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While you might think the name ‘Lion’s Mane’ refers to some type of African safari, it’s actually one of the newest superfoods to come out of North America, China, Japan, and Europe.

Named because they look like a lion’s mane as they grow (white and shaggy!), this is an edible mushroom that has traditionally been used in both cuisine and medicines in Asian countries like China, India, Japan and Korea.

Now one of the latest food trends and have become known as a superfood, Lion’s Mane mushroom has caught attention worldwide as they are believed to pack a range of positive health benefits and offer a delicious flavor.

If you’re traveling and find a dish with Lion’s Mane on the menu, be sure to take the opportunity to try it. Here are just 4 reasons why Lion’s Mane mushrooms are thought to be so special.

4 Reasons Why Lion’s Mane is Special

#1 Health Benefits of Lion’s Mane Mushrooms

Lion's Mane Mushroom RF

Lion’s Mane mushrooms have been used throughout history to treat digestive problems and support good gut health. 

It’s only in recent years though that people have thoroughly researched and discovered that they provide a much more comprehensive range of benefits than initially thought.

One study found that Lion’s Mane mushrooms can affect the production of nerve growth which is responsible for the continued maintenance and growth of neurons within the body.

Further research concluded that as a result, Lion’s Mane mushrooms could help to increase healing and recovery from wounds.

#2 Cognitive Benefits

Lion’s Mane mushrooms are also believed to positively impact cognitive function and support the body’s natural immune system and response. While further studies are needed, it is hoped that Lion Mane mushrooms could be used as a form of treatment for degenerative cognitive disorders and memory issues.

It has been found that mushroom extracts can reduce the symptoms of memory loss and, in some cases, prevent beta-amyloid plaque damage. The buildup of beta-amyloid is understood to be one of the leading causes of conditions like Alzheimer’s.

Lion’s Mane mushrooms also have natural anti-inflammatory properties, which could further the cognitive benefits. Inflammation is thought to play a role in cognitive decline, and by naturally reducing such inflammation, the rate of decline can also be slowed down.

Many people choose to incorporate Lion’s Mane products, like capsules, into their diet to improve or prevent the degradation of cognitive function. While it is not known precisely how it affects brain functions and how much is needed, it is still thought to be a supplement with potential. 

#3 Lion’s Mane Mushrooms and Stress

Lions Mane Mushroom RF

Another area currently being researched is Lion’s Mane mushrooms’ effect on mental health disorders such as chronic stress and anxiety. This is another promising benefit that is helping to fuel the growing interest in fungi.

One study decided to investigate this. It involved two groups, one who was given Lion’s Mane cookies for four weeks and another group given a placebo.

By the end of the four weeks, the group who had been given Lion’s Mane was found to have reduced levels of anxiety and irritability compared to at the beginning of the study.

It was concluded that Lion’s Mane could positively affect mental health when consumed consistently over an extended period of time.

People are continuously searching for natural remedies that help to reduce stress levels, and Lion’s Mane mushrooms look like they could be a promising option.

#4 Many Different Ways to Benefit from Lion’s Mane Mushrooms

Lions Mane Mushroom Cooked RF

One thing that sets Lion’s Mane mushrooms apart from other wellness products is that they can be consumed both as actual food and in the form of medical supplements.

This makes it much easier to incorporate Lion’s Mane mushrooms into your diet regularly.

While Lion’s Mane mushrooms are a super tasty meat substitute, eating them every single day quickly becomes tiring. Luckily, products like Lion’s Mane Mushroom Capsules help maintain the fungi’ benefits without actually having to eat it regularly.

Eating Lion’s Mane mushrooms occasionally as a treat can provide some of the fungi’s health benefits without overdoing them.

However, for anyone looking to use Lion’s Mane mushrooms as a dietary supplement, regular consumption is essential. Being able to switch between capsules and eating Lion’s Mane mushrooms helps maximize potential health benefits. 

Megan is an Australian Journalist and award-winning travel writer who has been blogging since 2007. Her husband Mike is the American naturalist and wildlife photographer behind Waking Up Wild; an online magazine dedicated to opening your eyes to the wonders of the wild & natural world.

Having visited 100+ countries across all seven continents, Megan’s travels focus on cultural immersion, authentic discovery and incredible journeys. She has a strong passion for ecotourism, and aims to promote responsible travel experiences.



  1. Wow these looks good, Meg. Perfect for vegetarians like me and my wife, too. We are always on the lookout for new veggie fare, especially satiating mushrooms. Definitely a superfood that helps energize folks while keeping ’em feeling full.

    Thanks for sharing.


    • Defnitely keep an eye out! Thanks for reading Ryan :)

  2. Nice article. Here’s another important thing about Lion’s Mane. Nerve growth factory, or NGF is a neurotrophin — a small family of protein-like molecules that secrete into the nervous system to keep neurons healthy. NGF is vitally important because it is responsible for the maintenance, development and even regeneration of neurons (brain cells).

    • Thanks for sharing Nick :)

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