Imagine taking a single supplement and getting a world of benefits out of it…
If you’re struggling with mounting stress, want to lose a little weight, and reduce your risk of getting heart disease and other outrageous conditions, there is a simple supplement out there that you can take that will make a world of difference – and it’s pretty ancient.
If you want to talk about ancient medicines or even antiques, Reishi mushrooms are it!
These mushrooms have been around for hundreds of years, and while they’re mainly found in Asian countries, they’re becoming popular for treating several infections in the Western world in recent times.
What you’ve heard about Reishi mushrooms isn’t just idle gossip and generally comes down to preliminary research underway.
If you’re looking for the real lowdown on what they’re good for, we’ve got the scoop.
This article will tell you everything you need to know about the beneficial effects of Reishi mushrooms before you get your chew on.
Table of Contents
Reishi mushrooms are also called Lingzhi mushrooms (the Chinese name) or Ganoderma lucidum and have been fondly nicknamed “The Mushroom of Immortality” in English.
They are fungi found growing in hot, humid Asian countries and are used as medicinal mushrooms. In fact, Reishi is a staple in Eastern medicine (or traditional Chinese medicine) and is starting to grow in popularity in Western medicine.
Because Reishi mushrooms are somewhat rare, you won’t find them sold in the local grocery store. They prefer to grow at the bases of deciduous trees in China, Japan, and so on.
The good stuff (more formally called bioactive compounds), which are the molecules found happily existing within these mushrooms, are responsible for their health benefits.
It consists of polysaccharides, triterpenoids, and peptidoglycans. You will also find a selection of minerals, vitamins, amino acids, and dietary fiber hiding inside Reishi mushrooms.
If you’ve ever cast your gaze on a Reishi mushroom, it’s a fan or kidney-shaped dark mushroom with a pop of orange or red. The mushroom is also quite shiny on top, making it ultra alluring to mushroom pickers and people who like shiny things (wink).
This mushroom is slightly different from the mushrooms you might have seen before as it’s a polypore. Essentially, this means that it doesn’t have the usual gills but rather a white underside with tiny little dots on it.
When it comes to using Reishi as a supplement, it is most often ground into a powder or used as an extract. Most nootropic stores sell versions of this mushroom.
While most people think of popping some mushrooms into their favorite pasta, others have discovered an entirely new purpose for some mushroom strains, natural medicine.
Gone are the days when you had to pop a headache pill with who knows what to get rid of a thumping headache.
Now you can ingest something more natural. If you’re wondering what Reishi mushrooms are used for, you’re in for a treat yourself!
As it turns out, these pretty little mushrooms are good dietary supplements for just about everything, from aiding fatigue to cancer. But just in case you’d like a list of the benefits of Reishi for various health conditions, see below:
- High blood pressure
- High blood sugar
- Cardiovascular disease
- Liver disease
- Viral infections (flu)
- HIV and AIDS
- Kidney disease
- Cancer treatment (given to cancer patients during chemotherapy and standard cancer treatments)
- High cholesterol
- Respiratory conditions (asthma)
- Shingles-related pain
- Strength building
With so many health benefits, it’s hard to imagine that someone wouldn’t want to invest in a few delicious Reishi gummies to reap all the rewards of a healthy daily dose.
Now you know that Reishi can lower blood pressure and aid in the treatment of various other physical conditions that cause oxidative stress. It’s time to take a closer look at the benefits and how mushrooms work to boost body health.
Without further ado, let’s explore the various Reishi benefits for healthy adults (and not-so-healthy adults too):
- Reishi, The Immune Booster
According to the National Library of Medicine, research has proven that Reishi mushrooms play a rather hefty role in giving immune systems a boost – a healthy immune response.
A few studies done in test tubes have also uncovered that Reishi can affect the actual genes found in white blood cells. Increased white blood cells mean better immune function, which in turn ensures better health.
White blood cells are considered natural killer cells as they get to work obliterating infections (and cancer) in the body! Reishi mushrooms and quality Reishi mushroom extract also give your lymphocyte function a boost, helping to fight infection.
- Improves Heart Health To Fight Heart Disease
It’s been said that Reishi mushrooms increase cholesterol. Okay, before you freak out and demand to know why increasing cholesterol is good, some elaboration is needed.
The first thing you need to know is that it’s HDL cholesterol that Reishi increases, which is “good” cholesterol. LDL cholesterol is the “bad” cholesterol that should be avoided. HDL absorbs LDL cholesterol and carries it back to the liver.
The liver then flushes the cholesterol from the body, thus decreasing your chances of having a stroke or developing heart disease. You might find it interesting that Reishi mushrooms are jam-packed with over 400 nutrients. Some of these nutrients include excellent showstoppers such as triterpenoids and beta-glucans.
These are responsible for knocking blood pressure levels down and decreasing blood sugar levels.
