Hericium erinaceus - the fight against cancerHave you ever seen mushrooms that look like a lion's head? Does it surprise you? Quite in vain, it is this type of mushroom that is successfully used to improve the functioning of the brain, in the treatment of cancer, and for many other medicinal purposes.Hericium erinaceus is a nootropic product. It is this quality that has led to the use of the mushroom in traditional medicine in China. The results of scientific research conducted several years ago aimed at studying its effect on the functioning of the brain, amazed the whole world.
According to one study published by the Journal of Agriculture and Food Chemistry, Lion's mane has the following properties:
● neuro and cardioprotective;
Also noted is its ability to increase the cognitive function of the brain.
The results are impressive
Whether you want to learn about the properties of blackberry just for yourself, or seriously plan to include the mushroom in your diet, information about it will definitely surprise you.What is a Hericium erinaceus?Hericium erinaceus
(the Latin name for the blackberry comb) grows in North America, Europe and Asia. However, extraordinary success accompanies him only in the latter region. The unusual appearance contributed to the fact that the mushroom received many additional names - yamabushitake - as the mushroom is called in Japan, "lion's mane" - the English name or grandfather's beard - the name of the mushroom in Europe.
Distinctive features of the combed urchin are its long hanging needles, reaching a centimeter length. In contrast to the predominant number of mushrooms, in which the needles grow upright in different directions, the needles of the hedgehog, hanging down, resemble a lion's mane or grandfather's beard. Mushrooms can be found in late summer and autumn on dead or living trunks of broad-leaved trees.
As a result of studies that were carried out on individual cells, on animals and on humans, a wide spectrum of fungal action was confirmed - anti-inflammatory and antioxidant, immunomodulatory. The practice of traditional Chinese medicine involves the use of blackberry for medicinal purposes for many millennia.Improving the functioning of the brain
The active effect of the fungus on the processes occurring at the cellular level of the brain is the most powerful and well-studied effect of the urchin. The mushroom has a positive effect in the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases.
In an article published by the International Journal of Medicinal Mushrooms, the action of lion's mane is regarded as a stimulant for the growth of brain neurons. Recalling the biology course from high school, we note that the growth of neurites directly depends on the growth of dendrites and axons in neurons.
This discovery is extremely important for human society. By accelerating and enhancing the growth of brain neurites, medicine will be able to prevent degenerative processes in the brain, thus preventing the development of Parkinson's and Alzheimer's diseases.
In 2012, a very important study was carried out in Malaysia, as a result of which the ability of Hericium erinaceus was confirmed to regenerate cells that were damaged during traumatic injuries of peripheral nerves. Injuries of this kind affect the delicate tissues between the spinal cord and the brain.
In their experiments on the treatment of the brain with various drugs, scientists often use a cell line such as PC12. It has already been proven that preparations based on hedgehog protect these cells from damage and thereby significantly prolong their life span. This discovery will help doctors develop new ways to prevent and treat brain diseases.
The journal Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine published the results of animal studies. They proved that eating urchin improves memory in rats and stimulates their cognitive functions, acting equally effectively in healthy animals and animals with Alzheimer's disease. The researchers also noted another, inverse, relationship between Alzheimer's disease and hedgehog - taking the fungus can significantly reduce the symptoms of the disease in animals.
In turn, in the journal Phytotherapy Research, he published research on the study of ways to combat moderate cognitive impairment in humans. Volunteers for 8, 16 weeks ate supplements with combed urchin and their condition improved significantly after this time. Unfortunately, after discontinuation of the drug, the effect disappeared.
Physicians associate ischemic disease with circulatory failure. As a result, brain neurons are damaged. In the laboratory of Taiwan, laboratory studies of the lion's mane were carried out, as a result of which the mushroom demonstrated the ability to prevent damage of this nature.
The Journal of Translational published the initial stages of a study on the protective effect of urchin in the spread of neurodegenerative disorders in Parkinson's disease. According to the results of experiments on animals, it became obvious that the fungus performs a protective function. Despite the fact that the effect of the fungus on the human body has not yet been sufficiently studied, the positive effect of the blackberry on brain cells is obvious.Cancer Protection
According to scientists, the effectiveness of combed urchin in the treatment of cancer and slowing down their development is also obvious. Food supplements containing this mushroom slow down the development of leukemia and oncological lesions of organs such as:
● mammary gland.
