Lion's Mane Mushroom Benefits: A Tea Drinker’s Guide

Lion's mane mushroom (Hericium erinaceus) is a type of medicinal, adaptogenic mushroom. It’s been used in traditional Eastern medicine for thousands of years [1].

So, what’s so special about this fungi anyway? Studies & anecdotal evidence reveal that lion’s mane mushroom benefits range from improved focus to improved brain health. It’s also been shown to exhibit antioxidant and neuroprotective effects that slow and reduce symptoms of memory loss in mice, and even prevent neuronal damage [2].

Mushroom tea is one of the most popular and oldest ways to consume these mushrooms, and it also happens to be one of the most delicious. In this post, we’re going to go over the amazing qualities of this functional mushroom along with benefits and teas you can try.

History of Lion’s Mane Mushroom

The lion’s mane mushroom is named for its appearance: it looks exactly like the mane of the powerful lion! 

They’re white in color with long and shaggy tendrils making up its “mane.” It grows naturally in North America, Asia, and Europe, but has mainly been used for its medicinal properties in Asia. Only recently did use of this amazing mushroom become more well-known in Western parts of the world.

Traditionally, this mushroom was often reserved for royalty and monks. It was even called “yamabushitake” in Japan, which means “Mountain Priest Mushroom.”

Those who eat this mushroom describe the flavor to be similar to seafood, but only when it’s cooked! When brewed as a tea, it has a very mild & subtlety sweet flavor that pairs incredibly well with spices including turmeric, and ginger.

As we mentioned earlier, lion’s mane mushroom has a long history in traditional medicine. It’s often consumed raw or in the form of powders or capsules. But brewing it as a tea has a long-standing tradition, and if you love a cup of tea, it’s certainly the easiest and most enjoyable way to enjoy the lion’s mane mushroom benefits everyday. 

Our Lion’s Spice is a full-bodied blend that’s incredibly nourishing with turmeric, ginger, and black peppercorn - a winning combination that has been found to enhance the absorption of curcumin by 2,000% [3] and have anti-inflammatory properties [4]. Our Lion-Maitake Clarity blend offers the healing benefits of both mushrooms with the flavors of herbaceous tulsi. Such a treat!

Historically, lion’s mane was used to treat various types of cancer as well as “nourish the spleen” and “fortify the gut.”

These traditional uses are surprisingly close to their modern uses and modern scientific findings as well.

Lion’s Mane Mushroom Benefits

We know that these mushrooms have been used in traditional medicine for thousands of years. Now, let’s take a look at some benefits supported by scientific studies as well as by lion’s mane users from around the world! 

Reduce Inflammation 

According to a 2012 scientific study, lion’s mane mushrooms have a significantly high antioxidant concentration [5]. 

Antioxidants have a number of benefits for our health [6]. This includes protecting your cells against damage & oxidation and reducing inflammation. Because lion’s mane mushrooms are so high in antioxidants, it’s believed that they are able to reduce inflammation and cellular damage throughout the body.

One study showed that rats given lion’s mane saw a great reduction in inflammation of the brain and even reduced their risk of stroke [7]. Another study showed mice with ulcerative colitis had significant reduction in intestinal inflammation when consuming lion's mane [8]. 

While these studies are in animal models, it does show the great potential of these mushrooms that could translate to humans.

Inflammation is linked to a number of diseases and health issues, including:

  • Heart disease
  • Cancer
  • Stroke
  • Chronic diseases (lupus, arthritis, etc)

Thus, reducing inflammation can translate into health benefits for many people.

Immune System Boost 

The antioxidants in these mushrooms are also believed to help boost your immune system. This may help you fight off disease and stay healthy.

Studies show that compounds in lion's mane (like beta glucans and polysaccharides) could be what causes this immune boost [9].

Other studies in animals have shown that these mushrooms also have antimicrobial and anti-bacterial properties [10].

Focus & Clarity

Lion’s mane mushroom has a long history with Buddhist monks who are known to use it to boost brain power and improve their focus and clarity while meditating. 

A number of human studies have shown lion mane’s ability to improve cognition, focus, and memory [11]. There are also some animal studies that show how lion’s mane can reduce plaque in the brain that can lead to decreased focus and clarity as you age [12]. 

We do need more evidence before making definitive conclusions. However, current evidence suggests that potential for these mushrooms to improve overall brain health [13].

We love lion’s mane for these very reasons. It’s a great way to keep your mind focused and calm without having to solely depend on various cups of coffee or other artificial stimulants that leave you feeling jittery.

Mood and Brain Health 

Another common effect that lion’s mane mushroom tea drinkers report is feelings of calm and decreased feelings of stress and anxiety.

This is backed up with a few different scientific studies. One saw that participants ingesting lion’s mane had a reduction in feelings of anxiety and depression after just 4 weeks [14].

This could be because of the various compounds found in lion’s mane, and it’s also believed to be linked to the anti-inflammatory properties we discussed earlier. 

High levels of inflammation have been linked to both anxiety and depression [15]. The anti-inflammatory properties of lion’s mane mushroom could potentially reduce that inflammation. This, in turn, could have a positive impact on mental health and help with some mood disorders [16].

Intrigued? Try Lion’s Mane in Your Mushroom Tea

Lion’s mane mushroom benefits don’t stop there, either! People report feeling happier, calmer, and healthier when consuming these mushrooms. 

Tamim Teas believes in the power of mushrooms, so much so that our teas have no artificial ingredients, caffeine, preservatives, or man-made chemicals. We’re dedicated to using mushrooms for health as naturally as possible. 

We have two lion’s mane mushroom tea varieties for you to try: Lion’s Spice and Lion-Maitake Clarity. Both contain the delicious flavors of herbs and spices to complement the functional mushrooms and create these very special organic and natural blends.