Lion’s Mane Mushroom, What Makes it Such a Great Nootropic Ingredient?

Article by: David Gracey
lion's mane mushroom nootropic

With an almost infinite number of nootropics on the market, it’s hard to know which one to take and for what purpose.  It can be very overwhelming to do all of the extensive the research required all by yourself. (to say the least!)

Still, certain nootropic ingredients always seem to be popping up time and time again when looking for a specific benefit.

(Also known as Hericium erinaceus, monkey head mushroom, bearded tooth mushroom, satyr’s beard, bearded hedgehog mushroom, pom pom mushroom, or bearded tooth fungus – source: wikipedia

Lion’s mane mushroom is one of those nootropics!   It’s one of those brain boosting substances that have a lot of people talking (even raving) about it.

Everyone wants to know what is lion’s mane mushroom and what makes it a great nootropic.

Depending on what you’re looking for, it can be an absolute godsend of a solution for anyone looking for an added performance boost as far as cognitive function is concerned.

Lion’s mane mushroom is a naturally occuring nootropic substance that aims to increase mental cognition (memory, learning, and focus) while reducing depression and anxiety symptoms via the increasing of BDNF and NGF levels in the brain. 

These two proteins act like fertilizers in the brain; promoting growth, maintenance, and increasing the lifespan of brain cells.  This makes Lion’s Mane a very popular nootropic ingredient!

Lion’s mane mushroom has its origins in Asia.

They’ve been widely used for culinary purposes for thousands of years where they’re considered safe to consume, as well as offer incredible health benefits.

Still, learning how to take them as a nootropic,  and for how long can be challenging, especially when it comes to getting the most out of them benefits wise.

If you don’t take them correctly, you won’t experience all of the benefits. 

That’s exactly what you’ll find out here in this article. 

If you stay until the end, you’ll soon understand all of the real benefits it can provide, how to take it properly, all of the possible side effects associated with them, and how the nootropic experts make use of Lion’s mane to maximize its efficacy.

The Secret of Lion’s Mane Mushroom: Increasing Levels Of BDNF And NGF Is Key!

First, I’ll start with the science stuff, so you can decide for yourself whether or not you want to consider taking this amazing supplement.

The key to figuring out why lion’s mane works are the increasing levels of BDNF and NGF.

These are proteins that have incredible effects on the brain.  As explained above, they work as fertilizers on the brain. They stimulate growth, improve maintenance, and increase the lifespan of brain cells, (especially neurons).

In simple terms, what NGF (nerve growth factor) does in your brain is enhance overall cognition.  This produces benefits for both people with cognitive impairments as well as healthy adults.

This is what people anecdotally experience as mental clarity, improved learning, and increased memory.

So, the exciting evidence for lion’s mane mushroom’s benefits is the NGF levels that increase after usage of this nootropic.  The only thing to keep in mind is that lion’s mane mushroom, unlike other nootropics, takes a while to produce any noticeable effects, and is considered a long-term nootropic ingredient. 

This means that you may need to take it for several weeks to notice the real benefits. 

Soon I will show you how to properly take lion’s mane as a notropic, but first let’s go over how it performs as a cognitive enhancer

Lion’s Mane Mushroom Improves Brain Cognition!

optimize brain cells

Brain cognition is the function of the brain that is responsible for gaining knowledge and comprehension.  This breaks down into thinking, knowing, problem-solving, and remembering.

These are all high-level skills that require complex brain cells and connections to work at optimal levels.

What lion’s mane does, is improve your current brain cognition levels to the point of noticeable improvements.  One study in impaired, elderly adults discovered the efficacy of lion’s mane mushroom in the brain, which was Improving brain cognition!

This means that lion’s mane helped with a reduction in brain impairments such as memory and learning disabilities.

Again, the secret for the brain cognition improvement lies in the increased NGF levels in the brain after taking lion’s mane during several weeks.

Neuroplasticity, memory, and learning will also improve due to its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.

So, if you want to take advantage of those benefits, you not only need to take them correctly, but you need to acquire your supplements from legitimate companies / trusted sources.

Otherwise, you may not see any benefits, especially since the benefits won’t be noticeable right away, as it is a long-term nootropic substance.

This Organic Powder Here is a great lion’s mane brand to use in any nootropic stack, and is the one I personally recommend.

It produces all the benefits within the expected timeframe if taken correctly.

>>Check it out here to see the current pricing.

Lion’s Mane Mushroom Reduces Depression And Anxiety

One of the main reasons people take lion’s mane, is to help with depression and anxiety symptoms.  Although anecdotal evidence is always great and encouraging, scientific studies are always the best source.

They assure you the benefits of taking the supplement without risking having only a placebo benefit.

Lion's Mane Mushroom

One study done in Japan found the efficacy of lion’s mane on humans to treat menopause, which has depression and anxiety as major symptoms.

The study concluded that lion’s mane can reduce the symptoms significantly after 30 days of daily usage.

Now, the great thing about taking lion’s mane is that you don’t feel pressured with deadlines and possible outcomes, which are trademarks of anxiety.  You also get more mental clarity and your mood improves, which are important factors when it comes to depression.

So, if you struggle with mild anxiety and depression symptoms, you can definitely benefit from taking the lion’s mane mushroom on a daily basis.

The main thing you’ll notice is that you will start to see things clearer in your mind, and you won’t worry about everything as much as before.

It’s like life is simply more enjoyable.

