Lion’s Mane mushroom is becoming increasingly popular due to its many health benefits. In fact, it has been used in Traditional Chinese Medicine for centuries. It can be grown, foraged, or purchased raw, powdered, or in the form of supplements.
Here, we are going to make our own Homemade Lion’s Mane Tincture for Brain Fog using an organic powder. We’ll also discuss the many benefits of Lion’s Mane along with a brief overview of growing and foraging this incredible medicinal mushroom.
About Lion’s Mane
Lion’s Mane mushroom is naturally found in hardwood forests growing on old, dead wood or even up in trees. It is native to many parts of Asia, Europe, and North America. It is known by many names including Hedgehog Mushroom, Yamabushitake, or Houtou. Botanically, it is Hericium erinaceus. It is gorgeously cream white and forms a mass of tiny icicle-looking dangling spines.
Brain-Boosting Benefits of Lion’s Mane
Lion’s mane contains compounds that may help stimulate brain cell growth. These are known as hericenones and erinacines. Studies have shown significant neuron development using extracts of H. erinaceus.
Research on Lion’s Mane shows many potential health benefits as well. These include potentially protecting against signs of dementia, reducing anxiety, depression and helping to repair nerve damage.
Other Health Benefits of Lion’s Mane
Beyond brain health, Lion’s Mane has strong anti-inflammatory and antioxidant capabilities. It shows benefits for heart and digestive health along with anti-cancer and anti-diabetes potential as well.
How to Grow Lion’s Mane
I’m not a mushroom grower myself, but through research and talking with some local mushroom growers and foragers, Lion’s Mane is a rewarding and beautiful mushroom to grow. For folks getting into mushroom growing, (I may be joining in soon!) beginning with a starter kit for Lion’s Mane is a great road to success.
Where to Find Lion’s Mane
Wanting to start on your mushroom foraging skills? Lion’s Mane is a wonderful safe way to begin. Apparently, there are no poisonous look-alikes. This is important as there are many poisonous mushrooms out there! Lion’s Mane season is in the fall in North America. It notably grows on dead and decaying hardwood logs.
Lion’s Mane is also often available at health food stores. In its season, it may be available fresh from wild sources. Fresh cultivated Lion’s Mane may be available from a gourmet mushroom grower near you. It can also be purchased in powdered form. For tincture making, dried mushrooms are reportedly best, so this is my choice for making this medicinal tincture.
Homemade Lion’s Mane Tincture for Brain Fog
- Lion’s Mane Mushroom Powder
- Clear Grain Alcohol
- Vegetable Glycerin
- High-Quality Water
Process: Double Extraction Method for Mushrooms
Lion’s Mane and many other medicinal mushrooms contain beneficial compounds that are both water-soluble polysaccharides and alcohol-soluble terpenoids. For this reason, our tincture is being made from a double extraction method.
Step 1: Place 1 tablespoon of Lion’s Mane Mushroom Powder in a 1-cup glass jar.
Step 2: Cover with high-proof clear grain alcohol. I am using some local white lightning for this process.
Step 3: Add 1 teaspoon food-grade vegetable glycerin. This will help emulsify and stabilize the extraction process.
Step 4: Use a plastic lid or place parchment or wax paper under the metal lid.
Step 5: Shake well.
Step 6: Place in a cool, dark area away from sunlight for 2 to 6 weeks. Shake tincture often, every day or so, to maximize contact between alcohol and mushroom content.
Step 7: At the appropriate time, strain the tincture and put the tincture in a brown tincture bottle.
Lion’s Mane Mushroom Water Decoction
You may choose to use the leftover mushroom powder from the tincture-making process or discard it.
Step 1: Place another fresh tablespoon of Lion’s Mane Mushroom Powder in a 1-cup glass jar.
Step 2: This time, cover with one cup of water. I used preboiled water.
Step 3: Stir well and place in a makeshift double broiler. The idea is to simmer the water and mushroom powder for 4 to 8 hours. Longer if desired. Up to 24 hours seems to be the norm in most mushroom decoctions that I have found. A crockpot is ideal.
Step 4: After allowing the liquid to cool, run the liquid through a sieve.
Step 5: Transfer the liquid into the tincture bottle and mix well.
Step 6: Keep the tincture in a cool, dark place, especially if it is in a clear bottle. You want to protect the tincture from light for the longevity of the mixture. This will be kept in the fridge and used daily until it’s time to make a new batch. It would last 6 months to a year if it lasted that long!
How to Use
There are many ways to use this tincture. As a new herbal supplement, it is recommended to try it on its own to start. Most of the research I saw showed benefits after daily use of 21 days or more. We will be using it added to morning coffee and smoothies. It has a rich deep earthy flavor.
To start, a few drops or up to ¼ teaspoon daily for the first week is recommended. It seems the literature promotes consistent daily use versus increasing the quantity of intake.
Warnings and Cautions
Lion’s Mane Mushroom and its constituents and extracts are suggested to be very safe.
The double extraction method seems to be an excellent way to extract all the incredible attributes from Lion’s Mane and other mushrooms. Using the powder was slightly challenging in that it was so fine making it challenging to sieve out of the tincture and decoction. Using dried mushroom pieces that can be chopped up but not quite so finely may be a wonderful option.
I’ll certainly be looking for Lion’s Mane mushrooms in the wild this fall. It does also seem that beginning to grow Lion’s Mane mushroom is a wonderful way to start a mushroom growing hobby.
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