Reishi mushroom is known as Ling Zhi in Chinese. It is a functional mushroom that is highly venerated in east Asian cultures to heal various ailments and aid in longevity for thousands of years. The “First Emporor of China” – Qin Shi Huang, who united China in around 200 BCE, had dispatched large expeditions in search of Ling Zhiof immtality. In Hanshu “Book of Han”, written in 82 CE, Reishi is referred to as “Mushroom of Immortality; elixir of life”.
Sounds magical right? Well emperors always have this fascination with immortality, but we sincerely cannot guarantee the immortality function of our Triple Reishi Mushroom. You are certainly welcome to try it out and let us know nonetheless.
So, what is Reishi? There are many types of Reishi Mushroom, and here we will focus on Ganoderma Lucidum, or “Red Reishi”. Reishi mainly grows outdoors, and native to China, Korea and Japan. It is a polypore mushroom which has a corky texture, with a red-varnished, kidney-shaped flat fruiting body. Depending on its age, reishi produces reddish brown spores underneath, which had equal healing powers. Even though it is an edible mushroom but eating fresh Reishi isn’t going to send you to the gastronomic heaven as fresh truffles, and it definitely won’t help you live till the end of time. In Traditional Chinese Medicine, Reishi are usally dried, cut into slices, then boiled in water and steeped to make a healing tonic/tea.
What truly makes Reishi the “Elixir of Life” is its adaptogenic functions. There are 400 different bioactive compounds including fungal immunomodulatory proteins, polysaccharides, triterpenes, coumarin, mannitol and alkaloids. In the past few decades, hundreds of studies conducted in China, Japan, US and UK had shown that Reishi has analgesic, antifungal, antiviral, antiparasetic, cardiovascular and antidiabetic effects.
BALANCE HORMONE– Because Reishi is an immune modulator, it also has the effect to balance hormone. One of the triterpenes, Ganoderic Acid, is a plant sterol and acts as a precursor to hormones in the body. It helps the body to adapt to the potential amount of hormone and thus aiding in achieving homeostasis. It acts as a precursor to hormones.
ANTI-ANXIETY, ANTIDEPRESSION -The triterpenes, including the Ganoderic Acids, which has similar molecular structure to steroid hormones. Reishi also contains calcium, iron, phosphorus, and vitamins C, D, B (including pantothenic acid), which is essential to adrenal glands and nerve functions. These bioactive compounds give reishi it’s grounding, calming adaptogenic qualities. They help our body adapt to its environment and regulate to achieve its most optimal function. As an adaptogen, it helps the body to adapt naturally to the effects of anxiety, fatigue, stress, and trauma on our mind, body and spirit. Synergistically, Reishi helps moderate sleep disorders and insomnia.
ANTI-DIABETIC – Recent studies has proven 4 distinct polysaccharides in Reishi, including Beta-1,3-glucan helps regulate and stabilize blood sugar level. They are found to be active in down-regulating hepatic glucose enzyme mRNA levels and improve insulin resistance.
ANTI-INFLAMMATORY – Inflammation is a hot topic. Modern science had attributed many illness to inflammation. It is your body’s first alert and response to infections, toxins, chemical imbalance and physical injuries. If inflammation is not treated, they lead to more serious chronic illnesses. Chronic inflammation can even cause DNA damage and thus leading to cancer.
ENCHANCE IMMUNITY, ANTIVIRAL AND ANTIMICROBIAL –Reishi is an immune potentiator, which means that it helps to improve the immune system functions regardless whether the immune system is deficient or excessive. In other words, Reishi helps to modulate/regulate the immune system while it is excessive (in cases of auto immune diseases), as well as stimulating the immune system while it is deficient. Ganoderic Acid also showed properties of moderating allergies and allergic reactions associated with asthma by inhibiting the histamine release, and improve oxygen utilization.
CANCER FIGHTING – Reishi itself isn’t able to kill cancer cells, but it activates the body’s own defence system and cancer fighting abilities. Laboratory studies suggest that Reishi mushrooms has antioxidant properties which defends our DNA and can enhance immune response, and thus help the body fight rogue cancer cells. The polysaccharides and triterpenes in Reishi are key to fighting cancer. Beta-glucan may suppress cancer cell growth and spread while triggering the immune system to respond. The triterpenoids inhibits metastases by limiting cancer cell attaching to endothelial cells. Many countries have been testing Reishi as a cancer treatment support, as it helps to alleviate the symptoms of chemotherapy like lowered immune system and nausea.
LIVER PROTECTION – Liver is our body’s cleaner. Without proper functioning liver, the body will be drowned in toxins. The triterpenes specific to Reishi called Ganoderic Acids has hepatoprotective function, which protects the liver from damage. This is part of Reishi’s adaptogenic property. When the body is able to detoxify, it brings the body closer to a balanced state.