Medicinal mushrooms hold an important place in traditional medicine. They’ve been used for centuries to preserve vitality, promote longevity and treat disease.
Reishi mushrooms, in particular, are held in high esteem for their anti-cancer, anti-inflammatory and immune strengthening potential. They contain an impressive array of bioactive molecules, but their health benefits are mainly linked to reishi polysaccharides and triterpene acids (TA).
TAs are compounds with remarkable cancer-fighting properties. They’ve been shown to suppress growth and spread of cancer cells and promote their programmed suicide.
Triterpene acids work in synergy with polysaccharides. These complex sugars enhance immune system’s own capacity to fight different types of cancer.Unnoticeably to us, cancer cells appear in our bodies every day. However, a healthy immune system can effectively detect and destroy them before they get a chance to develop into full-blown malignancies. This process is called immune surveillance.
Remarkably, cancerous cells can release compounds that inhibit immune surveillance as a way of escaping detection and destruction. Reishi polysaccharides counteract this process. Moreover, they stimulate production of additional immune cells that attack and destroy cancer cells. They also prevent formation of abnormal blood vessels which feed tumours.
Reishi mushrooms are available as capsules, tinctures and dry powders. Due to the growing popularity of these mushroom you can even find functional foods with rishi, like reishi tea and coffee. These products have varying levels of active compounds and efficacy. It is therefore always advisable to consult a health professional before using reishi, or any other nutritional supplements, on your own.