Top 3 Benefits Of Chaga Mushrooms
By Jayton Miller
Chaga mushrooms are known for their healing properties in the alternative medicine community. This blog post will discuss 3 benefits that chaga offers, along with how to use it. Let’s dive in...
What Is Chaga:
Chaga, also known as Inonotus obliquus, is a fungus that looks very similar to charcoal. Mostly grown on birch trees, infecting them and living in the trunks of the trees for up to 80 years.
Chaga is seen as a cure all to people who spend time in the alternative medicine world as it has a wide array of bioactive compounds that can be beneficial to the health of many organisms. It originally became popular when northern Europeans and Russians began to use it for its many benefits.
The active components found within the Chaga mushroom include:
Benefits of Chaga Mushrooms:
May Help With Cancer
There has been promising evidence that shows that chaga may have the ability to help with various types of cancers.
In this study, an aqueous extract of chaga mushroom was used to inhibit the proliferation of, or the multiplication of, neurogliocytoma cells (a type of tumor that grows in the nervous system). It is important to note for this study though (as well as most studies on this mushroom) that it was done in vitro, meaning that it was done on cultured cells in a petri dish. More human studies are needed to solidify most of the benefits that are seen with this mushroom, but all of them seem to be promising.
There has been a study on mice for this purpose though that has shown to suppress cancer progression and maintain body temperature (a key in immune health).
May Help With Inflammation
One study showed that chaga extracts were used in mice to help lower inflammation related to colitis stating “Histological examinations indicated that IOAE suppressed edema, mucosal damage, and the loss of crypts induced by DSS. IOAE markedly attenuated DSS-induced iNOS levels and myeloperoxidase accumulation in colon tissues, demonstrating its suppressive effect on infiltration of immune cells. In addition, IOAE significantly inhibited mRNA expression of pro-inflammatory cytokines induced by DSS in colon tissues.”
It was even shown that chaga mushrooms can have a suppressive effect on TNF-a (tumour necrosis factor - alpha), an inflammatory cytokine that is usually related to pathologic diseases.
Read More: 14 Tips To Eliminate Inflammation Naturally
Chaga Mushroom May Help With High Blood Sugar Levels
Chaga mushroom, along with its possible anti-cancer and anti-inflammatory actions, has been shown to potentially be useful for blood sugar regulation as well.
This mice study showed that when in combination with chromium, chaga extract was able to effectively improve the effects of streptococcus induced type 2 diabetes mellitus.
Another mice study showed that when the mice were induced with alloxan and given type 2 diabetes chaga was able to ameliorate hyperglycemic states and help with anti lipid peroxidation (which in turn can help with glucose metabolism).
Overall, in all of the things we talked about there needs to be sufficient human studies done to come to a conclusion about the actual effects chaga has on human health, but nonetheless, chaga seems to have some very interesting effects both in vitro and in mice, and has reason to be studied further in the future.
Read More: 10 Ways To Lower Blood Sugar Naturally
How To Use Chaga Mushroom:
Chaga is used mostly as a powder in the 500-1000 mg range. There is no hard data to help with recommended dosing in studies so experimenting with this range to see benefits might be useful.
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Chaga is a fungus that grows on birch trees, and the health benefits of chaga are largely unknown. However, some studies have shown that it may help with cancer, inflammation, or blood sugar levels in mice. If you’re looking for other ways to improve your health naturally check out the rest of our blog, and if you have any questions email in or join our community groups on facebook!