Reishi: The Most Popular Medicinal Mushroom
Reishi mushroom (Ganoderma lucidum) has wide-ranging applications and deserves a close look. Based on research, there are many conditions that appear to improve when Ganoderma is consumed regularly.
The sterols in reishi show activity in some studies as hormone precursors. Platelet aggregation is inhibited by the adenosine in reishi, a compound found also in Cordyceps. Other compounds in reishi are shown in research to have a beneficial action on blood sugar regulation.
In recent decades the class of herbs known as adaptogens has garnered great interest, likely due to the significant amount of stress under which many people work and live. Adaptogens as an area of investigation trace back to Dr. Israel Brekhman’s original research—in fact it was only due to his investigations that the term “adaptogen” was coined; it is not at all a traditional herbal category, but it has shown its value as a modern addition to herbal medicine. In brief, adaptogens are substances that assist the body in adapting to various stressors, whether they be the stress of long work hours, excess exercise, temperature challenges (e.g., living in a very cold environment), or emotional factors.
The triterpenes in Ganoderma lucidum are reported to possess such adaptogenic properties. Beyond this adaptogenic property the reishi triterpenes also display anti-hypertensive properties. Hepatic fibrosis is also shown to be inhibited by these triterpenes.
But this is still not the full extent of the areas where reishi shows healing virtue as demonstrated in various studies. It is an important substance for cardiovascular health, is used in Japan in a supportive role with various types of cancer, demonstrates neuro-protective actions, assists healthy sleep, and reduces anxiety.
One can readily see that Ganoderma is virtually the ideal substance to help people deal with the challenges of the modern age in which almost everyone is overworking, eating less-than-ideal food on the run, sleeping poorly (and not enough), sitting at a desk all day and on a sofa at night watching television, all while being overwhelmed by stress.
It is only because of its rich, long history of use as a tonic substance in China and Japan that modern science has focused its lens on Ganoderma. Tradition pointed the way, and so we need to look at what the ancients thought of this mushroom.
Its Chinese name, lingzhi, tells us much about how it was revered. As a term, lingzhi first appears in Han Dynasty literature. Wikipedia can be consulted for a fuller discussion of the name (https://en.wikipedia.org/ wiki/Lingzhi_mushroom), but we can easily settle on a translation of “spirit plant of longevity.”
That is saying a lot in traditional literature to ascribe those sorts of properties to Ganoderma: a tonic substance with spirit-calming and spirit-strengthening properties that promotes long life. Such designations were not given out lightly in the classical herbal literature of China. Many ancient artworks depict a wandering sage with reishi in one hand. And a staff in the other.
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Article source: Blue Poppy Product Information Sheet
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