Lion’s Mane Mushroom Gives You More Focus, Mental Clarity, And Motivation

Another reason to experiment with lion’s mane mushroom as a nootropic, is that it gives you more focus, mental clarity, and motivation.  (Think less procrastination)

If you know the feeling of dragging throughout your day and just postponing any difficult task, you’ll enjoy this benefit.

What lion’s mane does to your brain is improve cognition and the sympathetic connections that happen in your brain. This makes the overall functioning of your brain faster and more optimized.

Lion’s mane isn’t a miracle powder or pill, but it can certainly feel like one after prolinged use.

You’ll notice that you can focus better and have more motivation to tackle all those things you’ll normally avoid.

The only possible downside is that you may find yourself too interested in everything (not necesarily a bad thing at all).  This can eat up hours of your day on tasks that you’re supposed to finish within minutes.  As long as you are aware of this possible outcome, you’re good to go.

So, if you want to have more focus and motivation to tackle daily tasks, this is the one nootropic for you. Especially if you have a lot of boring activities to do.

Like I mentioned before…  I use This:  Organic Lion’s Mane Powder in my morning smoothies, and it’s awesome!  Highly recommended.

There are some other good options out there that are likely just as effective, but I just stick with what I know works.  You can check out some other lion’s mane supplements here as well.

Other Health Benefits of Lion’s Mane Mushroom Powder

Nootropics are taken with the goal of enhancing overall brain in mind (No pun intended!).

This means memory, learning, problem-solving, mental clarity, etc…

Still, this doesn’t mean that these nootropic substances can’t have other amazing health benefits that come with them as well.

In the case of lion’s mane, they’re great for gastrointestinal issues.

Although studies on this aren’t completely conclusive, you can trust the people that have been using it for thousands of years. In Chinese medicine, lion’s mane is used to treat stomach problems.  It is known to have protective effects.

Other health benefits include the prevention of heart problems and diabetes.  Not only that, but studies on mice have shown that it can also be useful to obesity treatments.

So, even though you’re interested in lion’s mane for brain cognitive enhancing purposes, you can still benefit from other upsides.

However, these are mostly preventive ones, and not meant to be used as treatment after you have the condition. 

But either way, they can be great allies to your diet.

Pay Attention To Possible Lion’s Mane Side Effects

This is the most exciting thing about lion’s mane mushroom (after its many benefits).

It has no side effects except for itchy skin in some who take it.  This symptom has only been reported in a small number of users, so it doesn’t mean that you’re going to necessarily experience it.

What you mainly need to pay attention to is how your body reacts.  When you start to take any nootropics, you become a sort of a self scientist. 

You need to record, analyze, and make a conclusion about your entire experience. This is how you’re going to know for sure whether a supplement worked for you or not. 

(That’s also why it’s usually best to start out slowly, and not mix several different nootropic supplemements together right off the bat.)

Just make sure that you pay attention to how your body reacts to it daily and weekly.  This doesn’t mean only the side effects, but also the benefits.

Pay close attention to how much sharper you are for instance.  Can you easily remember things like where you placed your car keys?  Take not of small changes you begin to notice in your daily activities.

This is the only true way to be successful at nootropic experimentation.

How To Take Lion’s Mane Mushroom

In general, you take between 500-1000 mg twice per day. (some people use up to 3000 mg per day every day.)

Now, this will vary from brand to brand and individual.  The best that you can do is to start with a lower dosage and follow the instruction given by the manufacturer.

Now, since lion’s mane has an earthy taste, it’s best to add your lion’s mane powder it in a smoothie like I do, or just use a capsule or extract.

Some people take it in their coffee but it changes the taste of the coffee (which you may or may not like).

That’s why it’s better to drink it in a morning smoothie, or a capsule with water.

You’ll take it twice a day 500 mg each time to get started.  Now, more than the dosage, you should beware of how much active compound vs. filler content you’re getting.

This is something that not everyone tells you, but if you don’t pay attention you could possibly be wasting your money.

96% active compound is a good number.

So, Is Lion’s Mane Mushroom a Good Nootropic to Add to Your Stack?

Lion’s mane mushroom is a nootropic that aims at cognitive enhancement in the brain, and a decrease in depression and anxiety levels related to mood.

You’ll think clearer, have a sharper mind, and be in a better mood.  Just make sure to follow the daily usage instructions and  record your experience throughout.

Remember, lion’s mane is considered a long-term nootropic substance, so you may not feel or notice the effects the first week or so.  You’ll start noticing effects after a few weeks of continuous use, and once you do, you may never want to go without it.

So, have you used lion’s mane before in your nootropic stacks? If so, what did you notice while taking it?

Leave a comment below!

About David Gracey

About David Gracey

Founder of

Hey! My name is David Gracey.  I am the brain child of and a Cognitive Brain Function Researcher, Avid Biohacker, Lucid Dreamer, Morning Ritual Master, and Self-Proclaimed Nootropic Junkie of Sorts! 

In other words, I am completely obsessed with anything and everything related to cognitive brain enhancement! 

Whether it's nootropic supplements, challenging brain puzzles, or even meditation techniques, chances are, I've tried it!  This website is my outlet to give back and share what I've learned in the past 15+ years in this field of study. 

You Can Read My Other Posts Here: 



Check out these other posts!

About David:

Hey! I’m so glad you’re here. My name is David Gracey. I am a cognitive brain function researcher, avid biohacker, and self-proclaimed nootropic junkie of sorts! (And, yes, a bit of a nerd as well...) I created this website as an outlet to share my passion for self improvement and cognitive brain enhancement. Got questions? Shoot me a message!










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