Lion’s Mane Vs Reishi | Which is Best?

Lion's Mane Vs Reishi | Which is Best?

If you are aware of anything regarding functional mushrooms, then you are likely blown away by what you are learning. I know I was as I started learning about each mushroom and all of the studies that back up the health claims that seem too good to be true.

Depending on the species, they may be capable of doing everything from protecting against Alzheimers to relieving anxiety, boosting immunity, to supporting and strengthening treatments for cancer. Two of these amazing mushrooms are lion’s mane and reishi.

What are the similarities and differences between these two mushrooms? Which conditions do they treat? And which should you consider taking? We are going to answer those questions and more when we compare lion’s mane to reishi mushrooms.

Lion’s Mane vs Reishi

Lion’s mane and reishi are rarely confused with one another, but they are both common ingredients found in mushroom supplements.

If you are just learning about the benefits of medicinal mushrooms, you might be curious to know more about these particular types, to compare and contrast them with one another. With this in mind, let us look closer at the similarities and differences between lion’s mane and reishi mushrooms.


Both lion’s mane and reishi mushrooms are edible and are used for medicinal purposes or supplemented for their health benefits. Both offer numerous health benefits, while not producing the psychedelic effects some other types of mushrooms are known to produce. Both lion’s mane and reishi mushrooms are found growing in hardwood forests and in forested areas, growing on dead or rotting trees.


Lion’s mane has the scientific name Hericium erinaceus, and reishi has the scientific name Ganoderma lucidum.

Reishi mushrooms are red, orange, or yellow, flat, fan-shaped, whereas lion’s mane mushrooms are more globular, spongy, and white. They are wildly different in appearance, and one would easily assume the distinctive-looking lion’s mane is not a mushroom at all.

Both reishi and lion’s mane mushrooms are considered functional or medicinal mushrooms, but they are used for vastly different purposes. Reishi mushrooms are more for boosting the immune system and use in cancer treatments, whereas lion’s mane mushrooms are used for cognitive enhancement, nerve health, and general cognitive functions.

So Which Is Best, Lion’s Mane or Reishi?

By now, you will no doubt have picked up on the fact that both lion’s mane and reishi mushrooms are great at improving your health and treating various health conditions. So, you might wonder, which is better? The short answer is, it depends.

Reishi is great for boosting your immune system and improving your overall health and vitality. It’s also great for general anxiety relief and helping your body relax and reach it’s state of homeostasis, which is why these mushrooms are called adaptogens, as they help you adapt to the stressors of your environment.

Lion’s mane is considered a nootropic by many, and used for it’s cognitive enhancement benefits. So if you’re looking for improved focus or wanting to take something to promote neurogenesis and protect against alzheimer’s, lion’s mane is your best bet.

So, both reishi and lion’s mane are great mushrooms to add to your supplement stack. I personally take each of them everyday, so you can’t go wrong buying both of them. One kind of mushroom is not necessarily “better” than another, as both are used for treating a variety of conditions. The right fungus to eat for you will depend on what you are trying to cure.

If you are still unsure of what mushroom supplements to try, or you are worried about adding a new supplement to your regimen, it may be best to speak with your health care provider first. Medicinal mushrooms of any type can have negative effects if you are pregnant, breastfeeding, suffer from high blood pressure, or have other major health conditions, so always consult with your physician with those cases.

You can find our favorite capsules, powders, and tincture’s on the following pages of our website and learn more about each individually:

Our Favorite Lion’s Mane Supplements

Our Favorite Lion’s Mane Powders

Our Favorite Lion’s Mane Tinctures

Our Favorite Lion’s Mane Gummies

More Info on Lion’s Mane

Lion’s mane is a very distinctive type of mushroom. It has a lookalike called bears head tooth, strange, right?. Lion’s mane appears as a big, white, fuzzy sphere. It grows in the wild on dead, rotting wood, sometimes on tree trunks, sometimes on the ground, on fallen logs or pieces of decaying bark.

They can also be grown at home, and are a popular choice for people who want to grow their own mushrooms. Lion’s mane mushrooms are both edible and also have some medicinal benefits. They are often harvested for use in extracts and powdered mushroom supplements, and for various recipes. These mushrooms taste like seafood, and many people compare the flavor and texture to that of crab or lobster.

Lion’s mane is known for its effects on cognitive health. It boosts the function of your entire nervous system by promoting neural growth factor (NGF) in your brain. Some of its health benefits include improving memory and focus, relieving anxiety and depression, and even protecting against dementia and Alzheimers.

More on Reishi

Reishi is another kind of “superfood” mushroom that is known for many benefits to your health. It is usually yellowish to orange or red and grows in round fan-like patterns on dead, rotting trees, particularly oaks. Reishi mushrooms are both edible and medicinal, although it is most commonly used for its health benefits rather than eaten for its taste.

They are considered to have a bitter, unpleasant flavor, and have a hard, woody texture. That is, they are one of the most common ingredients found in medicinal mushroom extracts and powders.

Reishi mushrooms have many benefits for health. Their most common medical application is for improving the immune function. Reishi mushrooms seem to have beneficial effects on white blood cells like increasing their activity, increasing natural killer cell effects, and decreasing the pathways that lead to inflammation. These effects can not only enhance your natural immunity against the common cold, flu, and other viruses, but they can also support conventional treatments for people fighting different types of cancer.

To Conclude

Lion’s mane and reishi are both great medicinal mushrooms which improve your health and can cure various conditions. Both these mushrooms can be found growing in the wild, and you can also find them in a variety of different powdered supplements and extracts online and in health food stores.

Additional Resources:

Lion’s Mane Vs Cordyceps

When to harvest lion’s mane mushroom

Updated 10/11/2022


About the author

Bruce Wilson

I've studied Mycology and Forest Pathology and love creating content to help other learn more about my passion. Follow along as I continue to explore the amazing world of functional fungi!

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