Out of the kitchen, into the pharmacy, the gourmet mushroom Lion’s Mane (Hericium erinaceus) with its unique flavor resembling lobster or shrimp appears to also possess likewise unique medicinal properties. It has been found to stimulate nerve and myelin regeneration, which may be beneficial in many neurological conditions. World renowned medicinal mushroom expert Paul Stamets suggests its potential application in conditions such as Alzheimer’s, dementia, multiple sclerosis and muscular dystrophy. (134)
Lion’s Mane Mushroom (Hericium erinaceus) is known in the wild from North America, Europe, China and Japan. It grows on many species of deciduous trees, in particular oak, walnut, beech, maple and sycamore.
“Erinacines” is the name of the medicinal compounds from Hericium erinaceus that are being researched for their neurological health benefits. They are small enough to pass through the blood brain barrier, which or course is a requirement in order to effect any healing on the myelin sheaths or neurons. (152, 153, 154)
Two Japanese patents exist relating to Hericium erinaceus extracts; one from the 1990′s for an extraction process of these compounds yielding an extract known as “Nerve Growth Stimulant Factor.” (150, 151) A more recent one from 2004 is for a water extract of Hericium erinaceus, also used for its nerve regenerating properties. (155)
In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), Hericium erinaceus has historically been prescribed not only for neurological conditions but also for ailments of the digestive tract, in particular for cancers of the digestive organs, such stomach cancer and liver cancer.
Two modern studies have confirmed this ancient wisdom. One done in 1985 showed positive results for treating atrophic gastritis. Another conducted a decade later, in 1995, showed some ameliorating effect on hepatoma, with a marked life extension of treated patients. (156)
Note: The statements on this page have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This article is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. Never use any medicinal mushroom or herb without prior approval by medical doctor.
Credit to Paul Stamets for research and source material.
Dr. Rafael has been engaged in the natural health field since finishing Chiropractic College in the mid-90′s. He currently specializes in medicinal fungi, including Hericium erinaceus extract (Stamets’), in partnership with the U.S. company Cordyceps Reishi Extracts, LLC. To find the research references for this article, go to the Lions Mane Supplement page and click on any number indicating a reference.Tags: Alzheimer's, biology, Cancer, dementia, disease, fitness, herbal, herbs, medicine, multiple sclerosis, mushroom, Nutrition, self help, Supplements, wellness
May 04 2012 09:37 am | Supplements