Some of the healthiest things for you, come from nature. It is also true that some of these things may not always look so appealing. This is all too true for the lion’s mane mushroom. 

Don’t feel bad if you’ve never heard of it, as it’s hardly the most popular mushroom. Looking just like its name suggests, the lion’s mane mushroom is fun to see and good for you. Once you learn why, you’ll be telling everyone about it.

Looks Like a Lion, Strong Like a Lion

Originally used in ancient Chinese medicine, the lion’s mane mushroom has been known to provide health benefits for centuries. Many traditional practices are now gaining attention in the West because science is providing support to back up all the claims.

Mushrooms in general have long been used for health benefits. The lion’s mane mushroom has been used to help with:

♦ Gut nourishment 

♦ Fortification of the spleen

♦ Optimal digestion

♦ Relief from occasional indigestion

♦ Healthy cellular aging

♦ Promotion of normal energy 

♦ Proper sleep

You won’t usually find the lion’s mane mushroom in the produce section of your local store because it looks a little odd. The shaggy appearance looks just like a mane and nothing like an edible food, unlike the many other delicious mushrooms available.

a group of mushrooms

The fact that it looks so dissimilar to the mushrooms we know can make it intimidating, and this may be part of the reason why many avoid it. However, as you learn about the benefits, you will find yourself looking past its appearance.

Having a Lion on Your Side

The high antioxidant content of lion’s mane mushrooms allows them to reduce typical oxidative damage to promote whole-body health. By reducing typical oxidative stress and preventing unwanted immune responses, the compounds in lion's mane can promote the health of cells and tissues throughout your body.

Heart health: Lion’s mane mushrooms contain nutrients that help maintain healthy cholesterol levels. The maintenance of healthy blood lipid levels supports arterial health, proper blood flow and cardiovascular function.

Cognitive health: Lion’s mane mushrooms contain polysaccharides that have the ability to support healthy brain cell function and were found to support memory, focus, concentration, and a healthy mood. 

Immune health: Lion’s mane mushrooms provide nourishment to your gut microbiome, which is the core of immune system function. By creating microbial diversity, your immune system is better able to defend against environmental threats.

a person sitting on the grass

Gut health: By helping to maintain a healthy gut balance, you can promote healthy digestion and nutrient absorption, and relieve occasional indigestion, gas, and bloating. 

Healthy aging: By reducing typical oxidative stress, lion’s mane mushrooms help protect cells and tissues in the body to promote healthy aging.

The Bottom Line

An awkward appearance may not make lion’s mane mushrooms a popular option for the dinner plate, but they are a great option for your health. As part of a healthy lifestyle with balanced diet, regular exercise, and everyday stress management, a these mushrooms can promote heart health and more.