Article at a Glance:
- Stress is the human reaction to physical, emotional, or psychological changes that occur daily.
- Long-term, or chronic stress, can negatively affect the entire body, including the brain, heart, immune system, and digestive system.
- Certain functional mushrooms like Lion’s Mane offer nutrients that may help combat the effects of stress.
Stress is a normal part of life that happens to everyone, whether triggered by work, family, injury, or environment. Luckily, healthy humans are designed to respond to typical daily stress.
When we have more stress than we're equipped to handle, our bodies may need support with stress-relieving activities or functional foods like Lion's Mane mushrooms.
Effects of Stress
Stress is the feedback we feel when threatened by an aggravating or dangerous life event. Whether battling rush-hour traffic or a pack of wolves, our bodies release stress hormones, including adrenaline and cortisol.
These stress hormones push us to fight or flee by initiating a cascade of chemical reactions in our bodies. These reactions increase heart rate, blood pressure, blood sugar, and energy access. They also tell the body to focus less on immediate needs like digestion, immune responses, reproduction, and cell growth.
Studies show that over time, too much exposure to stress hormones can cause disorders in the body related to the constant interruption of normal functioning. This damage can cause physical and mental problems and may even increase the rate at which we age.
Fortunately, there are ways we can combat stress. Deep breathing, exercise, and eating adaptogenic foods are all actions that may have a positive effect on feelings of stress.
Stress-Taming Lion's Mane
Mushrooms have been used to benefit human health for centuries but have only recently been valued in western medicine. Some mushrooms may even have the potential to reduce the impacts of stress.
Lion’s Mane, scientifically known as Hericium erinaceus, has been studied as a functional mushroom with adaptogenic properties. Adaptogens help the body neutralize the harmful effects of stress and maintain balance.
Research shows that adaptogenic foods support a healthy hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA axis), the system responsible for releasing stress hormones.
Scientists think Lion's Mane supports a normal stress response by prompting the release of feel-good neurotransmitters. A 2018 animal study showed a positive effect on neurotransmitters dopamine and serotonin levels in stressed mice that were given Lion's mane extract for four weeks.
Supports Immune System
Lion's Mane may also support normal inflammatory processes as part of the immune system. In the same study mentioned above, Lion's Mane supplementation supported normal inflammatory markers levels compared to the control mice. While these markers can be a typical part of the immune response, too much may cause problems over time.
Think and Feel Better
Several studies have also shown that Lion's Mane may also positively influence the normal growth of brain cells. Promoting new cells in the brain, particularly the hippocampus, supports a normal emotional response during stress.
Stress can lead to mood disorders in some people. In a small human study, after four weeks of eating cookies containing 2 grams of Lion’s Mane, perimenopausal women experienced a positive effect on mood and concentration symptoms.
Lion's Mane Daily Supplement
While some stress is an unavoidable part of life, years of chronic stress can lead to problems throughout the body. Functional, adaptogenic mushrooms like Lion's Mane may help relieve stress and promote overall well-being.
Fungies offers an enjoyable way to try Lion’s Mane mushrooms! Our delicious Lion's Mane Gummies provide 500mg of Lion’s Mane extract. Taken daily, they may help you mitigate the effects of stress in your life.
- (n.d.). NCCIH. Retrieved February 21, 2023, from https://www.nccih.nih.gov/health/stress
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