· By Richard Gray
Boost Your Immunity: The Best Mushroom Supplements for an Improved Immune System
Are you looking for the best mushroom supplements to power up your immune system and supercharge your health?
If so, then look no further than this comprehensive list of the top six functional mushrooms that have been scientifically proven to provide incredible benefits.
Medicinal mushrooms have been used in Eastern medicine for centuries., and their benefits have been extensively researched in recent years.
They contain a variety of compounds that can help regulate the immune system, including beta-glucans, polysaccharides, and triterpenes.
These compounds work together to enhance the immune system's response to infections and other health challenges.
In this blog post, we'll take a closer look at some of the best mushroom supplements for boosting your immune system.
We'll explore the scientifically backed benefits of mushrooms, how to choose the right mushroom product for you, and how to incorporate them into your daily routine.
So, let's get started!
Agaricus blazei mushroom (ABM) is a fungus that originated in Brazil. It now grows in China, Japan, Brazil, and the US. It's used as food and medicine.
This mushroom is abundant in antioxidants, the benefits of Agaricus blazei mushrooms are vast and include improved immunity, reduced inflammation, and anticancer properties. (1)
Using water and ethanol extracts, many in vitro experiments have shown that both the mycelial and fruiting bodies of ABM have immunostimulant and antimutagenic properties. (1)
Fine particles of ABM fruiting body and mycelium, respectively, prepared by mechanical disruption, activate the human complement system via the alternative pathway in human serum, is proof of its activity in enhancing natural immunity in bacterial infections. (2)
Another study strongly suggests that the administration of A. blazei was effective in improving the consequences of Cerebral malaria in mice and may provide novel therapeutic strategies. (3)
When consuming Agaricus Blazei Mushroom Extract Powder it is important to follow directions on product labels for dosage amounts or consult with your healthcare provider before taking any supplements or medications for safety purposes.
According to WebMD, there are a few precautions to consider before consuming this mushroom supplement:
- Pregnancy and breastfeeding: There isn't enough reliable information to know if Agaricus mushroom is safe to use when pregnant or breastfeeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.
- Liver disease: Agaricus mushroom may worsen liver disease. Avoid it if you have liver disease.
- Surgery: Agaricus mushroom might lower blood sugar. This might interfere with blood sugar control during surgery. Stop using it at least 2 weeks before a scheduled surgery.
Agaricus blazei Mushroom Extract Powder is a powerful supplement that can provide numerous health benefits, and it has been scientifically proven to be effective in immune support.
A daily dose of 2,000mg (2g) of this mushroom extract powder helps keep your immune system going strong and supports better health and well-being.
Agaricus blazei extract products usually come in two forms: liquid or powder.
- Agaricus blazei liquid extracts: Often, they have a pungent, earthy flavor that many people are not used to. Its flavor, however, can be easily disguised by incorporating the extract into liquids such as smoothies, juices, or hot drinks. Because it is easier for the body to process, the liquid form is usually advised for persons with weaker digestive systems.
Agaricus blazei powder extracts: Unlike the liquid shots that can be ingested on their own, the powdered extract needs to be diluted in your water, juice, smoothies, soups, or broths. This is just another form of ingesting this powerful supplement.
The Reishi mushroom, also known as Ganoderma lucidum and lingzhi, is a fungus that grows in various hot and humid locations in Asia.
Reishi mushrooms are packed with active compounds, including polysaccharides, triterpenoids, and peptidoglycans. Reishi mushrooms possess potent antioxidants that can help reduce inflammation in the body, providing further immune system support. (4)
One of the most important effects of the reishi mushroom is that it can boost your immune system. (5). While some details are still uncertain, test-tube studies have shown that reishi can affect the genes in white blood cells, which are critical parts of your immune system.
What’s more, these studies have found that some forms of Reishi may alter inflammation pathways in white blood cells. (6)
Another study found that reishi can increase the number of other white blood cells (lymphocytes) in those with colorectal cancer. (7)
Other benefits of Reishi mushroom extract include improved sleep quality, increased energy levels, enhanced mental clarity and focus as well as reduced stress levels.
Consuming reishi mushroom supplements is relatively simple - they come in various forms such as capsules or tinctures that you can take daily according to instructions on the label or your doctor’s advice.
Alternatively, Reishi mushrooms are a superfood that can be incorporated into meals or drinks by using them in teas or powdered form.
A daily dose of 2,000mg (2g) of whole food mushroom powder with a beta-glucans content of 20% provides 400mg of immune-supporting polysaccharides.
This amount may be sufficient to help support the potentiation and balancing of immune functions.
Chaga is a fungus that is commonly found on birch and other trees, the conk of the mushroom (the part you would see attached to the tree) has an irregular shape and looks like burnt charcoal.
The name Chaga comes from its Russian name given to it by the people who it is indigenous in the Kama River Basin near the Ural Mountains. It is also known as black mass, clinker polypore birch kanker polypore, cinder conk, and sterile conk trunk rot of birch.
It grows in cold climates such as Northern Europe, Siberia, Russia, Korea, Northern Canada, and Alaska.
It provides numerous health benefits from lowering cholesterol (8) to an effective anti-inflammatory this wondrous mushroom is a popular choice for many.
The main benefit we are going to highlight is its ability to support our immune function.
Cytokines are the chemical messengers of the immune system. These are proteins that play an important part in the stimulation of white blood cells, which are the immune system’s first line of defense.
