Red reishi mushroom or ganoderma lucidum is a fungus and one of the medicinal mushrooms that is known for its healing properties. The Chinese called it lingzhi which means spiritual plant. Reishi or lingzhi mushrooms are normally found attached to decayed logs and stumps and they are kidney shaped with reddish brown tops. The parts of the mushroom that are used as medicine are the caps or tops.
Nearly 4000 years ago, the Chinese and Japanese have already used ganoderma lucidum as folk medicine and tonic in the treatment of ailments such as asthma, arthritis, cancer, heart disease, high blood pressure and liver diseases.
Studies found that reishi mushrooms contain beta-glucan polysaccharides, sterols and triterpenes. Other constituents present in reishi include adenosine, coumarins, volatile oil, R S-ganoderma and ganasterone. It also contains ascorbic acid, amino acids and riboflavin. Reishi has shown to produce analgesic, anti-histamine, anti-inflammatory, antihepatoxic and anti tumor effects.
Scientists discovered that reishi extract was able to stimulate the immune system and fight bacteria, virus such as herpes and cancer cells. They also learned that reishi improved blood circulation and reduced blood pressure level.
Chinese medical practitioners believe that taking reishi extract regularly can restore a person's health and promotes health and longevity as it helps the organs in the body to function normally. Based on numerous studies done by Chinese and Japanese scientists are researchers, reishi may also help as a remedy for the following conditions and illness:
Red reishi are sold whole and dried, reishi tea bags and also as reishi powder. You can also buy reishi coffee which is a combination of ganoderma lucidum powder and coffee powder. Reishi extract is available in capsules, liquid extract and tincture. To make reishi tea, what you need is about 1 to 8 grams of dried mushroom for every cup.