Some supplements, such as herbs, minerals, and vitamins, can be combined with ADHD medication to assist in alleviating symptoms such as memory, inattention, mood, and cognitive performance. But what about mushrooms for ADHD?
Mushrooms like Lion’s mane, Chaga, Reishi, and Cordyceps have shown promise in managing ADHD symptoms. These mushrooms help calm the nervous system, enhance the formation of new cells in the brain, and balance the body.
Below we explore the four best mushrooms for ADHD.
Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a behavioral disorder. People with ADHD may appear restless, have difficulty concentrating, and act on impulse.
ADHD symptoms are often seen at a young age and may become more evident as a child's circumstances change, such as starting school. The majority of instances are diagnosed when children are under the age of 12. However, it can be diagnosed later in life.
ADHD is sometimes misdiagnosed as a youngster and only discovered as an adult. ADHD symptoms typically improve with age, but many adults who were diagnosed with the disorder at an early age continue to struggle.
Additional issues, including sleep difficulties and anxiety, may occur in people with ADHD. The most effective ADHD treatment options are multimodal, which are combinations of several diverse, complementary approaches that work together to minimize symptoms. This perfect mix may comprise ADHD medication, exercise, nutrition, and behavioral therapy for one person. Another option is to take ADHD supplements and vitamins, practice mindfulness, and spend a lot of time outside in nature.
Finding and managing the best ADHD medicines requires study, planning, organization, and perseverance.
Potential Benefits Of Mushrooms For ADHD
People suffering from ADHD are increasingly seeking alternative treatments such as medicinal mushrooms. But why are mushrooms such a popular alternative treatment for ADHD symptoms?
Functional or medicinal mushrooms are varieties that have been traditionally utilized for health benefits and are currently being researched for their potential therapeutic properties. Cordyceps, Chaga, Lion's mane, and Reishi, are some of the most well-known functional mushrooms. These mushrooms are frequently ingested as supplements, such as capsules or powders, but they can also be added to food and beverages.
Medicinal mushrooms include a plethora of beneficial bioactive chemicals, including:
- Prebiotic fibers
- Digestive enzymes
- Essential amino acids (building blocks of protein)
- Vitamins B1, B2, B12, and K
- Carbohydrates such as monosaccharides, oligosaccharides, and polysaccharides.
- Hericenones and erinacines
While science is only now beginning to understand many of these substances, some are known to have tremendous effects. For instance, Hericenones, found in Lion's mane fruiting bodies, and erinacines, found in the fungus's mycelium, have tremendous neurotrophic potential.
Below, we outline the four best mushroom supplement for ADHD and their benefits.
Lion's Mane Mushrooms For Cognitive Support
Lion’s mane is first on our list of best mushrooms for ADHD. Hericium erinaceus is a species of functional fungus that has long been utilized for medicinal purposes in Asia. It has increased in popularity in recent years due to its putative brain-boosting properties.
According to research, Lion's mane may positively affect brain chemistry, potentially balancing neurotransmitter levels and improving mood and focus. Hericenones and erinacines are two highly beneficial chemicals found in Lion's mane. These two natural compounds extracted from Lion's mane mushrooms enhance the synthesis of Nerve growth factor (NGF)(1).
NGF has numerous biological actions, including the prevention of neuronal death and the promotion of neurite outgrowth. It is also necessary for the functional maintenance and organization of neurons. Furthermore, changes in NGF have been associated with(2) ADHD.
Furthermore, the anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects of Lion's mane have been demonstrated, which may help protect the brain from damage and improve overall brain health.
We already know that Lion's mane mushroom promotes NGF synthesis. In addition, the mushroom increases the production of brain-derived neurotrophic factors (BDNF). This chemical is essential for the survival and multiplication of neurons.
Changes in BDNF activity have been linked to(3) the development of the primary symptoms of ADHD. Furthermore, reduced BDNF levels in the blood in ADHD may continue throughout adulthood.
This implies that Lion's mane mushroom has been shown to boost NGF and BDNF levels, two critical chemicals involved in the pathophysiology of ADHD. Even if studies on the effects of the mushroom on the illness itself are limited, the equation is quite evident.
Reishi Mushrooms For Stress Reduction
Reishi (Ganoderma lucidum) is a species of functional mushroom that has traditionally been used for its health-promoting properties throughout Asia. The mushroom is thought to be one of the best for anxiety. This highly sought immortality elixir has been connected to soothing and stress-relieving properties.
Chinese Taoist monks have used the herb to change negative energy in the body and cultivate spiritual energy. It is supposed to remove karmic impediments and open crown chakras.
A preliminary clinical trial(4) study found that using Reishi mushroom resulted in statistically significant increases in quality of life. The study groups reported less anxiety and despair, as well as improved physical well-being.
Another study suggests that the mushroom's ability to reduce stress(5) may be due to its bioactive components, triterpenoids, and polysaccharides. These chemicals alleviated symptoms of emotional disturbance, weariness, and irritation while increasing the sensation of well-being.
