Reishi Mushroom (Ganoderma lucidum) in cancer treatment, has been in use for centuries and is also known to heal diseases like diabetes, cancer, inflammation, ulcer as well as bacterial and skin infections. In India, however, the potential of the fungus is still being explored.
It is one of the most important medicinal mushrooms in the world since its chemical constituents exhibit numerous medicinal properties. They have earned it monikers such as “mushroom of immortality”, “celestial herb” and “auspicious herb”. It is “red reishi mushroom” too.
The history of consumption of this mushroom go back to 5,000 years ago in China. It also finds mention in the historical and medical records of countries like Japan, Korea, Malaysia and India.
With time, many researchers recognised this fungus and tried to identify its constituents and properties.
Benefits of Reishi Mushrooms in cancer treatment
Ganoderma contains more than 400 chemical constituents, including triterpenes, polysaccharides, nucleotides, alkaloids, steroids, amino acids, fatty acids and phenols. These show medicinal properties such as immunomodulatory, anti-hepatitis, anti-tumour, antioxidant, antimicrobial, anti-HIV, antimalarial, hypoglycaemic and anti-inflammatory properties.
The following are five scientific Reishi mushroom benefits. Evidence supports the first three. whereas the others are less conclusive.
Immune System Booster in cancer treatment
The ability of the reishi mushroom to enhance your immune system is one of its most important effects. While certain details are still unknown, test-tube studies have indicated that reishi can influence the genes in white blood cells, which are important components of your immune system.
Furthermore, these studies have discovered that some reishi forms may alter inflammatory pathways in white blood cells. The chemicals boost the activity of a type of white blood cell (natural killer cells). Natural killer cells help the body fight against infections and cancer.
Another research found that reishi can boost the amount of other white blood cells (lymphocytes) in colorectal cancer patients. Some data suggests that it can also benefit healthy people.
In one research, the fungus enhanced lymphocyte function, which aids in the fight against infections and cancer, in athletes subjected to stressful situations.
Other studies in healthy individuals, however, found no change in immune function or inflammation after 4 weeks of consuming reishi extract.
It’s cancer fighting properties are famous. A Large number of people consume this fungi. In instance, one research of nearly 4,000 breast cancer survivors discovered that around 59% consumed reishi mushroom.
Furthermore, numerous test-tube studies have indicated that it can cause cancer cells to die. Some studies have looked at whether reishi might help with prostate cancer because of its effects on the hormone testosterone.
According to one study, one year of reishi treatment reduced the number and size of tumours in the large intestine. It stimulates the activity of the body’s white blood cells, which helps in the fight against cancer and improves the quality of life in cancer patients.
Could Help With Fatigue and Depression
One research examined its effects on 132 patients suffering from neurasthenia, a poorly defined disease characterised by aches, pains, dizziness, headaches, and irritability.
After 8 weeks of taking the supplements, the researchers discovered that fatigue was decreased and well-being improved.
It can also help with the quality of sleep which is so precious in today’s life!
Has Cardioprotective Properties
Reishi has cardioprotective properties. Researchers have reported that active compounds in reishi, especially triterpenes, can support blood pressure and cholesterol management. Reishi supports blood flow and oxygen consumption in the cardiac muscle. It may also inhibit platelet aggregation and complement activation that cause dangerous blood clots.
How to take reishi mushroom
While reishi mushrooms are edible, you wouldn’t want to eat them the way that you consume most other edible mushrooms. In its raw state, it also has quite a bitter and unpleasant taste.
So to consume reishi, it’s traditionally made into a hot water extract (a soup or tea.) Fresh or dried pieces of reishi is powdered. the powder is put in boiling water.
The mushroom simmers for about two hours. This process repeats to make the liquid even more concentrated.
This creates a dark and bitter tasting drink. Red reishi mushrooms also tend to be more bitter than the black variety.
Reishi mushrooms are made into an extract. You can take them in a liquid, powder, or capsule form that greatly or completely eliminates the unpleasant bitter flavour associated with the mushroom. You can simply buy Medizen-reishi-mushrooms and make them a part of your daily diet.
What are the possible side effects of reishi?
Taking reishi mushroom extract for up to a year might be safe, but taking the powdered form of reishi for more than a month could damage the liver.
- Other side effects of reishi mushrooms include dry mouth, rashes, upset stomach, diarrhea, headache, nosebleed, and dizziness.
- The safety of reishi mushroom in pregnant women and women who are breastfeeding has not been thoroughly studied.
- High doses of reishi could increase bleeding risk in people with certain bleeding disorders, including thrombocytopenia (low level of platelets in blood).
- Taking high doses of reishi before or during surgery could increase the risk of bleeding.
- Because reishi might reduce blood pressure, it might worsen low blood pressure in people whose blood pressure is already low.