Reishi is a mushroom that is commonly found in Asian countries. The mushroom, which is commonly known as the God of Fungi, has many potential health benefits such as, but not limited to, reducing cancer, reducing stress and anxiety, boosting the immune system, and even improving sleep.
Reishi is relatively new to Western cultures but has been used in Asian countries for thousands of years. In its natural form, the mushroom has a bitter taste which may not be enjoyed by many. However, due to its growing popularity in Western medicine, more variations of the mushroom have been created.
The most common way to consume it is through tea. However, it can also be purchased in powdered form, capsules, or liquid extracts. These variations may be preferable for those who do not like the bitter taste.
Reishi Benefit #1: Boosts Immune Response
Due to its antioxidant properties, Reishi has the potential to boost the immune system. In a study done on patients with advanced colon cancer, it was found that when they consumed 5.4g/day of an oral reishi supplement for 12 weeks, their white blood cell count increased. These white blood cells, known as natural killer cells, are crucial in activating the immune system and fighting pathogens.
In a similar study, it was found that the consumption of reishi may inhibit the growth and spread of cancer cells. The hypotheses behind this finding is that reishi contains beta-glucans. Beta-glucans are complex sugars that are abundant in reishi and help fight cancer cells.