South Korean scientists substantiated their assumptions that urchin preparations can significantly reduce the number of leukemia cells in the bloodstream. At the Department of Molecular Biotechnology at South Korea's Aju University, scientists have found that the components contained in the urchin and the nutritional supplements in which they are included show a significant effect in the treatment of leukemia.
"International Journal of Biological Macromolecules" published on its pages a scientific work that described the positive effect of Hericium erinaceus on stomach cancer. This mushroom:
● stops the cell cycle;
● causes death of cancer cells.
Thus, in vitro studies have confirmed the fact that HEG-5 is quite worthy of fighting gastric cancer.
The Kaohsiung Journal of Medical Sciences and the Journal of Natural Product have published research results confirming that lion's mane has been shown to be excellent in the treatment of lung cancer. Almost at the same time, the Journal of Biotechnology and Biotechnology and the Journal of Ethno pharmacology published the results of a study confirming the effectiveness of the mushroom in the treatment of breast, colon and other cancers.
The effectiveness of lion's mane in the treatment of oncological diseases of various organs is evidenced by the results of many studies. But, unfortunately, to date, these studies are still not enough.
It is noted that often oncological metastases from the colon to the lungs. The stage of spread of metastases beyond the localization of cancer is called IV-th. In South Korea, studies have been conducted on rats. After the animals were given the extract of urchin, they showed a significant slowdown in the spread of metastases in the lungs. The result is amazing - from 66 to 69%. It is noteworthy that both alcoholic and aqueous extracts of blackberry work equally well.Hedgehog in support of the circulatory and cardiovascular system.
Hedgehog in support of the circulatory and cardiovascular systemThe effect of comb urchin on the gastrointestinal tract.
Due to its anti-inflammatory action, lion's mane shows positive results in the treatment and restoration of the gastrointestinal tract. According to the results of numerous studies, it is obvious that the use of mushroom extract prevents the development of stomach ulcers.
Animal studies have been conducted at the University of Malaysia (Mushroom Research Center). Their results confirmed the gastroprotective effect of the bioactive components of Lion's mane on rats. This was confirmed by studies by Chinese scientists, which can be found in the International Journal of Medicinal Mushrooms. Thus, it is obvious that the comb urchin significantly reduces the risk of developing gastritis, inflammation of the gastrointestinal tract, and in people with these diseases, the fungus significantly reduces the symptoms of their manifestation.Removal of inflammatory processes
In folk medicine, there are a huge number of methods for the prevention and treatment of inflammatory processes. Official medicine is actively engaged in research to identify new methods of treatment, among them the study of mushrooms.
In 2015, studies were carried out in Japan, during which it was found that the mushroom Lion's mane is effective in relieving inflammation in fatty tissues. This is an extremely important discovery. It is inflammation of adipose tissue that serves as a catalyst for the onset of metabolic syndrome, which in turn increases the risk of diabetes, stroke and heart disease.
Scientists call H. Pylori the most pathogenic bacterium. She is dangerous and treacherous at the same time. In the body of some people, it does not cause any changes at all. At the same time, penetrating into the body of others, it causes serious pathologies, including peptic ulcers of the intestines and stomach.
Hedgehog as a powerful antioxidant
The fight against free radicals found in it, recognized as harmful, can protect the human body from various diseases and benefit it. Lion's mane contains antioxidant molecules that help combat oxidative stress caused by harmful environmental factors. The benefits of antioxidants in wound healing are also clear. This has already been proven by studies on rats conducted in Malaysia. The use of a liquid extract contributed to the rapid healing of the body after injuries of a different nature.In addition, antioxidants can:
● slow down the aging of skin cells;
● protect the liver from damage caused by alcohol abuse;
● protect against the development of osteoporosis.
