Ever heard of reishi mushrooms? If you haven't then it's time for you to know all the amazing health benefits it has to offer.
—This post is courtesy of Honey Colony. (Original publish date December 7, 2015), Shared with permission—
For over 2,000 years, reishi mushrooms have been an integral ingredient in Chinese medicine. Believed to be a key to immortality, only the elite were once allowed to utilize it’s natural healing power.
Although reishi mushrooms don’t guarantee immortality, their benefits are numerous. You can fight off cell-damaging free radicals, immune disease, inflammation, congestion, irritable bowels, and more – all by consuming this amazing natural mushroom!
Below are 9 Ways That reishi boosts your health in ways you could never imagine!
1. Reishi Mushrooms: Cancer Fighting
Through clinical trials, reishi mushrooms have shown the ability to prevent cancer in addition to being able to diminish existing cancer cells in the body.
Cancer’s danger comes from the inability of old cells to die while continuing to grow and create new and abnormal cells. In a 2011 study, scientists focused on Gandoeric Acid, a soluble extractin reishi mushrooms, as a solution in reversing and removing cancer specific cells. Their results showed Gandoeric Acid had the ability to induce apoptosis (the natural regulation of cell suicide) and lead to a lower toxicity in healthy cells.
Prior to this, a 2010 study focusing on the development of 95-d lung carcinoma cells and HCT-116 (human colon cancer cells) used Gandoeric Acid to inhibit the development and metastasis of tumors. It aided in reducing the cells’ ability to adhere to one another while also limiting their ability to migrate throughout the body.
Reishi have been part of ancient medicine to combat the natural aging process for over 2,00 years. Called “the mushroom of immortality,” studies on the acetic acid show an ability to increase life span.
Reishi has shown the ability to protect cellular and mitochondrial DNA from oxidative damage, increase levels of antioxidant molecules to reduce oxidation of cell membranes, and increase the use of a key gene to promote an increased life span. Through it’s ability to battle natural reactions to our cells and DNA, reishi mushrooms are ideal for combating negative factors that cause damage to our body and organs, and increase our cellular age.
3. Immune booster
The reishi mushroom has the ability to balance the body’s immune system, which is what allows for the ability to combat cancer, bacteria, infections, and infectious diseases.
Reishi has also been shown to reduce symptoms associated with allergies, insect bites, herpes, shingles and asthma attacks. The polysaccharides and triterpenese directly bind to viruses and interfere with their ability to enter and attach to healthy cells. This limits the decrease in cell damage and allows the body to neutralize pathogens at a quicker rate.
Reishi has also proven to aid in increasing the immunity of people with HIV or AIDS.
4. Liver Repair
Our liver regulates blood composition, removes toxins, processes and stores nutrients, breaks down alcohol and drugs, and aids in blood clotting. Through poor diets, smoking, drinking, stress, and sleeping late, we place excess strain on our liver, which can lead to damage and the inability for it to repair itself.
What happens next can be a fatty liver, liver infections such as Hepatitis A, B, C, D, E, cirrhosis, and even liver cancer. Reishi mushrooms naturally enhances Interferon Alpha and Interferon Gamma proteins, which are naturally produced by your immune system. These proteins aid in inhibiting viral replication, strengthening cell resistance against infection, enhancing liver detoxification, improving liver function, and stimulating liver cell regeneration.
Children are also extremely susceptible to liver disease due to obesity and diet. Reishi’s ability to repair the liver allows for proper extraction of toxins from our body.
5. Healthy Gastro-Intestine
Our body provides a natural defense system to protect us from harmful chemicals in the food and drinks we ingest. The beneficial bacteria that reside in our stomach and intestines are able to break down and combat a lot of harmful bacteria and remove them from our system before they interfere with our health. What goes on in our stomach sets the tone for the rest of our body.
Stress and poor nutrition can lead to either too much or too little stomach acid being produced to aid in properly breaking down food and nutrient absorption. The adenosine in reishi mushrooms provides relaxation and calm for gastro-intestinal muscles. This can bring relief to common ailments such as chronic inflammatory bowel disease, constipation, diarrhea, reflux disease, gastritis and ulcers. The anti-inflammatory properties aids in bringing relief through allowing easy water re-abosprtion and electrolyte balance to allow for proper nutrient intake.
6. Lower Blood Pressure
Stress, diet, age, genetics, lack of sleep, and our environment can lead to higher blood pressure.
A trial reported in Microcirculatory Approach to Asian Traditional Medicine found that reishi mushrooms significantly lowered blood pressure in people with more severe high blood pressure rather than slightly high.
Triterpenes, which are unsaturated hydrocarbons, are found in reishi mushrooms and aid in clearing blocked blood vessels by reducing fatty buildups such as cholesterol and triglycerides which tend to cause blockage. Adenosine Monophosphate, a compound of adenosine and acidic phosphate works to dissolve blood clots, which may be present in blood vessels, further aiding in improving blood flow.
7. Healthy Respiratory System
Common respiratory ailments such as asthma, bronchitis, congestion, coughing, and panting devastate many due to pollution and diminished air quality.
With natural anti-inflammatory properties, reishi mushrooms are able to dilate airways to improve breathing. Their ability to bind with oxygen molecules enhances the capacity of alveoli to absorb oxygen, which increases blood flow throughout the entire body. Reishi also works to remove mucus build up to aid in easier breathing and non-restricted air flow throughout the lungs.
Reishi’s powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory abilities allow them to be an extremely effective on neurological diseases such as Alzheimer’s, Huntington’s and Parkinson’s. Triterpenes and polysaccharieds in reishi reduce the impact of oxidative proteins such as Abeta, a common trigger in Alzheimer’s disease, and aids in alleviating mitochondrial dysfunction in the hippocampus. A recent study showed a reversal in damage to the hippocampal neuron, leading researchers to believe that reishi mushrooms might protect the hippocampus from oxidative proteins which cause damage.
In addition, reishi supports the nerve growth factor protein which regulates growth, maintenance, and survival of certain target neurons, all promoting a healthy neuro function.
Our sex drive tends to diminish with age and poor diet. Women over 50 have reported having a low libido. This is in addition to general female population reports that 1 in 3 women have low or no sexual desire at all.
In 2010, Doctor He Yumin, head professor at Shanghai University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, discussed the ability of reishi mushrooms to aid in increasing the libido. He believes the kidneys are the root to increasing passion and desire and through healthy maintenance, we can naturally increase our sex drives. The reishi mushroom has been coined the “magic kidney mushroom” and through its ability to improve blood circulation, detoxify the body and strengthen the immune system, it has the ability to purify the kidney and increase libido and fertility.