With each phase of life, I like to take a step back and assess what my health needs are now. I’m always curious about how to up the ante on finding ways to feel more energized, because what I need now is a bit different than what I needed in my twenties and thirties. The main things that keep coming up for me and my lovely tribe of (to quote Dr. Christiane Northrop) “ageless goddesses” are: quality sleep, more energy, hormonal balance, less stress, and who doesn’t want supple skin? So, after hearing rave reviews, I started exploring medicinal mushrooms in general and zeroed in on reishi mushrooms.
Amazing. These fungi, native to China, Japan, and Korea are packed with chemicals that fight everything from cancerous tumors and inflammation to viruses, insomnia, and anxiety. Used extensively in Traditional Chinese Medicine for their healing properties, they can now can be found in most health food stores. But why are they so great? They have an adaptogenic quality that helps with maintaining hormone balance. They have polysaccarides (long-chain carbohydrates made up of smaller carbohydrates called monosaccharides typically used by our bodies for energy or to help with cellular structure) that help fight cancer cell development, complex sugars known as beta-glucans, and substances called triterpenes that may have an antihistamine and blood-pressure lowering effect. And, as if that weren’t enough…
They are also known to help with sleep by aiding how fast we are able to actually fall asleep and the quality of our sleep. I have definitely noticed a difference in my own sleep pattern. As with everything I talk about, think of mushrooms as a potential addition to your go-to wellness kit. Sometimes there’s one thing that helps you level up dramatically. More often it’s a mixture of nutrition, supplements, exercise, meditation and any other modality that brings you increased vitality. As you put together what works for you, don’t forget about mushrooms. They may be small but they are oh so mighty!
I take them in capsule form, but there are tinctures, supplements, extracts, powders, and even teas.
For more medical information:
And here’s a great online resource to buy mushroom coffee, teas, and other blends: