Recently on the Health Insiders Blog, we spent some time re-introducing the topic of medicinal mushrooms; specifically Maitake mushrooms - their benefits and means of safe consumption. Now, we will be shifting the attention to a different type of medicinal mushroom, the Reishi Mushroom. This type of mushroom may be more familiar than maitake, especially for those keen on skincare. Reishi mushroom extract is a popular ingredient in many nourishing and ‘anti-ageing’ products due to its ability to plump and restore healthy skin! Although, it’s not just skincare that reishi mushroom is good for as it’s also an increasingly popular natural supplement that hosts several health benefits of its own! Before we explore some of the ‘most impressive health benefits, relating to the reishi mushroom, we will begin by sharing some background on the mushroom; including how it became so popular in today's natural supplement market. So, let's begin by taking a deeper dive into the reishi mushrooms' origins and then transitions into what they are good for (in terms of health and well-being).
Reishi Mushrooms - Also known as Lingzhi & Ganoderma:
Reishi Mushroom, also known as Lingzhi, is a polypore fungus that is native to East Asia and belongs to the Ganoderma family. Its appearance is reddish-brown with a kidney-bean-shaped cap which resembles a fan (in its full form) giving the mushroom its unique appearance. Reishi is among several medical mushrooms that are believed to have been used for hundreds of years, mainly in Asian counties, to help with the treatment of infections. In more recent times they have been used in the treatment of various lung disorders and cancer treatments. Medical mushrooms, including reishi, have been approved to be a helpful alternative to standard cancer treatment in China and Japan for over three decades; due to the extensive clinical studies supporting its safe for use as a single agent or in combination with chemotherapy cancer treatment. Moreover, reishi mushroom has been used all around the world to help with boosting immunity as well improve energy and reduce stress. These are the benefits that we will, now, begin to explore in more depth…
What are reishi mushrooms good for?
We briefly touched upon several benefits linked to medicinal mushrooms like reishi; one is the inclusion of the mushroom alongside cancer treatments within Asian countries. Although, typically the main uses for medicinal reishi mushrooms (outside of Asia) are predominantly linked to their abilities to improve energy levels, reduce stress and improve overall immunity! Individuals are more likely to source reishi mushroom supplements or powder for these reasons as they are known to be very effective for those who feel their overall immunity could do with a significant boost. It could be due to your poor immunity, that you are suffering from dipped energy levels but increased stress levels. If that is the case then reishi mushroom supplements are a natural aid that is known to be both reliable and effective. Many people love to see the ingredient ‘reishi mushroom complex’ in their skincare; if it can help plump and improve skin health then you can just imagine the good it can do for your body internally!
Can reishi improve energy levels?
The short answer is yes, reishi mushroom is believed to be able to help improve energy levels and chronic fatigue. Whilst not all reishi mushrooms are traditionally supported by modern science, some studies have been successful at linking the biological effects of the medicinal mushroom to improving our health. Reducing chronic fatigue is one of those supported benefits; where an individual is suffering from a condition where tiredness is not being helped by sleep (no matter how much they have). Chronic fatigue and overall depleted energy levels can affect our immune system therefore it’s a condition not to be taken lightly. How does reishi mushroom (supplements) help? Well, the mushroom can be used to help reduce the severity of chronic fatigue due to the mushrooms’ ability to improve our immune system and help fight against free radical damage. Not only that but reishi mushrooms can also help regulate the body's testosterone levels which can also contribute towards healthy energy levels. So, to clarify reishi mushrooms can help improve our energy levels; even in more severe cases where individuals have chronic fatigue! And it all comes down to how well the mushroom can be at improving our immune system...
Does reishi enhance our immune system?
Again the short answer is yes. Reishi mushrooms (and supplements) are believed to significantly impact our body's long-term health. The medicinal mushroom, reishi, claims to be able to affect our white blood cells; which work their way through the bloodstream to help us fight off bacteria, viruses and pathogens. This is how our body (through white blood cells) helps and protects us against illness. Professionally recognised studies show that reishi mushrooms may increase the number of white blood cells in the body as well as improve their overall function. This, therefore, means that the inclusion of reishi mushrooms could play a part in improving our body's natural defence against illnesses. In addition, the more white blood cells we have, the better our chances of improving our overall health! We now know that we can rely on reishi mushrooms to help support our overall immunity long-term; improving our chances of fighting off infections as well as improving our energy levels, reducing stress and even strengthening our bodies' natural defences against autoimmune diseases.
We hope you find our Health Insider Blog a helpful resource that you can count on to answer all of your most pressing questions about wellness and natural supplements. You can find blog posts about collagen, probiotics and medicinal mushrooms; be sure to check out our catalogue to help you find the right post for you. If you have any personal questions or require additional support on a query then you can send us a DM on Instagram where we aim to get to you as soon as possible!