Improving immunity, well-being and mental health
The improvement in well-being that occurs after taking the extract of combed urchin is characterized by sound sleep and a decrease in the symptoms of mental disorders. Experiments conducted on mice have proven the ability of the polysaccharides contained in hedgehogs to cope with a state of apathy. At the Department of Agroecological Sciences of the University of Kyushu, Faculty of Agriculture, the ability of urchin extract to stabilize and normalize circadian rhythms was proved. This is an extremely important discovery for a category of people who are at high risk of developing dementia.
To study the effect of lion's mane on depression and anxiety, a separate study was conducted in which 30 female volunteers took part. After they took the mushroom extract for a month, they were noted to get rid of both anxiety and depressive states. That is, it is hypothesized that lion's man is able to stimulate the growth and development of NGF nerves.
Studies conducted on laboratory mice have shown that the polysaccharides in the fungus improve the functioning of the human immune system. This in turn helps the body fight infections.
The benefits of hedgehog in diabetes
Animal studies were conducted in 2103, confirming that the intake of Lion's Mane extract by animals normalizes blood glucose levels, and the antioxidants contained in it relieve pain caused by diabetic neuropathy.
Nutritional qualities of lion's mane.
The mass use of combed urchin is very limited. As a result, it is still difficult to realistically assess the real scale and range of its action. But it is already known that 84 grams of the mushroom - one serving, contains:
● 2 grams of protein● 3 grams of carbohydrates;● 20 calories.
Also, according to scientists, the blackberry contains 32 biologically active components at once. However, science does not know the exact content of vitamins and minerals in the mushroom. It is believed that it contains iron, selenium, zinc and potassium. This uncertainty is explained primarily by the fact that most of the studies of the hedgehog were carried out in order to study its polysaccharides - complex carbohydrates, glucose.
For example, combed urchin contains the most complex polysaccharide beta-glucan. Scientists attribute to him such qualities as stimulating the immune response and protecting the cardiovascular system.Application in traditional medicine
In most Asian countries, Lion's mane has been used for many centuries not only as a nutritious product, but also as a medicine. In the last decade, the therapeutic properties of the fungus and its success in ridding people of neurodegenerative diseases have contributed to the growth of its popularity among representatives of official medicine, who have begun numerous studies of the fungus.
At the same time, the inhabitants of the eastern countries still call the crested blackberry a spiritual plant. It is believed that these mushrooms are able to give a person spiritual power and longevity. In the Journal of Restorative Mtdicine published the traditional Chinese and Japanese medicine practice of using the mushroom as:
● against the oncological component;
● stabilizer of the gastrointestinal tract;
● means to strengthen the spleen.
Traditional oriental medicine recognizes that combed hedgehog is useful for five human organs at once, we are talking about:
In addition, the mushroom extract normalizes digestion, gives the body vitality and a surge of vitality. In addition, with the help of a lion's mane in China, the symptoms of a lack of vitality (Qi deficiency) are removed. It is also used to combat insomnia and weakness, helps to restore the nervous system disturbed by diseases.The Relationship between Reishi and Lion's Mane
These two mushrooms have a lot of common characteristics. They are both used to combat oxidative stress and boost the immune system. They are actively used in traditional medicine in China and Japan.
At the same time, the lion's mane mushroom is known for its apparent neuroprotective properties. It stimulates the development of neurites, which will play an important role in the removal of inflammatory processes and the formation of neurons and their networks. Also, this hedgehog strengthens cognitive health.
In medicine in China and Japan, hedgehog is successfully used to combat diseases of the central nervous system. It is believed that it relieves Qi syndrome and restores vitality. The use of urchin is recommended for patients with symptoms of Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases. It is recommended to be used to get rid of insomnia, depression, and cognitive impairment.
Like the blackberry, reishi mushroom has obvious healing properties. Its properties are defined to act as:
In China, Reishi is used to deal with stressors and to clear the mind. This mushroom is considered to be an adaptogen. Reishi also contains polysaccharides, which provide the fungus with anti-cancer properties.How to use and where to buy
A little earlier, it was quite difficult for residents of European countries to find a combed hedgehog for sale. Sometimes, and even then quite rarely, he met in oriental cuisine stores. Today, Europeans have two options for how to get these medicinal mushrooms:
- Buy seeds online and grow mushrooms yourself. By the way, if you are going to cook dishes from them for the whole family later, note that they taste quite strongly reminiscent of seafood and go well with fresh vegetables, brown rice or quinoa. The taste sounds good in combination with bell pepper and onion.
