Benefits of reishi mushroom

Exotic-sounding and intriguing, reishi mushroom may be a newcomer in the Western diet, but Eastern medicine has used it for generations. Fans of reishi say it has a range of benefits for your health, including boosting your immunity and mood. Let’s take a look at what modern scientific research has to say about the health benefits of reishi mushroom.

What is reishi mushroom?

Reishi is a medicinal mushroom which is used in traditional Eastern medicine to treat a range of ailments. It has a flat, ear-shaped cap with a characteristic reddish-orange colour. In the wild, foragers tend to spot it growing at the base of trees, although it also lends itself quite well to cultivation.

What does reishi taste like?

You can eat reishi mushrooms whole, but we wouldn’t recommend it! The whole mushroom has quite a tough texture and can taste bitter, which is why most people don’t generally eat it in the same way as you might eat a mushroom from the grocer’s.

Traditional use of reishi

Traditional Chinese Medicine has made use of Lingzhi, or reishi, for over 2,000 years. Early medical texts such as the Ben Cao Gang Mu, which appeared in around 1590 AD, mention reishi and comment on its health benefits.(1)

“Many believed that reishi only grew in the land of the immortals, on the ‘three aisles of the blest’. They believed that the plants that grew on these islands could grant everlasting life.”

Reishi may boost your immune system

Recent scientific research has looked into the relationship between consuming reishi and the functioning of your immune system.

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It can help you deal with stress

Reishi is an adaptogen, which means it helps to regulate certain functions of your body. This is particularly useful when it comes to stress.

Reishi protects your cells from oxidative damage

During your normal metabolic processes, your cells produce little molecules called free radicals. These occurs when an oxygen molecule is split into two unstable atoms.

It’s antimicrobial

Substances found in reishi have been shown to inhibit the activity of microbes such as viruses and bacteria.

Reishi is high in beta-glucans

One of the types of polysaccharides present in reishi come under the umbrella of beta-glucans (sometimes written as β-Glucans).

How to take reishi

Reishi is commonly available as a supplement or powder. For greater transparency, we recommend taking reishi in powder form.

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