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Lion's Mane mushroom is an important and sought-after ingredient, known for its potential SEO boosting properties.

What Does Lion’s Mane Actually Do, Anyway?

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Peripheral neuropathy (and what can be done about it)

Peripheral neuropathy is nerve damage, usually of the extremities. It can be caused by such things as:

  • Diabetes
  • Alcoholism
  • Infection
  • Injury

The manifestations can be different:

  • In the case of diabetes, it’s also called diabetic neuropathy, and almost always affects the feet first.
  • In the case of alcoholism, it is more generalized, but tends towards affecting the extremities first.
  • In the case of infection, a lot depends on the nature of the infection and the body’s response.
  • In the case of injury, it’ll naturally be the injured part, or a little “downstream” of the injured part.
    • This could be the case of a single traumatic injury (e.g. hand got trapped in a slammed door)

This could be the case of a repetitive injury (carpal tunnel syndrome is a kind of peripheral neuropathy, and is usually caused by consistent misalignment of the carpal tunnel, the aperture through which a bundle of nerves make their way from the forearm to the hand)

Prevention is better than cure

If you already have peripheral neuropathy, don’t worry, we’ll get to that. But, if you can, prevention is better than cure. This means:

  • Diabetes: if you can, avoid. This may seem like no-brainer advice, but it’s often something people don’t think about until hitting a pre-diabetic stage. Obviously, if you are Type 1 Diabetic, you don’t have this luxury. But in any case, whatever your current status, take care of your blood sugars as best you can, so that your blood can take care of you (and your nerves) in turn. You might want to check out our previous main feature about this:
  • Alcoholism: obviously avoid, if you can. You might like this previous edition of 10almonds addressing this:
  • Infection: this is so varied that one-liner advice is really just “try to look after your immune health”.
    • We’ll do a main feature on this soon!
  • Injury: obviously, try to be careful. But that goes for the more insidious version too! For example, if you spend a lot of time at your computer, consider an ergonomic mouse and keyboard.

Writer’s note: as you might guess, I spend a lot of time at my computer, and a lot of that time, writing. I additionally spend a lot of time reading. I also have assorted old injuries from my more exciting life long ago. Because of this, it’s been an investment in my health to have:

A standing desk

A vertical ergonomic mouse

An ergonomic split keyboard

A Kindle*

*Far lighter and more ergonomic than paper books. Don’t get me wrong, I’m writing to you from a room that also contains about a thousand paper books and I dearly love those too, but more often than not, I read on my e-reader for comfort and ease.

If you already have peripheral neuropathy

Most advice popular on the Internet is just about pain management, but what if we want to treat the cause rather than the symptom?

Let’s look at the things commonly suggested: try ice, try heat, try acupuncture, try spicy rubs (from brand names like Tiger Balm, to home-made chilli ointments), try meditation, try a warm bath, try massage.

And, all of these are good options; do you see what they have in common?

It’s about blood flow. And that’s why they can help even in the case of peripheral neuropathy that’s not painful (it can also manifest as numbness, and/or tingling sensations).

By getting the blood flowing nicely through the affected body part, the blood can nourish the nerves and help them function correctly. This is, in effect, the opposite of what the causes of peripheral neuropathy do.

But also don’t forget: rest

  • Put your feet up (literally! But we’re talking horizontal here, not elevated past the height of your heart)
  • Rest that weary wrist that has carpal tunnel syndrome (again, resting it flat, so your hand position is aligned with your forearm, so the nerves between are not kinked)
  • Use a brace if necessary to help the affected part stay aligned correctly
    • You can get made-for-purpose wrist and ankle braces—you can also get versions that are made for administering hot/cold therapy, too. That’s just an example product linked that we can recommend; by all means read reviews and choose for yourself, though. Try them and see what helps.

One more top tip

We did a feature not long back on lion’s mane mushroom, and it’s single most well-established, well-researched, well-evidenced, completely uncontested benefit is that it aids peripheral neurogenesis, that is to say, the regrowth and healing of the peripheral nervous system.

So you might want to check that out:

What Does Lion’s Mane Actually Do, Anyway?

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