinson's benefits, results have suggested that the mushroom may fight its symptoms, improving cognition, motor functions, and mental performance.
When taken early enough before the condition's onset, this unique fungus can help reduce the risk of Parkinson's by maintaining the overall health of nerve cells. For maximum benefits when treating Parkinson's, taking an ideal dosage regularly, preferably daily, is recommended. However, taking this functional fungus regularly should be easy, with numerous supplements available, including powder, capsules, and tinctures.
Have you used Lion's mane mushrooms for Parkinson's or other neurodegenerative diseases? What were you trying to treat with the mushroom? What were the results? Let us know in the comments.
- Hericium erinaceus Mycelium Exerts Neuroprotective Effect in Parkinson’s Disease-in vitro and in vivo Models, (1)https://www.researchgate.net/publication/342205958
- Lion's Mane, Hericium erinaceus and Tiger Milk, Lignosus rhinocerotis (Higher Basidiomycetes) Medicinal Mushrooms Stimulate Neurite Outgrowth in Dissociated Cells of Brain, Spinal Cord, and Retina: An In Vitro Study, (2)https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26853959/
- Neurotrophic Properties of the Lion's Mane Medicinal Mushroom, Hericium erinaceus (Higher Basidiomycetes) from Malaysia, (3)https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/24266378/
- Neurotrophic isoindolinones from the fruiting bodies of Hericium erinaceus, (4)https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/33246107/
- The Role of Oxidative Stress in Parkinson’s Disease, (5)https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4135313/
- Neurological Activity of Lion’s Mane (Hericium erinaceus), (6)https://restorativemedicine.org/journal/neurological-activity-lions-mane-hericium-erinaceus/
- Improving effects of the mushroom Yamabushitake (Hericium erinaceus) on mild cognitive impairment: a double-blind placebo-controlled clinical trial, (7)https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/18844328/
- Sleep and adult neurogenesis: implications for cognition and mood, (8)https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/24218292/
- New neurons in the adult brain: The role of sleep and consequences of sleep loss, (9)https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2771197/