Medicinal Mushrooms and Nootropic herbs

Medicinal Mushrooms and Nootropic herbs

Nootropic herbs are plants, or parts of plants such as roots, stems, leaves, flowers and seeds, that are used for their brain-enhancing functions.

Herbs have been researched and for thousands of years in many cultures, and in Chinese culture, this research has been documented as well, so we know a great deal about the brain enhancing qualities of herbs.

However, t’s only in the last hundred years, or less, that modern Western science has researched these herbs and us how they work in our body and brain. Modern research is little by little validating what people already know in other culture, through both practical experience, and documented research.

Emperor Shen-Nung, the 2nd of China’s emperors (3500-2600 BC) catalogued over 365 species of medicinal plants. Many of which are still used in traditional Chinese medicine today, and hundreds more have since been researched and documented, contributing to the extensive library of medicinal herbs.

Examples of nootropic herbs are:

  • Ashwagandha
  • Bacopa Monnieri
  • Ginkgo Biloba
  • Ginseng
  • Gotu Kola
  • Holy Basil
  • Lemon Balm
  • Maca
  • Rhodiola Rosea
  • Saffron
  • Turmeric
  • Valerian

Medicinal mushrooms also have nootropic qualities and exampes are:

  • Chaga (Inonotus obliquus)
  • Cordyceps (Cordyceps militaris)
  • Lion’s Mane (Hericium erinaceu)
  • Maitake (Grifola frondosa)
  • Oyster (Pleurotus ostreatus)
  • Reishi (Ganoderma lucidum)

Studies have shown that these herbs and mushrooms are often as effective or more, and safer than modern pharmaceuticals, with a similar mechanism of action.

Scientific studies also validate the cognitive benefits associated with nootropic herbs.

Photo by Wendy Wei

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