Reishi mushrooms, also known as Ganoderma lucidum, have long been used in traditional Chinese medicine for their medicinal properties. In recent years, they have gained a lot of popularity for their vast array of health benefits, including offering support and healing to the body when exposed to toxic mold.
Before jumping into the benefits of Reishi, let me make a brief statement about toxic mold. A person can become very sick and experience disabling symptoms due to inhaling or ingesting mold spores and mycotoxins. Toxic mold can exist virtually anywhere but is seen a lot in damp or wet environments, such as basements, bathrooms, and other areas where there is or has been moisture and water damage. Exposure to toxic mold can cause a range of symptoms, including respiratory problems, digestive issues, allergic reactions, and even severe neurological issues. The most important thing we can do to help our body heal is to altogether avoid exposure to molds that are toxic. That said, I know from personal experience that avoiding toxic mold and finding a safe place to live, study or work can take time, so limiting our exposure as best as we can is important. That can mean sleeping outdoors, establishing a safe room, working remotely/studying, or spending as much time in clean air as possible. Every step taken to reduce exposure is vital until you can completely remove yourself from a sick building. To learn more about toxic mold and its effect on health, please click here.
Overall Supportive Properties
-Now, on to Reishi mushrooms. This potent bracket fungus contains a variety of compounds that have medicinal properties, including triterpenes, polysaccharides, and proteins. These compounds display anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and immune-boosting effects, which may help to protect the body against the harmful effects caused by toxic mold exposure. Reishi mushrooms have also been shown to have neuroprotective effects, which may be due to their ability to reduce oxidative stress and improve blood flow to the brain.
“Ganoderma lucidum is a famous mushroom because of its therapeutic efficacy. It is the one out of all therapeutic mushrooms, which is examined by many researchers. Ganoderma lucidum has been used as a remedy for many diseases and disorders for 5000 years. The mushroom is considered as a major part of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). It is called as Lingzhi and is thought to be “The Mushroom of Immortality” in Korea and China” Source
Ganoderma lucidum possesses different pharmacological effects, including, calming, antiatherosclerotic, anti-inflammatory, analgesic, chemopreventive and anti-aging effect [13, 14]. Radioprotective, cytotoxic, antitumor, antibacterial, sedative, hypolipidemic, antiviral (for HIV), antifibrotic, hepatoprotective and antioxidant activities have also been seen in the mushroom [15, 16]. In the latest studies, Reishi has shown its effectiveness in the treatment of carcinoma, leukemia, diabetes and hepatitis. Source
Inflammation & Antioxidant Effects
-A study found that Reishi mushrooms were effective at reducing the production of pro-inflammatory cytokines in mice exposed to toxic mold. This suggests that Reishi mushrooms may have the ability to reduce inflammation and promote the body’s natural healing response in cases of mold exposure.
-Reishi has potent anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects. As we know, inflammation is a key contributor to many chronic diseases, such as heart disease and cancer, and antioxidants are essential for protecting the body from the damaging effects of free radicals. The compounds in Reishi can help to reduce inflammation and neutralize free radicals, which is an important step to healing after toxic mold exposure.
Autoimmune Encephalomyelitis & Motor Function
-A study published in the journal Planta Medica found that reishi mushroom extract significantly reduced inflammation in the brain of mice with experimental autoimmune encephalomyelitis (EAE), a model of multiple sclerosis. The extract also improved their motor function and reduced the severity of the disease.
-Another study published in the journal Immunology found that reishi mushroom extract reduced inflammation in the brains of mice with Alzheimer’s disease. The extract also improved their cognitive function, as measured by a maze test.
-Preliminary research suggests that Reishi may have potential benefits for hormone health. One study found that Reishi extract may help to regulate the levels of hormones such as estrogen and testosterone in the body. This may help to balance hormone levels and improve symptoms associated with hormonal imbalances, such as irregular periods and hot flashes. Additionally, Reishi is a rich source of polysaccharides, which are complex sugars that have been shown to have immune-boosting and anti-inflammatory effects by supporting the endocrine system and improving overall hormone health.
Erectile Dysfunction & Low Libido
-Toxic model exposure can cause inflammation and decreased blood flow which can lead to erectile dysfunction and low libido. One study found that reishi mushroom extract improved sexual function in men with mild to moderate erectile dysfunction. The study involved 60 men who were given either a placebo or a daily dose of reishi mushroom extract for eight weeks. At the end of the study, the men who took the reishi mushroom extract showed significant improvements in their ability to achieve and maintain an erection, as well as increased libido and satisfaction with their sex life. Another study found that reishi mushroom extract improved sexual behavior in rats. The study involved male rats that were given either a placebo or a daily dose of reishi mushroom extract for seven days. At the end of the study, the rats that took the reishi mushroom extract showed increased sexual activity and reduced sexual fatigue.
Anxiety & Stress
Toxic mold exposure can heighten the stress response and cause imbalances in the brain’s neurotransmitters, leading to anxiety and a constant state of stress. One of the ways that reishi shines is through its effects on the nervous system. Reishi contains compounds known as triterpenes, which have been shown to have a calming effect on the nervous system. In animal studies, triterpenes from reishi have been shown to reduce stress and anxiety-related behaviors, such as reduced grooming and increased exploration.
-Reishi may not be well tolerated by people who are still living or working in a moldy environment due to the body’s existing fungal overload. Some people do really well with it, while others do not.
-Reishi can interact with blood thinners such as warfarin, which can increase the risk of bleeding.
I hope you found this post helpful. Click here to read a list of some of my favorite herbs and their medicinal properties and uses.
Chemical Free Gal – If you enjoyed this post and would like to support me so that I can continue to provide valuable resources and help to people in our community, click here.
Disclaimers: The information provided on ChemicalFreeGal.com is for informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for advice from your physician or other health care professional. The content on this site is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. Any views or opinions written in this blog should not be taken as fact or professional advice.
This post has affiliate links. This means that, at zero cost to you, I may earn an affiliate commission if you click through the link and finalize a purchase.