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Lions mane mushroom for brain (Image via Vecteezy/Daniel Scofano)

This little-known mushroom could help cure your brain fog and make you smarter

Have you ever suffered from brain fog? That cloudy, sluggish feeling that takes over your mind and makes even the simplest — and sometimes boring — tasks feel like a struggle. A Japanese fungus called Lion's Mane is believed to combat this very phenomenon in the brain.

The special mushroom called Lion's Mane is causing a stir. Researchers from the University of Queensland, along with experts from Gachon University and Chungbuk National University in Korea, found some new compounds in this mushroom. These compounds might be able to fight brain fog and give your cognitive skills a boost.

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Lion’s mane mushroom compounds fight brain fog

Reduces brain fog (Image via Unsplash/ Kier In sight)
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Brain fog is like when your mind feels cloudy, slow, and it's hard to focus. Lots of people deal with this, especially as they get older. This brain fog can make it tough to get through the day and mess with your overall health. However, the potential solution may lie within nature itself.

Lion's Mane (Hericium erinaceus) mushroom, renowned for its ability to enhance peripheral nerve regeneration through nerve growth factor (NGF) neurotrophic activity, has earned the nickname "the smart mushroom."

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Boosts neurons (Image via Unsplash/ Josh Riemer)

Previous research has found that Lion's Mane has some great compounds that can amp up your neurotrophins. These little cells are important for keeping your brain cells alive, helping them grow, and branching out like a champ. We are talking about nerve growth factor (NGF), brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), neurotrophin 3 (NT3), and neurotrophin 4/5 (NT4/5).


Preclinical studies show positive results for cognitive performance

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Improves cognitive performance (Image via Unsplash/ Buddhi Kumar)

The recent study focused on isolating and identifying new active compounds from Lion's Mane that promote neurite outgrowth in hippocampal neurons. The researchers discovered two compounds - N-de phenylethyl isohericerin (NDPIH) and hericene A - that stimulate the projections of neurons, allowing them to extend and connect with other neurons.

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Using a combination of pre-clinical mouse studies and super-resolution microscopy, the researchers found that Lion's Mane extracts and its active components significantly increased the size of growth cones in brain cells. These growth cones are crucial for cells to sense their environment and establish new connections with other neurons.

Additionally, the study revealed that the NDPIH compound activates a pan-neurotrophic signaling pathway, enhancing downstream signaling in the brain for improved cognitive performance.

Can be used as a safe and alternative option for brain fog (Image via Unsplash/ Ann Danilina)
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Dennis E. Desjardin, PhD, Chief Mycologist at Sempera Organics and professor emeritus at San Francisco State University, commented on the promising nature of this in vitro and in vivo preclinical research. He mentioned that the newly identified compounds in Lion's Mane show the potential to improve cognitive performance through BDNF-like neurotrophic activity and nerve growth factor (NGF) synthesis and secretion.

The findings of this study have attracted the attention of Arev Life Sciences Global Corporation, a Canada-based company. They have announced plans to launch their research to identify advanced isolation technology for their proprietary Lion's Mane extract.

Dr. Sateesh Apte, a scientific advisory board member at Arev, expressed excitement about the discovery and its potential to promote neuroplasticity and combat degenerative brain conditions.


Conclusion

The researchers will continue to examine this newly found pathway and study its effects on human beings. Their next approach is to see if the reported bioactive compounds have the potential to survive the human gut and cross the blood-brain barrier.

As further research unfolds, the hope is that Lion's Mane will become a natural and safe option for individuals seeking to optimize their brain health and combat the challenges posed by brain fog.

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Edited by
Ankush Das
 
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