Move over Celery juice there’s a new fad sweeping the pseudo medical/scientific world. Reishe mushrooms is the newest health craze. A lot more expensive than juicing celery, reishi mushrooms does have a bit of science to back it up.
The Reishi mushroom is a tough and woody fungus. Both the above ground part of the mushroom as well as the mycelium (filaments connecting a group of mushrooms) are used as medicine to treat ailments that range from fatigue to immune system disorders and even cancer.
There are a lot of promises a simple fungus makes. Its health benefits have been published in prestigious medical journals. In a 2013 published article, titled “Probing Lingzhi or Reishi medicinal mushroom Ganoderma lucidum (higher Basidiomycetes): a bitter mushroom with amazing health benefits.”, the reishi mushroom was found to contain “polysaccharides, dietary fibers, oligosaccharides, triterpenoids, peptides and proteins, alcohols and phenols, mineral elements (such as zinc, copper, iodine, selenium, and iron), vitamins, and amino acids.” These bioactive components can be considered to have therapeutic potential.
Dr Ellenhorn, a Professor of Surgery at Cedars Sinai Medical Center and a founding partner of the Surgery Group of Los Angeles, explains that substances that have therapeutic potential should not be substituted for the standard of care reccoended by your physician. Reiki mushrooms can also be unsafe unsafe for certain patients.
Dr. Ellenhorn advises his patients to not ingest Reishi mushrooms before surgery because they can contribute to a clotting disorder known as thrombocytopenia. Stop using reishi mushroom at least 2 weeks before a scheduled surgery. In addition, he advises all pregnant and breast feeding women to avoid using reishi mushrooms because there simply isn’t enough reliable information about the safety of using them.
Considering that reishi mushroom use comes with these warnings, there are at least 3 scientifically studied benefits to eating these mushrooms: Immune system benefits, prostate health benefits, helping with fatigue/depression. Again Dr Ellenhorn warns, that ingesting Reiki Mushrooms do NOT cure any of the maladies or disease but have a therapeutic effect ONLY.
Dr Ellenhorn adds, “If you are a patient that benefits from an integrative approach to managing disease, reiki mushrooms, taken in small doses for a short duration, is a wonderful holistic therapeutic addition to a well studied standard of care. It is incredibly important to consider that reiki mushrooms can also adversely impact your health, as well.”
In summary unlike Celery Juice, reiki mushrooms can be contraindicated for medical use because of its potential toxicity.