Reishi (Lingzhi) – the Sacred Mushroom
The Reishi (Japanese name), Ganoderma (Scientific name), or Lingzhi (Chinese name) mushroom has been used for more than 2,000 years, making it one of the oldest mushrooms known to have been used medicinally. Generally, Reishi is recommended as an adaptogen, immune modulator, and general tonic. Because of its health benefits and absence of side – effects, Reishi has a reputation as the ultimate herbal remedy. It is listed in the American Herbal Pharmacopoeia and Therapeutic Compendium. Numerous researches prove the Reishi’s reputation as an auspicious plant.
Lingzhi has many English translations, such as spiritual, miraculous, sacred, divine, mysterious, efficacious, effective fungus, plant of longevity, auspicious plant, possessed of soul power, herb of spiritual potency, numinous mushroom, and mushroom of immortality.
In 1596, the author of “Compendium of Materia Medica”, Li Shizhen described the effects of red reishi: “It positively affects the life – energy, or Qi of the heart. Taken over a long period of time, the agility of the body will not cease, and the years are lengthened to those of the Immortal Fairy”.
In nature, Reishi grows at the bases and stumps of deciduous trees, especially the maple.Only two or three out of 10,000 such aged trees will have Reishi growth, and therefore its wild form is generally rare. Today, Reishi is effectively cultivated both indoors under sterile conditions and outdoors on either logs or woodchip beds.
There are six different types of reishi, all classified by color.
- The primary benefit of Reishi is its ability to support and modulate the immune system to an optimal level.
- Reishi is an adaptogen and general tonic.
- It is nontoxic and can be taken daily without producing any side effects.
- When it is taken regularly, it can restore the body to its natural state, enabling all organs to function normally.
- It is an immune modulator (i.e. regulates and fine tunes the immune system).
- Reishi is beneficial for both ill and healthy individuals.
- Reishibeing a holistic medicine is equilibrium – enhancing remedy rather than symptom treating drug. Only such kind of medicine can be effective by so many diverse ailments.
After 2,000 years, there are still no side effects reported in available literature and clinical studies.
Reishi is proved to treat:
- Poor liver function
- High blood pressure
- Low immune system
- Common allergies
- Poor blood circulation
- Radiation damages
- Viral, microbial and other infections
- Cardiovascular disease
- Excess cholesterol
Reishi in Cancer Treatment
The immune – boosting action of Reishi is effective in the prevention and treatment of cancer, as the T-cells are then able to fight cancer cells more effectively. However, Reishi may help the body defeat cancer in not just one, but four ways. In addition to boosting the immune system, the glucan in reishi helps immune cells bind to tumor cells. Many experts believe that it also actually reduces the number of cancerous cells, making it easier for T – cells and macrophages to rid the body of them. Another substance in reishi, called canthaxanthin, slows down the growth of tumors, according to “Prescription for Dietary Wellness” author Phyllis A. Balch and other experts. The Japanese government officially recognizes Reishi it as a cancer treatment.
The following list with Reishi benefits was found in a published article titled Medicinal mushrooms: their therapeutic properties and current medical usage with special emphasis on cancer treatments from Cancer Research UK.
- Anti-allergic activity
- Bronchitis-preventative effect, inducing regeneration of bronchial epithelium
- Antibacterial, against Staphylococci, Streptococci, and Bacillus pneumoniae
- Antioxidant, by eliminating free radicals
- Antitumor activity
- Antiviral effect, by inducing interferon production
- Lowers blood pressure
- Enhances bone marrow nucleated cell proliferation
- Cardio tonic action, lowering serum cholesterol levels with no effect on triglycerides
- Enhances myocardial metabolism
- Improves coronary artery hemodynamic
- Enhanced natural killer cell (NK) activity in vitro in mice
- General immunopotentiation
- Anti-HIV activity in vitro and in vivo
- Improved adrenocortical function
- Increased production of Interleukin-1 and 2
How does Reishi work?
The role of Red Reishi in maintaining health can best be explained through the Ayurvedic or Traditional Chinese Medicine point of view because none of the known active components taken alone is as effective as the consumption of Reishi itself. Whereas Western medicine focuses on the “cure” of already existing symptoms, holistic medicine focuses on disease prevention by sustaining the right balance within the body through proper nutrition, exercise, and meditation. Reishi is an important adaptogenic herb in helping the body maintain this balance and also restore the balance, when one is sick.
Reishi is a nutritional supplement that can yield medical benefits through its normalization and regulation of the body’s organs and functions.
As withany other product, not all Reishi are created equal. Reishi products have different levels of quality depending on the manufacturer. Factors such as the method of cultivation, the growing conditions, and the processing method can highly affect the quality of the product. North American Reishi are grown under sterile conditions with high quality standards. You may purchase this excellent remedy on this page.
Are there any side-effects?
No. In the American Herbal Pharmacopoeia®’s published monograph on Reishi mushrooms, Reishi is classified as “Class 1: Herbs that can be safely consumed when used appropriately (McGuffin and others 1997). No side effects were reported in the available clinical literature.
Facts about Reishi:
A considerable number of studies in Japan, China, USA, and the UK in the past 30 years have shown that the consumption of red Reishi has been linked to the treatment of a vast range of diseases, common ailments, and conditions. From asthma to zoster, the applications of red Reishi seem to be related to a multitude of body organs and systems.
For 54 people with hypertension unresponsive to medication, taking reishi three times a day for four weeks was enough to significantly lower blood pressure, excess cholesterol from the blood, reduce platelet stickiness (according to Burton Goldberg in “Heart Disease”).
“Reishi indeed sounds like a cure – all,” writes Rebecca Wood in her book “New Whole Foods Encyclopedia.”
Dr. William B. Stavinhoa of the University of Texas Health Science Center found that reishi is as powerful as five milligrams of hydrocortisone, but with minimal side effects.
According to “Mind Boosters” by Dr. Ray Sahelia, the reishi mushroom can calm the mind, as well as improve memory, concentration and focus.
Reishi can be safely taken as a part of the daily routine to prevent disease.