- Eternal Youthfulness
For centuries, women have been hunting for the proverbial fountain of youth – many men too. Oh, to be youthful forever and look it too, right? What if we told you that we have the secret to longevity and youthfulness, and it’s not a fountain? Here’s the scoop: Reishi mushrooms aren’t called “Mushrooms of Immortality” and “King of Mushrooms” ( “Queen of Mushrooms”) for nothing.
Herbal medicine in Asian cultures has been revered as the natural cure for aging! In fact, in ancient times, it was consumed because people believed the mushroom could give them immortality.
We know that Reishi mushrooms have antioxidant properties that can neutralize free radicals. And when free radicals are neutralized, the risk of premature aging and chronic diseases that cause it are reduced. If you’re looking for a way to keep that youthful glow, rumor has it that Reishi mushrooms are a step in the right direction.
- Anti-Inflammatory Properties
We all know that inflammation inside the body may be hard to see, but it can certainly be felt. The aches, pains, swelling, and discomfort are the cornerstones of white blood cells flowing in to fight infection and help you heal. Those with arthritis and other aches and pains may find that taking a chemical anti-inflammatory brings relief.
But, if you’re the type that prefers a more natural approach, you may want to try Reishi mushroom supplements.
People who suffer from gout or arthritis who have used Reishi mushroom extracts have found the anti-inflammatory properties quite helpful. This is also one of the reasons why so many people choose Reishi mushrooms for headache relief.
- Anti Cancer Functions
Reishi mushroom supplements need no introduction to cancer sufferers.
Reishi has really been creating a buzz among cancer patients and their loved ones, thanks to the researchers who have been working on finding natural remedies.
A large portion of breast cancer survivors actually consume Reishi mushrooms, especially since studies show they can help kill off cancer cells.
It’s also been said that Reishi mushrooms may play a role in reversing prostate cancer. That said, some further studies claim to not support that.
So what makes Reishi mushrooms possibly ideal for cancer patients to supplement with?
Well, they’re quite efficient at increasing the health and prevalence of white blood cells, which are soldiers in the fight against cancer. While more research is needed to conclude the findings, it’s undeniable that Reishi mushrooms can improve a patient’s quality of life.
- Obliterates Fatigue & Depression
Quality of life is important to all of us, and we all know that feeling fatigued or a little down in the dumps can detract from that quality. This is where Reishi mushrooms shine.
They’re known to put depression and fatigue in their place, and if you’re wondering where that place is, it’s far away from your daily life experience.
A small study involving 132 people shows that people with neurasthenia, a condition that’s brought on by fatigue, improved greatly after just eight weeks of supplementing with Reishi.
Many studies have been done involving taking Reishi powder where people have reported reduced anxiety, depression, and fatigue and experiencing increased energy levels.
- Promotes Gut Health
If only there were a supplement you could take to normalize gut function and get rid of unwanted weight at the same time. If you’re looking for a product that can effectively reduce the risk of developing ulcers and lower fat in the body simultaneously, Reishi mushroom powder is a marvelous solution.
Reishi promotes good gut health and helps you get to a healthy weight – which is an excellent power duo.
When taking natural medicines, it’s still important to know about the risks and potential side effects, even if all the benefits have already won you over.
If you use Reishi mushrooms for 3 to 6 months, you may want to watch out for possible allergic reactions. It may cause an allergy that results in dryness of the nasal passages, mouth, and throat in some. A few people experienced other side effects, such as itchiness, headaches, upset stomach, dizziness, nosebleeds, and bloody stools.
It’s also important to note that because Reishi mushrooms or Reishi extract can lower blood pressure, it is not recommended for those who already have low blood pressure.
Reishi mushrooms should also not be taken by anyone with existing liver function problems or taking medications to treat liver conditions. Reishi mushrooms are recognized as supplements, and while the drug administration authorities do regulate dietary supplements, they are treated more like foods than medications.
If you are concerned about the interactions that Reishi mushrooms could have with any medication you’re taking or if you have a serious medical condition, it’s best to ask your doctor before ingesting.
Once you’ve absorbed all the health benefits of Reishi mushrooms, you’re probably chomping at the bit to give them a try.
So, how much should you take?
First, keep in mind that most of the evidence regarding effectiveness comes from animal studies, even though some small human studies do exist. This means that no exact science stipulates the perfect dose for each individual. People who use herbs and other natural medicines for health have noticed that dosage often depends on your age, what you’re trying to treat, whether you’re taking a mushroom extract or a fresh mushroom, and, of course, your overall general wellbeing.
If you’re starting out, these dosages are standard:
- 1 ml if you’re taking Reishi tincture.
- 1.5 to 9 g if you’re taking crude dried mushrooms.
- 1 to 1.5 g if you’re taking Reishi mushroom powder.
It’s encouraged to rather ingest Reishi as a tasty gummy or supplement, as it can have quite a bitter taste. Taking higher doses of Reishi mushrooms can leave you suffering from negative side effects.
While there are a few risks or side effects associated with taking Reishi supplements, the user experience has been somewhat overwhelmingly good. If you’re planning to give them a try, test out our gummy range.