Chaga may help regulate the production of cytokines, supporting the immune system by helping cells communicate with one another. This could help fight infections, from minor colds to life-threatening illnesses. (9)
Consuming Chaga mushroom supplements can be done in several ways, including taking capsules or adding powders to smoothies and juices.
If you choose capsules be sure to take them with food so your body absorbs all the nutrients properly; however if you’re taking powders they should be taken on an empty stomach so they’re absorbed more quickly into your bloodstream for maximum benefit.
Adults shouldn’t exceed 2000 mg of chaga per day when taken in powder form.
Of course, it’s best to start with a lower dosage (around 250-500 mg per day) and work your way up, especially if you’re new to adaptogens.
Cordyceps is a genus of parasitic fungi that grows on the larvae of insects.
Traditional Chinese Medicine has used these fungi for centuries to treat fatigue, sickness, kidney disease, and low sex drive.
Supplements and products containing Cordyceps extract have become increasingly popular due to their many health benefits.
More than 400 species of Cordyceps have been discovered, and two have become the focus of health research: Cordyceps sinensis and Cordyceps militarist.
Cordyceps have proven to improve immune health by stimulating cells and specific chemicals in the immune system. It has also been shown to inhibit the growth of many types of human cancer cells, including lung, colon, skin, and liver cancers. (10) (11) (12)
Immunomodulators are substances or compounds that help to control the human immune system. There are a number of compounds present in the Cordyceps that possess immunomodulatory activity.
Two studies show evidence that cordycepin was found to regulate human immune cell functions in vitro. (13) (14) It has also been observed that the antitumor activity of cordycepin is associated with its immunomodulatory effects. (15)
Consuming Cordyceps Sinensis Supplements can be done in various ways, such as through capsules or tablets taken orally, or blended into drinks like smoothies and juices.
It is suggested to dissolve powders in hot water prior to ingestion for enhanced uptake by the body's cells. Additionally, pre-made supplements may contain both mushroom extracts and other beneficial ingredients such as herbs, vitamins, and minerals; hence it is important to read labels carefully when selecting these products so you know precisely what you are getting.
A moderate dose of 2g (2000mg) is the amount experts recommend for daily use, though some suggest doubling up for the first two weeks to allow your body to establish its beneficial profile.
One of the most popular mushroom supplements for immune system support is Lion’s Mane. This unique mushroom, also known as Hericium erinaceus, has been used in traditional Chinese medicine for centuries to treat various ailments.
It contains beta-glucans and polysaccharides, which can enhance the immune system's response to infections and diseases.
Animal research shows that lion’s mane mushroom can boost immunity by increasing the activity of the intestinal immune system, which protects the body from pathogens that enter the gut through the mouth or nose. (16)
Lion’s mane mushrooms have been shown to have immune-boosting effects in rodents, but much more research is needed.
In addition to its immune-boosting properties, Lion’s Mane is also known to speed recovery from nervous system injuries, reduce the risk of heart disease and protect against dementia. (17)
This makes Lion’s Mane a great supplement for cognitive function, memory enhancement, and overall brain health.
The recommended daily dosage is 250mg to 750mg. It is recommended to mix one scoop of lion’s mane powdered mix into your tea or coffee, once a day for a two-week period. Be aware of how you feel after two weeks, and you can always increase your dosage to one-two scoop per day.
The maitake mushroom, also known as the Gifola frondosa, has a robust flavor and a pleasant, earthy scent.
The name "hen-of-the-woods" refers to its unusual form. Its most common name, maitake, literally translates to "dancing mushroom," though it also goes by the names "sheep head" and "lord of the mushrooms."
Maitake mushroom is rich in bioactive polysaccharides, especially D-fraction, MD-fraction, and SX-fraction. These protein polysaccharides have well-documented immune-protecting and antitumor properties.
Along with supporting heart health, beta-glucan can help improve your immune system.
D-fraction in maitake mushrooms has a strong effect on the immune system. It boosts the production of lymphokines (protein mediators) and interleukins (secreted proteins) that improve your immune response. (18)
It is said to be noted that since maitake may alter your blood sugar levels, it's important to speak with your doctor about any diabetes treatment you may follow.
The recommended daily dose of Maitake is 2,000mg (2g) or about one teaspoonful of whole-food mushroom powder. At that Maitake dosage, a product with a beta-glucans content of 20% will provide 400mg of immune-supporting polysaccharides.
What is the best mushroom supplement for immunity?
The active compounds in Agaricus blazei mushroom extract powder, such as beta-glucans and polysaccharides, have been proven to enhance the body's immune system response.
It has also been shown to reduce inflammation and improve overall health.
Agaricus blazei mushroom extract powder can be taken daily to help maintain a strong immune system and keep your body healthy.
While mushroom supplements are generally considered safe, it's always a good idea to consult with your healthcare provider before taking multiple types of mushroom supplements at once.
Some people may have allergies or sensitivities to certain types of mushrooms, and taking multiple supplements simultaneously may increase the risk of adverse reactions.
Additionally, some types of mushrooms may have overlapping effects on the body, and taking multiple supplements at once may lead to excessive immune system stimulation or other unwanted effects.
It's important to take mushroom supplements in moderation and follow the recommended dosage instructions on the label.
No, not all mushroom supplements for immune system support are equal in terms of quality. The quality of a mushroom supplement can vary based on several factors, including the type of mushroom used, the part of the mushroom used, the processing methods used, and the quality of the raw materials.
In summary, when seeking a mushroom supplement to bolster your immunity, there are numerous options to consider.
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