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What Happens When You Eat Reishi Mushrooms

October 31, 2023

While reishi mushrooms have gained attention recently, these fantastic fungi have been used for centuries in traditional medicine for their health-promoting properties. In this article, we dive into the realm of reishi mushrooms, uncovering their nutritional profile, exploring the diverse health benefits they provide and providing you with a nutrition expert’s tips on incorporating these fungi into your diet. Read on to learn more.

What Are Reishi Mushrooms?

Reishi mushrooms, scientifically known as Ganoderma lucidum, have a history that spans centuries and continents. Revered in traditional Chinese medicine as the “mushroom of immortality,” these fungi are renowned for their potential health benefits. These mushrooms belong to the polypore family, characterized by their unique growth on trees and logs. They have a distinct appearance with a reddish-brown cap and a glossy surface.

Reishi Mushroom Nutrition

According to the Department of Agriculture, a 1-teaspoon (3-gram) serving of reishi mushroom powder contains:

  • Calories: 10
  • Carbohydrate: 2g
  • Dietary Fiber: 1g
  • Total Sugar: 0g
  • Added Sugar: 0g
  • Protein: 1g
  • Total Fat: 0g
  • Saturated Fat: 0g
  • Cholesterol: 0mg
  • Sodium: 0mg
  • Iron: 0.18mg
  • Potassium: 69mg

Health Benefits of Reishi Mushrooms

Immune System Support

Rich in bioactive compounds like antioxidants and fiber-rich beta-glucan, these mushrooms may help enhance the body’s immune response by stimulating white blood cell production. A 2019 review in Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology found that reishi mushrooms may support production of immune cells, like B and T cells, that play a crucial role in strengthening your body’s defense mechanisms to fend off infections and illnesses.

However, Kelsey Kunik, RDN, a registered dietitian nutritionist and intuitive eating dietitian at Graciously Nourished, tells EatingWell, “While many laboratory studies have found these effects, more clinical trials need to be done to confirm their immune-supporting effects.”

Natural Mood Booster

According to a 2018 study published in Molecules, reishi mushrooms contain compounds that may calm your nervous system, helping reduce stress and boost relaxation. Read more:

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