Furthermore, Reishi is an adaptogen fungus that helps us become stronger in difficult situations. Reishi mushroom is also known to help the adrenal glands, which are positioned at the top of your kidney.
Any stressful experience in our lives causes the adrenals to release cortisol, the stress hormone. Too much cortisol in the body is also harmful. Long-term cortisol elevations can deplete the pleasant chemicals serotonin and dopamine.
Furthermore, ADHD is linked to sleep problems, which can lead to daytime drowsiness and circadian rhythm disorders. There is no established origin of this disruption. However, suspected contributors include hyperactive and inattentive behaviors such as the inability to sit still, using technology at night, and poor sleep hygiene.
A Reishi mushroom extract(6) was examined for its clinical and physiological effects on sleep habits. The findings showed that Reishi mushroom extract increased sleep time, quality, and latency and functioned like benzodiazepine.
Cordyceps Mushrooms For Energy And Focus
Cordyceps is a type of functional fungus that has been utilized in Chinese and Tibetan medicine for centuries. But how are Cordyceps mushrooms and ADHD linked?
Some research has suggested that certain mushroom species may boost cognitive performance and reduce hyperactivity in animals. Cordyceps is also well-known for its immune-boosting and energy-boosting properties.
ADHD can have an impact on motivation. Daily activities might be daunting for some people, and they may need help to finish them. This lack of drive can feel comparable to fatigue and exhaustion, especially if someone believes they cannot keep up with their tasks.
Cordyceps mushrooms are known for their energy-boosting properties and may aid in replenishing energy at the cellular level. Researchers discovered that a Cordyceps extract(7) improved exercise performance in mice by upregulating the ATP regeneration pathway. In our cells, ATP is the fundamental energy-carrying molecule.
Chaga Mushrooms For Overall Well-Being
Chaga is an adaptogen that naturally helps to relax the nervous system. It can aid in the reduction of inflammation, the improvement of adrenal health and exhaustion, and the maintenance of homeostasis. According to research, Chaga may help reduce inflammation and anxiety while also enhancing the health of the adrenal glands, which may help reduce fatigue.
Because of an imbalance between oxidants and antioxidants, the pathophysiology of ADHD is related to oxidative stress(8) and neuroinflammation. Chaga mushrooms(9) contain a lot of black pigment, which contains antioxidants like polyphenols. It is exceptionally high in the antioxidant Superoxide Dismutase (SOD). SOD is highly advantageous to the body because it has been demonstrated to prevent free radical damage.
Precautions And Considerations
Now that we’ve discussed mushrooms ADHD potential benefits, it is essential to understand that they should not replace conventional ADHD treatment. Functional mushrooms should be used alongside ADHD medications for better control of symptoms. It is also a good idea to consult with a healthcare professional before making any significant changes to your ADHD management plan.
Although medicinal mushrooms are generally considered safe for use by research and expert at recommended dosages, they are not for everyone. Some people may experience side effects like itching, rashes, nausea, and vomiting, while for others, it may interact with their medications. So exercise caution while starting medicinal mushroom supplements if you have chronic diseases.
FAQs About Mushrooms For ADHD
How Should Mushrooms Be Prepared To Potentially Enhance Their Effects On ADHD Symptoms?
Edible medicinal mushrooms like Lion’s mane can be incorporated into dishes. However, the best way to take them is as supplements.
Can Mushrooms Be Used As A Natural Alternative To ADHD Medications?
Mushrooms should be used as complementary therapy alongside ADHD medications. They should never replace them.
Medicinal mushrooms for ADHD may offer a natural alternative for supporting focus and attention and reducing anxiety and stress. While more research is needed to understand their effects and determine appropriate dosages fully, early studies are promising. You should always talk to your doctor before trying a dietary supplement.
- Hericenones and erinacines: stimulators of nerve growth factor (NGF) biosynthesis in Hericium erinaceus, (1)https://www.researchgate.net/publication/240235316
- Alterations of Growth Factors in Autism and Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, (2)https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5507945/
- Alterations of Growth Factors in Autism and Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, (3)https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5507945/
- Spore Powder of Ganoderma lucidum Improves Cancer-Related Fatigue in Breast Cancer Patients Undergoing Endocrine Therapy: A Pilot Clinical Trial, (4)https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/22203880/
- A randomized, double-blind and placebo-controlled study of a Ganoderma lucidum polysaccharide extract in neurasthenia (5)https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/15857210/
- Extract of Ganoderma lucidum potentiates pentobarbital-induced sleep via a GABAergic mechanism, (6)https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/17383716/
- Beneficial Effect of Cordyceps militaris on Exercise Performance via Promoting Cellular Energy Production, (7)https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/33312018/
- Role of Oxidative Stress and Neuroinflammation in Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, (8)https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7690797/
- Antioxidant effect of Inonotus obliquus, (9)https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/15588653/