Is Lion’s Mane Legal In The UK?

Is Lion’s Mane Legal In The UK?

Lion’s mane is a mushroom that’s rapidly growing in popularity in the wellness world, with people using it to enhance their memory, cognition and mood. 

However, there seems to be some confusion over its legal status.

This is largely because lion's mane is a protected fungi species, so it's illegal to pick or harvest in the wild. 

It is very legal to grow, buy or possess, however. 

Which is why we’re here to dispel the myths and lay out the facts when it comes to whether or not lion’s mane mushroom is legal in the UK. 

What is lion’s mane?

Also known by the latin name Hericium Erinaceus, lion’s mane is a beautiful mushroom that grows throughout the northern hemisphere.

It’s a large, white, shaggy-looking mushroom that resembles a lion's mane as it grows. 

Usually found growing on dead hardwoods, lion’s mane has been used in traditional Chinese medicine for centuries and its production is widespread within Asia. 

Lion’s mane is also common in gourmet cooking, with young specimens offering a great steak-like texture when pan-fried. 

Is Lion’s Mane Legal In The UK?

Yes, lion’s mane mushroom is 100% legal in the UK. 

As it’s a non-psychedelic mushroom commonly used in food and traditional Chinese medicine, lion’s mane has always been legal to grow, possess and consume. 

However, there are restrictions against picking wild lion’s mane in the UK. 

The mushroom is protected under Schedule 8 of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, which is the highest legal protection available to plants and fungi. 

This is to protect it from over harvesting to make sure it continues to grow in the wild in the UK, as it's quite rare here. 

How Lion’s mane works

Lion’s mane is gaining popularity in the health and wellness world for its neurogenerative and neuroprotective effects.

Put simply, there are compounds in lion’s mane that have been shown to increase Nerve Growth Factor in the brain, which promotes the growth of new brain cells.

This may make lion’s mane a potential treatment for neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s, brain injuries like strokes, and cognitive decline due to aging.

It’s also used to enhance gut health, regulate blood sugar levels, and for reducing cancer risk. 

Here is a list of science-backed health benefits of lion’s mane mushroom…

You’d be wise not to expect instant results with lion’s mane supplements. Clinical studies done with lion’s mane are typically done over at least two months of use.

Is Lion’s mane psychedelic?

No, lion’s mane mushroom is not psychedelic. It contains no psilocybin and no psychedelic compounds. It will not make you hallucinate, high, buzzed or giggly. 

The reason some people believe that lion’s mane is psychedelic comes down to the fact that, like psilocybin (the psychedelic compound in ‘magic’ mushrooms), lion’s mane can promote the growth of new brain cells. 

However, lion’s mane does this without producing any perception-altering, psychedelic effects. 

In fact, the most commonly reported effects of lion’s mane are… 

  • Clarity of thought
  • Enhanced memory
  • Decreased anxiety
  • Enhanced cognition
  • Increased energy

Lion’s mane mushrooms contain a range of unique compounds that appear to have positive effects on the brain. 

These include polysaccharides, beta-glucans, and hericenones and erinacines, among others. 

Final thoughts 

Lion's mane mushroom may be illegal to pick in the wild in the UK, but it is very much legal to grow, possess or buy. 

And while it does have the profound ability to promote the growth of new brain cells, it's also non-psychedelic and won't alter your perception in any way. 

In fact, it's this ability that makes lion's mane such a useful tool for people looking to enhance their brain health or protect their brain from disease.

Buy our high quality lion's mane extract here

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