- Buy a ready-made nutritional supplement, the main thing is to make sure in advance of the quality of the product.
If you are lucky enough to get adult fresh combed urchins, follow the recipe for cooking mushrooms, otherwise you risk ruining their taste. The steps for preparing a hedgehog are as follows:
- Clean the hedgehog from dirt.
- Cut off the part of the mushroom that was in contact with the tree during its growth.
- Cut the mushroom into small pieces.
- Fry the mushrooms in a pan until a crust forms, which crunches.
- Check that all the liquid is boiled out of the mushrooms - water.
During the preparation of hedgehogs, watch when they begin to darken. At this time, add oil to them. You can use vegetable, olive or melted butter. Salt and pepper to taste. You can also add onion, garlic or vegetables to taste. If you are cooking shrimp, then add the same ingredients to the mushrooms that you added to the shrimp. The taste of both of these products is almost the same. You can cook vegetarian ceviche from blackberry, the mushroom will give it an unusual, but at the same time pleasant fishy flavor. Fry the mushrooms further until they change color to brownish-golden.Recommended dosages
Dietary supplements containing urchin extract are used to support the body's cognitive functions and strengthen overall immunity. Hedgehog supplements are sold in capsule, powder, or extract form. You can buy them in many pharmacies or order online.
Blackberries can be the sole ingredient in a brain-boosting extract, or they can be added to cordyceps, ginkgo biloba, ashwagandha, and reishi.
Before you start using blackberry, be sure to read the dosage indicated on the package, and under no circumstances exceed it. In most cases, manufacturers recommend 300 to 3000 mg, which should be taken 1-3 times daily. If you want to eliminate the risk of a negative reaction of the body to the components of the supplement, start using the smallest dose, then gradually increase it. Extremely rarely, allergic reactions can occur - rash or itching, digestive disorders. If this happens, immediately stop using the supplement.Historical background
In Asian countries, Lion's mane, along with other components of plant origin, is actively used to improve overall health and immunity. It is used to treat many diseases. For Buddhist monks, this mushroom is considered a source of mystical power. Traditional medicine has been using the mushroom for treatment for several hundred years.
The Japanese name for hedgehog is yamabushitake. It is believed that it is directly related to the vestments of hermits belonging to Buddhist monks. Their clothes were called suzukake, and they were sewn from long strips of fur. That is, outwardly, the clothes really resemble a hedgehog. According to information received from some historical sources, earlier hedgehogs had the opportunity to eat exclusively representatives of royal families.Risks of Side Effects
This mushroom is considered completely safe for the human body. Studies have proven it to be non-toxic even when consumed in unlimited quantities over several years.
However, although there have been extremely rare reports of side effects caused by the use of urchin, we are talking about respiratory distress syndrome and contact dermatitis. Even less often, the use of urchin can cause swelling of the lips, itching and burning, and difficulty breathing. These symptoms require immediate medical attention.
Summing up, we note the most important and obvious facts about the combed urchin:
✔ This mushroom is edible.
✔ Grows in North America, Europe and Asia.
✔ It has been used for thousands of years as a remedy in Chinese folk practices and traditional Chinese medicine.
✔ Useful qualities of the fungus are provided by the presence of polysaccharides and a number of other useful components in its composition.
✔ The most unique action of the fungus is the ability to resist cancer and neurodegenerative disorders.
✔ With the help of hedgehog, they treat the cardiovascular system, relieve inflammation in the digestive system, relieve oxidative stress, stop the development of diabetes, normalize the psychological state and strengthen the immune system.
To the great regret of many users, this mushroom cannot be purchased at the nearest supermarket. But, it’s not worth it to get upset. Lion’s mane can be purchased online or grown at home from seeds purchased via the Internet. Also on sale there are already completely ready-to-use nutritional supplements with comb urchin extract.