Reishi, also known as língzhī in Chinese or Ganoderma lucidum in Latin, is a species of wood-decaying, fan-shaped mushroom found on wounded or dead trees in the forests of Asia. In nature it helps breakdown these trees, returning the components to the natural ecosystem. To carry out this challenging activity it contains potent phytochemicals that have, through the centuries, been found to be beneficial to the health of humans, to the point of earning the moniker “divine mushroom of immortality.”
It feels hard and woody and has a bitter taste and is strictly a medicinal mushroom, not a culinary one. It is very rare in the wild and most commercially available products are made from cultivated reishi, which has a similar range of biologically active compounds and healing efficacy to the wild variety.
How does it work?
Reishi has been a part of the Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) pharmacy for over 2000 years. It is called the “divine mushroom of immortality” because of its wide range of effects and influence on human health. In TCM it is used in multiple ways, not limited to the following:
- Nourish and strengthen Qi or life force energy and thereby stimulate the immune system, reduce inflammation and treat conditions ranging from autoimmune conditions to cancer.
- Strengthen multiple organ systems – the heart, immune, kidney, liver, lungs and vascular systems all benefit from regular intake of reishi.
- It’s rejuvenative properties make Reishi the ideal phytonutrient to calm the mind and emotions, encourage healthy sleep and treat exhaustion and restlessness.
- In the lungs in particular, Reishi has been shown to treat both immune and allergic conditions. Coughs, asthma, hay fever, allergies, COPD and emphysema have all been treated with a combination of Reishi and other phytonutrients in the TCM tradition.
- Reishi is a potent antioxidant and is associated with detoxification, longevity and overall good health. It’s antiaging properties have been made it one of the most widely-sought-after medicinal mushrooms in the world.
Western science is slowly catching up to the wisdom of TCM in how it views the healing benefits of reishi. Limited studies have been conducted, already showing the influence of reishi on boosting the genetic profile of white blood cells (a key aspect of the immune system), altering inflammation pathways (in a beneficial way), killing viral infections, fighting various types of cancer (from breast to colon and prostrate), decreasing blood sugar and increasing good cholesterol. Suffice to say, we think the ancient physicians of TCM were correct in calling this the mushroom of immortality.
Reishi either comes in whole powder form, which is gentler and better for mental health and sleep conditions, or as an extract, which is more stimulating and better for treating fatigue, increasing Qi and stimulating the immune system.
Why do we use it?
Phyto Pro Immune Booster uses a standardised extract of Reishi, in combination with a tailored blend of other nourishing nutrients, to strengthen and stimulate the immune system, fight against pathogens like bacteria and viruses, and encourage healing life force.
A standardised extract ensures that each serving of Immune Booster provides you with the same healing and transformative benefits, and removes the risk associated with powder forms due to variation in growing conditions, crop quality and extraction efficiencies.
With a nutraceutical as potent as reishi, there are some adverse effects to be mindful off. These include dryness of the mouth, throat and nasal passages, mild itching and exacerbation of existing bleeding conditions. So, if you are on blood thinning medication, consult your physician before using reishi.