The brand of lion's mane mushroom I am taking says it is activated, freeze-dried, mycelium, so it does not appear to be an extract. The instructions on the bottle say to take 1 gram per day. What is the maximum safe dose?
Nosher, you've probably already found an answer to this question, or have abandoned the initial idea. Regardless, I will post a few relevant things I know about Lion's Mane, both for yourself, and for others who may find or stumble across this thread in search of information.
1) I doubt that there is a maximum safe dose, at least not within reason, given that Lion's Mane is an edible mushroom and people are known to cook hundreds of grams of the fruiting body and eat it in one sitting in a meal. I have not come across any studies or anecdotal reports which contradict this statement of non-toxicity.
2) Given this, I think it is more important to find out the minimum effective dose, given that it is not a cheap foodstuff. In this study:http://www.ncbi.nlm....pubmed/18844328
participants were given practically 1 gram per day of Yamabushitake (Lion's Mane) dry powder per day. I don't know how much that would translate into in terms of raw fruiting body powder. Assuming about a 90% water content (which is a rule of thumb water content value for mushroom species), that would be around 10 grams per day. This dosage was effective, according to the study (and free of side effects, a was to be expected). However, it is a large amount to take (for cost reasons only, you may be willing to go this far if your budget allows for it).
Most vendors of Lion's Mane suggest anywhere from 1 gram to 4 grams per day of Lion's Mane raw fruiting body, according to the package. This seems reasonable, particularly for somebody with no "real" (i.e. medically relevant) cogintive deficits. The effect is dose-dependent, meaning that you'll likely find greater effect the more you take. 1 gram seems to be a reasonable floor, given the state of publicly available information. Starting there, I would advise titrating upwards and gauge your own reactions.
3) In my own experience, anywhere from 2-5 grams per day, split into 2 doses, seems ideal. I have not experimented with higher doses due to cost. At this dose, I get acute effects, including:
- Improvement in vision (higher contrast between distinct objects, greater colour saturation, and enhanced depth perception).
- Improvement in short-term memory (excellent for information rich jobs or activities).
- Greater equanimity (more stable mood, mild anxiolysis)
- Reduced stomach distress (can reduce the unpleasant effects of acidosis or bad digestion)
All these effects are non-placebo (you may ask and challenge me to produce the grounds for such assertion if you wish), and are consistent with the scientific and anecdotal/historical literature on this mushroom.