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Reishi: Your King of Tonics

January 04, 2018

Sometimes called the Elixir of Immortality, Reishi mushroom (or Ling Zhi) has been considered the most valuable mushroom in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) for 3,000 years.

It was long used by Chinese emperors and the royal family for longevity, and to promote wisdom and happiness.

Taoist followers use Reishi for spiritual purposes. To them, reishi calms the shen (spirit). It’s regularly used to improve meditation, mental calm, and centeredness.

Very rare in the wild, reishi is now cultivated to keep up with its great demand in the world.

Reishi Under The Microscope

Reishi is an amazing medicinal mushroom. Clinical research and empirical evidence validates its honored place in TCM.

Studies show reishi polysaccharides offer strong antioxidant protection and free radical scavenging activity.

The antioxidant, beta glucan, in reishi is one of the most powerful, immune protecting substances known. Because of this, reishi is an excellent choice to help counter the effects of pollution, chemical exposure, and UV rays.

Reishi supports proper liver health and has anti-inflammatory benefits. Animal research shows reishi protects against liver toxicity caused by cadmium (a toxic metal).

Other research reveals it can fight fatty liver disease, another very hard to manage but common problem. Reishi mushrooms seem to limit the activity of beta-glucuronidase, an enzyme linked to inflammation, cirrhosis, and jaundice.

Reishi’s Role in Immune Protection & Natural Cancer Therapy

Reishi is one of the best medicinal mushrooms for immune support. Reishi helps reduce allergy symptoms, and can support recovery from bronchitis.

During the 1970’s, a reishi formula tested on 2,000 cases of chronic bronchitis was found to be effective in up to 91% of cases.

After a few months with reishi, patients showed an increase in their immunoglobulin A (Ig A), the major immune system defender in the respiratory tract.

Today, reishi is widely used by natural health practitioners to fight immune weakness and encourage recovery from serious illness, like HIV, Epstein Barre (a culprit in chronic fatigue), and various cancers.

In Japan, the government lists reishi as an adjunctive approach to cancer. Animal research shows reishi can ease nausea caused by chemotherapy.

In vitro tests (with cancer cell lines) find reishi improves the effectiveness of radiation treatments, and could even have a role in protecting against metastasis.

Reishi seems to work by enhancing natural killer cell (NK) activity, so your cells are better able to defend against cancer naturally.

Reishi holds an important place in my own herbal immune programs. It’s the most effective of all medicinal mushrooms to strengthen and revitalize an immune system weakened by chronic stress.

Reishi supports and regulates healthy immune response, and can even encourage recovery after an illness.

For stronger vital energy, it is my go to choice, especially in combination with other tonic herbs like schisandra and astragalus.  Reishi is truly the King of all Tonics.


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