Reishi Mushroom Health Benefits (& Why I Drink Mine)

Mushrooms are scrumptious after all (like in this homemade cream of mushroom soup recipe), however they will also be extremely therapeutic. Reishi mushrooms are notably particular as they’re one of many oldest mushrooms used medicinally and have been as soon as reserved for under royalty!

What Are Reishi Mushrooms?

Reishi mushrooms are a gaggle of mushrooms which might be native to Japan, China, and Korea. The Chinese identify for this mushroom is lingzhi, however it’s best recognized in America as reishi (its Japanese identify).

Historically, it has been utilized in conventional Chinese medication for not less than 2,000 years. In the unique textbook of conventional Chinese medication, it was the very best ranked of all crops and fungi for its advantages to the physique.

It’s been mentioned that reishi (and lingzhi) interprets as quite a few names together with “Queen of Mushrooms,” “Possessed of Soul Power,” “Herb of Spiritual Potency,” “Mushroom of Immortality,” and “Magic Fungus.” (Hmm… I’ll move on that final one.)

Why all of the fuss? I needed to search out out.

Healing Benefits of Reishi Mushroom

I knew mushrooms might be good for you, however this “Queen of Mushrooms” has an particularly wonderful means to heal and steadiness the physique.

Regulates the Immune System

Studies present reishi mushroom could regulate the immune system in addition to enhance its pure means to battle invaders. A 2006 examine revealed within the Journal of Ethnopharmacology exhibits that reishi mushroom is an immune system modulator.

That means reishi isn’t just an immune stimulator (nor an immunosuppressant). It can really adapt and do both relying on the physique’s want on the time (fairly wonderful!).

Just as reishi mushrooms can enhance the immune system when there’s an an infection, it might additionally dial it again when an autoimmunity is present. A 2002 examine revealed in Life Science discovered that a technique reishi mushrooms enhance the immune system is by serving to develop and strengthen T- and B-cells (defender cells) within the physique.

Reishi mushrooms additionally:

  • Speed wound therapeutic – A 2006 examine discovered that Reishi additionally has superior wound therapeutic skills.
  • Makes antibiotics simpler – A examine revealed within the International Journal of Medicinal Mushrooms discovered that reishi boosts the antimicrobial motion of antibiotics.
  • May battle herpes – A 2000 examine discovered that the polysaccharides and triterpenes in reishi bind to viruses and cease them from getting into and attaching to wholesome cells.

Protects Against Cancer

A wholesome immune system can even assist battle and stop illnesses (comparable to most cancers), however this mushroom has particular mechanisms for concentrating on most cancers.

Typical chemotherapy works by “poisoning” the physique, in hopes that it’s going to hurt the most cancers cells (with out harming wholesome cells past restore). Obviously, it’s not an ideal remedy (more on that here) and might trigger a number of hurt to wholesome cells. Reishi could also be a promising complement that may assist defend the physique.

A 2011 examine revealed within the Journal of Clinical and Cellular Immunology exhibits that one compound of reishi mushrooms, ganoderic acid, can induce apoptosis (pure cell loss of life) whereas decreasing toxicity to wholesome cells.

A 2010 Chinese examine discovered that ganoderic acid also inhibits tumor growth and the flexibility of most cancers cells emigrate within the physique.

Lastly, a examine revealed in Oncology Letters discovered that reishi makes melanoma cells extra weak to pure killer (NK) cells. (These are cells which might be chargeable for attacking tumor and viral contaminated cells).

Though extra analysis is required to deliver reishi into mainstream most cancers remedy, this medicinal mushroom appears to have promise.

Longevity Boosting

Reishi isn’t known as the “Mushroom of Immortality” for nothing. One of its claims to fame is as a long life herb. It is smart that if reishi can enhance immunity and cut back coronary heart illness that it might probably lengthen a lifespan. But what’s actually attention-grabbing is how a lot it might enhance longevity.

In a 2011 examine reishi was proven to increase the lifespan of mice by 9 to 20 % (that will be seven to 16 years for people!).

Some of the methods reishi can enhance longevity are:

  • Reduces oxidative stress – A 2005 research exhibits reishi defend mobile DNA from oxidant injury that causes growing old.
  • Antioxidant energy – A 2011 assessment exhibits that reishi has a excessive degree of antioxidants that assist battle growing old. These antioxidants can cut back dermal and mobile oxidation. In easy phrases, which means decreasing indicators of pores and skin growing old and inner indicators of mobile growing old!
  • Triperpenes– This particular compound in Reishi is a kind of terpenoid is thought to enhance circulation and assist with every thing from pores and skin to psychological focus.

Liver Boosting

Reishi mushroom is taken into account an adaptogenic herb, which implies it helps the physique adapt to the stressors round it. When the surface surroundings is especially poisonous, the liver struggles. That’s why adaptogenic herbs normally concentrate on liver health.

