Lion’s Mane Contraindications: Who Should Not Take Lion's Mane?

Lion’s Mane is the talk of the town - and it’s not surprising! This wonder-shroom can do some incredible things. From improving your mood and balancing your hormones to protecting your brain and fighting the symptoms of anxiety and depression. You want to feel better and unlock your full potential, but is Lion’s Mane right for you? 

In this blog, we put on our investigator caps and did some digging, looking into the latest studies on Lion’s Mane mushroom and its possible interactions. Things like prescription drugs, existing conditions and other dietary supplements can interact with Lion’s Mane, so it’s important to be in the know.

Lion’s Mane is very safe to take for most people. If you want to know more about the safety of Lion’s Mane read our previous blog here

But there are some people who might need to take it with caution. Keep reading to find out more… 

Blood-Clotting

If you’re a bleeder, watch out for Lion’s Mane! This smart shroom is great at a lot of things, one of which is putting a pause on blood clotting. By itself, this usually isn’t a problem for most people as the effects are minimal. 

But if you have a blood clotting disorder, you could be increasing your risks of bleeding.

Stay on the safe side if you’re getting ready for surgery too, as you don’t want anything interfering with your body’s clotting mojo in that situation. The latest research is showing us that Lion’s Mane is very good at preventing something called collagen-induced platelet aggregation. Catchy, we know! Basically, this is a reaction responsible for blood clotting. 

So, since Lion’s Mane can slow down your body’s ability to make blood clots, it can impact the way you can heal. This means you’re better off hedging your blood-clotting bets and letting your doc know if you’re considering a new supplement.

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Diabetes

If you have diabetes, consider talking to your GP before picking up the Lion’s Mane. As well as lowering your blood clotting ability this blood sugar champion also reduces your blood glucose levels. 

Normally, this can be a bonus to keep your blood sugars levelled out. But it can be tricky if you have diabetes. While there haven’t been any studies done yet on humans with diabetes, Lion’s Mane has been shown to have antihyperglycemic effects in animal studies. 

So, if you’re on any of these medications for diabetes, it’s worth consulting a medical professional first:

  • insulin
  • metformin
  • glimepiride
  • Invokana

Blood Pressure

Lately, we’ve been seeing some fantastic evidence that Lion’s Mane has the power to lower your blood pressure. This is good news if you think you have issues with high blood pressure. But there’s a big but coming up…

If you’re already on blood pressure medication you should proceed with your mushroom supplements with caution. You don’t want to go too far the other way and reduce your blood pressure by too much!

Be careful if you’re on any of the blood pressure medications like:

  • ACE inhibitors 
  • Angiotensin II receptor blockers 
  • Beta-blockers 
  • Calcium channel blockers 
  • Diuretics 
  • Renin-inhibitors 

Or if you’re dealing with heart disease! Lion’s Mane is good at preventing heart disease by preventing oxidation of cholesterol in arteries, but if you’re on blood-clotting or antidiabetic medicines then you’re better off letting your doctor know you intend to take Lion’s Mane beforehand.

Blood Thinners

That’s right, we’re talking blood again. Are you on antiplatelet medications? Well, you may need to check in with your doctor before trying out Lion’s Mane. Antiplatelet drugs are used to have a similar effect to blood thinners, and they’re usually prescribed to slow down the ability to make blood clots. 

Generally speaking if you’re on blood thinners, you’ll need to consult with your doctors before starting any new supplements, just to be safe.

The most likely people to need these medications are people at risk of stroke or heart disease. Some of the medications that Lion’s Mane might interact with are:

  • acetylsalicylic acid (Aspirin, Novasen, Entrophen, etc.)
  • clopidogrel
  • ticagrelor
  • prasugrel

Immunosuppressants

Immune disorder warriors, we see you out there. As you might have guessed from our previous blogs, Lion’s Mane is a powerful immune booster. It contains bioactive compounds that give your immune system a kick.

But there’s one drawback. If you’re taking immunosuppressants, you might want to put a pause on the mushrooms until you have some professional advice.

Lion’s Mane could interact with your medications, stopping them from doing their job. This is especially important to note if you've had an organ transplant or immune system dysfunction. 

So keep the balance just right and talk to your doc if you’re on any of the following meds:

  • Cyclosporine
  • Tacrolimus 
  • Mycophenolate mofetil 
  • Azathioprine 
  • Prednisone 
  • Belatacept 
  • Sirolimus 
  • Everolimus 

Mushroom Allergies

Believe it or not, some unlucky folks suffer from mushroom allergies. That means they’re sensitive or allergic to many or all types of shrooms including Lion’s Mane. If you know you’re allergic to fungi, yeast or mould, you might want to take good ol’ Hericium Erinaceus with caution.

Symptoms to look out for include:

  • skin rashes or hives
  • runny nose and watery eyes
  • swelling of the mouth, lips, or throat
  • nausea, vomiting, and persistent diarrhoea
  • worsening of asthma symptoms

If you do experience these symptoms, stop taking Lion’s Mane immediately and consult with a medical professional to be safe.

Pregnancy

Pregnancy poses a bit of a conundrum when it comes to testing and research. As a general rule, most studies won’t test supplements - even usually safe ones - on pregnant people. This is because they just don’t want to take any risks, even little ones, that could harm, well, little ones. 

That means generally speaking - if you’re pregnant or breastfeeding it’s best to check with your doctor before taking Lion’s Mane. There simply isn’t enough information out there to make a safe and informed decision on your own. With that in mind, it’s always a good idea to check in with your doc before taking any supplements if you’re pregnant.

It’s best to err on the side of caution at least until you’re not sharing your body with anyone else!

Should You Take Lion’s Mane?

Studies are showing us every day that Lion’s Mane is a safe and extremely helpful little shroom supplement. It can boost your immune responses, lower blood sugars and protect your brain. But if you’re on any prescription medications, if you’re pregnant or if you have an existing condition, it’s best to ask your doc first.

If that doesn’t sound like you and you want to find out the many powers of Lion’s Mane, check out our high-quality Lion’s Mane capsules.

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