Chinese medicine, Mushrooms, natural health, alternative medicine, healing, new paradigm, ancient medicine, raising awareness, tonics, disease prevention Mushrooms are a big part of traditional medicine in many cultures, such as China.

Mushrooms are Nature’s Ancient Medicine

-by Paul Fassa
Health Impact News

Mushrooms are accepted as culinary delights that are mixed in certain dishes or used as toppings on pizzas. But their tonic and healing qualities are unknown to most in the West. For centuries, Asian, especially Chinese, and Eastern European cultures have used various mushrooms as tonics for improving health and medicinally for curing a wide variety of diseases.

Traditional use of mushrooms for health involve boiling them in water. However, extracts and powders are available from various sources, usually online, but some locations may have Chinese specialty or herbal stores that feature mushroom extracts and powders, sometimes encapsulated, as well. Sometimes you may even find whole medicinal mushrooms in specialty shops.

The comprehensive guide by Robert Rogers, The Fungal Pharmacy, lists over 270 species of fungi with known medicinal properties, including antioxidant, blood pressure lowering, cholesterol reducing, liver protection, anti-diabetic, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, and immune modulating properties.

Some have anti-cancer properties sufficient for healing with other natural modalities or ameliorating the adverse effects of harsh orthodox oncology treatments. Although some medicinal mushrooms can be eaten fresh, their medicinal qualities are unleashed fully by hot water (teas) or alcohol (food grade) tincture extractions.

Mushrooms tend to be adaptogenic, meaning they adjust the necessary immune responses according to what is needed. They are intelligent and work with the body’s innate intelligence. It doesn’t get any more natural than that.

The essence of mushroom nutrition is mycelium, a filamentous cobweb-like cellular intelligent biological network of enzymes that created the cellular foundation of all food some 2 billion years ago.

This article will list five well known medicinal herbs as examples of their healing power, leaving it to the reader to research for others as well as more in depth of those mentioned here.

Reishi Mushrooms (Lingzhi or Ganoderma)

Reishi has a long history of use going back at least 2000 years in China. It is probably the most researched and popular medicinal mushroom in the West. It is a tree mushroom that grows on hardwood trees in warm and temperate climates. It’s appearance is easily spotted because of its usually intense red cap.

It has the usual adaptogenic immune characteristics of most mushrooms, but also directly affects the endocrine system’s glandular hormonal production, stability, and balance. Reishi alcohol extracts contain compounds that reverse depression, reduce stress, and promote relaxing deep sleep.

Reishi’s antioxidant capacity helps minimize the threat of cancer, and it also helps create more “killer cells” when needed to help fight cancer cells and even shrink tumors.

Chaga Mushrooms (Inonotus obliquus)

This dark mushroom, which externally resembles a cancerous tumor, grows on the usually white barks of birch trees in colder climates. It does not look like a mushroom, and whether it is symbiotic or parasitic with the birch tree is sometimes argued.

But once removed, it is a powerful immune adaptogenic with anti-tumor power. It can even induce apoptosis in cancer cells. Apoptosis is a natural cell death of healthy cells to make way for new ones. Cancer cells don’t do apoptosis on their own. Thus they continue to survive. So apoptosis has to be created within them.

Though common in extreme northern regions of Finland and Russia, it is also wild harvested in Canada, the major source of American chaga chunks that can be used for teas powdered for capsules.

The chaga mushroom’s healing abilities were popularized in literature by the 1968 Russian novel The Cancer Ward by literature Nobel Laureate Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, an outspoken Soviet dissident during the oppressive Soviet Union’s time. In that novel, the protagonist, Kostoglokof cures himself of cancer and tells others in the Siberian cancer ward about it.

Here’s an excerpt from his novel, “He could not imagine any greater joy than to go away into the woods for months on end, to break off this chaga, crumble it, boil it up on a campfire, drink it and get well like an animal. To walk through the forest for months, to know no other care than to get better! Just as a dog goes to search for some mysterious grass that will save him . . .”

Solzhenitsyn confided that his highly praised novel was based on his own experience of surviving cancer using chaga mushroom teas in a Siberian prison ward where he had been sentenced for his dissident literature during the harsh Soviet Communist regime. (Source)

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