A examine revealed in Food and Chemical Toxicology discovered that reishi protects towards liver toxicity and promotes liver cell regeneration.

Additionally, a 2013 examine revealed within the International Journal of Medicinal Mushrooms discovered that the antioxidants in reishi assist cut back immune features that decrease liver operate.

Heart Protective

Heart illness is the main reason behind loss of life within the US. There are many components that contribute to coronary heart illness together with life-style decisions and eating regimen. But for these already making good life-style decisions and nonetheless haveing coronary heart points, reishi could also be assist.

According to Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, compounds known as triterpenes in reishi could assist cut back blood stress. They also can sluggish blood clotting. Two of reishi’s most prevalent triterpenes are ganoderic acid and sterols. Studies present that sterols will help decrease ldl cholesterol and enhance blood circulation. Ganoderic acids might also enhance oxygen circulate.

Blood Sugar Help

It’s not unusual for individuals with coronary heart illness to even have diabetes. In individuals with diabetes, reishi could assist cut back each ldl cholesterol and insulin resistance, in response to a examine revealed within the British Journal of Nutrition.


Antioxidants are recognized to probably defend the mind from injury as a result of they neutralize oxidative stress. Reishi has numerous antioxidants, so it is smart that reishi could be neuroprotective.

Researchers imagine that reishi could defend the mind from oxidative injury, which protects towards degenerative illnesses like Alzheimer’s and Huntington’s illness, in response to a 2012 examine revealed in Experimental and Toxicologic Pathology.

But analysis exhibits that it could be greater than antioxidants that assist defend the mind. Another examine revealed within the Journal of Ethnopharmacology discovered that reishi promoted the modulation of cytokines throughout the mind. By doing so, reishi could act as a neuroprotective herb.

Help for Seasonal Allergies

The ganoderic acids on this energy mushroom will help inhibit histamine response. For this cause, it’s a frequent complement for these with seasonal allergic reactions. In truth, within the guide Healing Mushrooms: A Practical and Culinary Guide to Using Mushrooms for Whole Body Health, the creator Tero explains a sensible case when he realized the facility of reishi for allergic reactions:

A colleague of his suffered terrible seasonal allergic reactions for weeks every spring. He started taking 1,000 mg of resihi every day and his allergy signs disappeared virtually solely. Of course, this is only one instance, however science could possibly clarify why it labored for him.

When uncovered to allergens, the physique releases histamines which cling to cells. This causes cells to swell and leak fluid… thus the sneezing and runny nostril! Since this useful mushroom will help inhibit this histamine response, it’s usually useful for allergic reactions.

Are Reishi Mushrooms Safe?

Reishi mushrooms are thought of a protected herb to eat when used appropriately. The technique of extraction is necessary although. Some antagonistic reactions have been related to sure extracts from contaminated sources.

Dual extraction gives the utmost profit. In this course of, the fats soluble and water soluble properties are extracted individually to get a excessive efficiency completed product. Alcohol extraction extracts the fats soluble compounds by basically making a tincture and utilizing an extended and sluggish extraction. Then, mushrooms are boiled and simmered to extract the utmost quantity of water soluble compounds. The mixed extract then will get concentrated and spray dried to create a powder.

Other strategies may make a tincture (fats soluble compounds solely) or powder the mushroom, decreasing the profit.

Safety of reishi for young children, pregnant or breastfeeding ladies, or these with liver illness hasn’t been established. It’s at all times finest to speak along with your physician to debate whether or not reishi is correct for your loved ones.

Consuming Reishi

As a medicinal herb, reishi is prime notch. But as a culinary addition — I’d counsel leaving it out.

Reishi is finest as a tincture, tea, or in mushroom coffee tea (the place you may’t style it in any respect!). I additionally drink it at night time for assist sleeping.

When selecting a tincture, search for one that’s “pure yield” which implies it makes use of little or no fillers. Ideally your tincture will probably be near 5% filler.

My affiliate accomplice, Four Sigmatic is the only brand I’ve discovered that makes use of the healthiest attainable rising and manufacturing practices in addition to twin extraction. I personally use their coffee, tonics, and teas and they’re scrumptious!

These are our favorites:

  • “Chill” Hot Cacao Mix (with reishi) – No extra scrumptious method to get the advantages of reishi. Rather than boosting power, this one is made to help sleep and leisure. The style is chocolatey with a contact of cinnamon.
  • Reishi Elixir – Contains the next therapeutic dose of reishi (1,500 mg). I promise it doesn’t style like mushrooms both! The style is barely bitter, so I add some almond milk and honey for a pleasant calming drink on the finish of a tense day.

Even my husband who isn’t at all times thrilled to attempt my health experiments will drink these and loves them!

Other Medicinal Mushrooms

There are loads of different mushrooms with confirmed therapeutic advantages. Look for extra posts on them quickly, and right here’s one other one I get in my coffee!

Have you ever used reishi mushrooms or different mushrooms for his or her health advantages? What was your expertise?


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