Five Medicinal Mushrooms For Cancer TreatmentRuss Curran
We are going to review the 5 medicinal mushrooms for cancer and how they contribute to better health.
Don’t you just love mushrooms? Mushrooms add flavor and nutritional value to any dish. Did you know that they are also widely used as key ingredients in many forms of Eastern medicine? These 5 medicinal mushrooms for cancer have shown positive effects against this disease.
Medicinal mushrooms are nature’s gifts and people from many parts of the world have long been harnessing its many health benefits including:
- Improving cognitive function. Lion’s mane is a mushroom that supports the production of nerve growth factor (NFG) and myelin which are both vital to brain health. An imbalance can lead to neurological diseases such as Alzheimer’s and multiple sclerosis.
- Boost heart health. Shiitake has been shown to help lower low-density lipoprotein aka bad cholesterol. It also contains compounds that prevent cholesterol absorption and production in the liver.
- Stimulate energy and libido. Cordyceps can help enhance blood flow and promote more efficient use of oxygen in the body. This is especially helpful for athletes or physically active people because it can improve performance as well as post-workout recovery.
- Promote calmness and improve mood. Reishi is a do-it-all medicinal mushroom. Aside from its cancer-fighting properties, it has “mood-boosting compounds” that can help with managing anxiety, depression and promoting better sleep.
There are over 2,000 species of edible mushrooms and all of them contain beta-glucans. Beta-glucans are sugars found in fungi, yeasts, and certain plants. They are used to help boost the immune system and manage various diseases. they also help with health conditions like diabetes, high cholesterol, and even cancer.
Medicinal mushrooms also contain a type of lectins—”carbohydrate-binding proteins”—which are said to “recognize cancer cells” and prevent their further growth or division.
Which medicinal mushrooms can help fight cancer? Here is a rundown of five powerful fungi.
- Reishi (Ganoderma lucidum). In Chinese medicine, Reishi is considered as “one of the great longevity tonics.” It can help boost vitality, strength, and stamina. Among cancer patients who are undergoing chemotherapy, it can aid in managing side effects and protecting the cell’s DNA by improving the body’s antioxidant capacity.
- Turkey Tail (Trametes versicolor, Coriolus versicolor). Turkey tail is a “biological response modifier.” Aside from minimizing the side effects of radiation therapy and enhancing chemotherapy, this medicinal mushroom is also an immune modulator with anti-tumor properties.
- Shiitake (Lentinula edodes). It is one of the most popular mushrooms and while we normally know it as part of a dish, this mushroom contains lentinan—a polysaccharide which enhances the immune system and helps slow down the growth of tumors.
- Cordyceps (Cordyceps sinensis). Cordyceps are used as an immune stimulator. It improves cancer-fighting T Cells and Natural Killer Cells. It also supports white blood cells which are vital to recovering from infections.
- Chaga (Inonotus obliquus). Chaga has strong antioxidant properties which makes it powerful in fighting off free radicals. It contains betulin, a precursor to betulinic acid that promotes apoptosis or programmed cell death among certain cancer cells.
Word of caution: It is NOT SAFE to just go out, pick wild mushrooms and consume them without knowing exactly what they are. Without expert guidance, you risk getting poisoned.
If you are keen to learn more about the cancer-fighting benefits of medicinal mushrooms, get in touch so we can provide a safe and personalized guide.