Reishi mushroom (Ganoderma lucidum) has been prized and revered for centuries in the Orient. Believed to have mysterious healing powers, reishi mushroom is highly regarded by the Chinese and referred to as a “heavenly herb.” In China, reishi mushroom has been known to promote vitality and longevity.
Reishi mushroom contains carbohydrates, amino acids, protein, triterpenes, inorganic ions, alkaloids, glucosides, coumarin glycosides, riboflavin, and ascorbic acid. It is used to treat nervousness, insomnia, chronic hepatitis, high cholesterol, hypertension, heart disease, flatulence, and ulcers.
Research has shown that reishi mushroom has anti-allergy, anti-inflammatory, antiviral, antibacterial and antioxidant properties. Furthermore, protein isolated from reishi mushroom may reduce the risk of transplant rejection. Hence, this is encouraging for patients in need of a transplant.
Acts Against Cancer
Reishi mushroom has been widely used in cancer treatment and prevention. Research has shown that reishi mushroom can prevent the proliferation and spread of cancer cells. Japanese researchers discovered that beta- glucans isolated from reishi mushroom have excellent antitumor effects. The beta-glucans in reishi mushroom are polysaccharides and biological response modifiers (BRMs). Studies show these beta-glucans can help to prolong survival in recurrent or advanced gastric cancer, colon cancer, lung cancer, and gynecological cancers. Clinical trials and in vitro experiments have shown the efficiency of beta-glucan BRMs in primary and secondary cancer prevention.
Furthermore, reishi mushroom can prevent cancer recurrence by activating macrophages, natural killer cells and other immune cells, thereby boosting immune functions and preventing cancer. In the treatment of cancer, reishi mushroom can be used to reduce the side effects of chemotherapy, increase patient survival rates, decrease the risk of metastasis, improve quality of life for patients, and prevent cancer recurrence. Reishi mushroom is often used in chemotherapy and radiation therapy to alleviate side effects such as fatigue, loss of appetite, hair loss, bone marrow suppression, infection, and more.
According to Shen Nong Ben Cao Jing (The Divine Farmer’s Materia Medica), reishi mushroom can help boost energy, improve thinking ability, and prevent forgetfulness. Because reishi mushroom has antioxidant properties and can help to prevent memory loss in old age, it is seen as a potential treatment for Alzheimer’s disease, a disease associated with inflammation.
Enhances the Respiratory System
Research shows that reishi mushroom has a healing effect on the lungs and is particularly effective in the treatment of asthma and other respiratory problems. A study in China showed that 60%-90% of over 2,000 patients with chronic bronchitis showed a marked improvement in health after consuming reishi mushrooms for two weeks.