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Diabetes is a disease that occurs when your blood glucose, also called blood sugar, is too high. Blood glucose is your main source of energy and comes from the food you eat. Insulin, a hormone made by the pancreas, helps glucose from food get into your cells to be used for energy.
Several animal studies have shown that Lion’s Mane reduced blood glucose levels in both normal and diabetic mice by nearly half of what was recorded prior to the experiment, even at daily dosages as low as 6 mg per kg of body weight. That is an average daily dose of about 500 mg for humans. Lion’s Mane also increased glucose tolerance in diabetic mice. (1)
One experiment investigated the hypoglycemic and hypolipidemic effects of water extract of Lion's Mane in streptozotocin (STZ)-induced diabetic rats, whose pancreases were damaged by a toxic agent. The extract was was administered for a period of 28 days. The effects on glucose, insulin, and lipid files in blood, and oxidative stress parameters in the liver were evaluated. The results showed significant decrease in serum glucose level and a significant rise in serum insulin levels. The extract also reduced blood lipid abnormalities while increasing antioxidant enzymes in the liver. (2)
Another study shows the ability of lion’s mane lowering blood sugars by blocking the activity of the enzyme alpha-glucosidase, which breaks down carbs in the small intestine. Blocking alpha-glucosidase disrupts carb absorption and helps lower blood sugar levels, in response to the body being unable to digest and absorb carbs efficiently. (3)
High blood sugar can cause diabetic neuropathy, which damages the nerves that send signals from your hands and feet. In a six week treatment on diabetic mice, a daily dose of Lion’s Mane ethanol extract led to increased antioxidant levels, lowered blood pressure, and reduced pain significantly.
Diabetic neuropathy can cause numbness or tingling in your fingers, toes, hands, and feet. Another symptom is a burning, sharp, or aching pain (diabetic nerve pain). The pain may be mild at first, but it can get worse over time and spread up your legs or arms. Nerve damage can affect your ability to sleep, decrease your quality of life, and can also cause depression. (4)
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