We all know mushrooms are having a moment right now. And, they deserve it. September is National Mushroom Month, so let’s learn about these powerful fungi friends and the many positive things they can do for our bodies and brains.
Mushrooms have been used for their medicinal properties for centuries, but many times if you mention mushrooms nowadays, people automatically think of the “magic” variety. The truth is, not all mushrooms have psychoactive properties.
So, what are “functional mushrooms?” The phrase functional mushrooms means that the fungi in question offer possible wellness and health benefits - without the high.
We know that mushrooms can support health and overall wellness, but which ones do what? Let’s take a closer look at three popular mushroom varieties.
Lion’s Mane: Studies have found that lion’s mane “contain two special compounds that can stimulate the growth of brain cells: hericenones and erinacines” (healthline.com). This means that these mushrooms could help protect against dementia and Alzheimer’s. Also, a 2020 study revealed that “people with mild Alzheimer’s disease found that supplementation with 1 gram of lion’s mane mushroom daily for 49 weeks significantly improved cognitive test scores compared with a placebo” (www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov). Lion’s mane is also said to also help with anxiety, depression, may help speed up recovery from nervous system injuries, protect your digestive tract, reduce risks of heart disease and complications from diabetes, reduce inflammation, and there has even been research that it may help fight cancer. Here the products we offer that contain Lion's Mane mushrooms.
Cordyceps: If you watched HBO’s The Last of Us, you may be familiar with this mushroom and how it started a zombie apocalypse. For more on that, check this out. One of the first things that this amazing fungi can support is inflammation (and who doesn’t suffer from that?). “Cordyceps contain a bioactive component called cordycepin. This can help with inflammation related to asthma, rheumatoid arthritis, Parkinson’s disease, hepatitis and more” (health.clevelandclinic.org). Benefits of reduced inflammation can include, lower cholesterol, regulate blood sugar, heart health, and increase in exercise performance. It’s also been referred to as the “Himalayan Viagra” due to its ability to reduce fatigue and boost libido (www.nature.com). It may also help the growth and spread of cancerous tumors. Here are the products we offer with Cordyceps mushrooms.
Reishi: One of the biggest benefits of this mushroom is that it can boost your immune system. One study found that it can help fight infections and cancer (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov). It is also said to boast anti-cancer properties. Like cordyceps, reishi can help reduce fatigue and depression. It can also help blood sugar levels and is thought to be an antioxidant. Here are the products we offer with Reishi mushrooms.
Note: It’s important to remember that mushrooms have many natural effects, so you should check with your doctor if you have health issues, are pregnant or nursing, or are on any medications.