Mushroom tea is considered a traditional medicine that has been long used in ancient Chinese herbalism for treating various illnesses. The use of mushroom tea for its medicinal value dates back many centuries ago throughout many cultures.
In modern culture, mushrooms are a popular ingredient in oriental cuisines. But, have you ever thought you could use a fungus as a beverage that can benefit your health? Well, you can!
What Exactly is a Mushroom?
A mushroom is a species of fungi. It is in a fruit form that grows from spores produced through pores or gills of a fungus. For further germination, the wind helps to spread the spores from the fungus.
Mushrooms can either be edible or poisonous (non-edible). Be careful when harvesting fresh mushrooms to avoid picking the toxic ones, when in doubt, leave it!
The non-edible mushrooms stem from a variety of different species throughout the world. Most of the poisonous species have a close resemblance to the edible types which requires great discretion.
Mushroom Tea Types and Health Benefits
Different kinds of mushrooms have different nutritional and medicinal values. Generally, mushrooms have a high amount of various minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants. Some of the minerals include potassium, zinc, copper, magnesium.
The vitamins include B vitamins such as B1, B2, B3, B-5, and B-9. Mushrooms are also rich in fiber and low in fat and calories.
The following are the best types of medicinal mushrooms:
Chaga Mushroom Tea
Chaga mushroom tea is popular in the Eastern regions such as Asia for its potent in medicinal value. Other cultures are starting to embrace the tea, and is also arousing interest in the Western world.
You can find Chaga mushroom (Inonotus obliquus) growing on the back of a birch tree. The outer part of the fungus is deep black due to sun exposure, while the inside part maintains its bright orange hue.
Once dried, Chaga mushroom is made into powder. You can either use it as a tea, tincture or in a capsule form. The traditional way of taking Chaga mushroom is by brewing tea from its grounded powder.
Different cultures have different names for Chaga mushroom. Some of the names are:
- Black mass
- Birch canker polypore
- Clinker polypore
- Conk rot
- Cinder conk
Another most intriguing name of Chaga mushroom is “Kreftkjuke”. It is a Norwegian name meaning “cancer fungus” which brings us to the Chaga mushroom’s health benefits:
Chaga Mushroom Tea Health Benefits
Chaga mushroom is packed with a variety of health benefits. Many testimonials of using chaga tout its success in reducing acid reflux.
Some of the health benefits are:
Providing essential nutrients
Fiber, vitamins, and minerals, including vitamin B-complex, vitamin D, calcium, potassium, magnesium, manganese.
Due to its high content in pigment melanin and antioxidant activities, Chaga mushroom tea may slow down the skin aging process. By using Chaga mushroom tea, one just may be able to maintain or restore their desired youthful look.
Due to its high levels of antioxidants, Chaga can prevent cancer or inhibit disease cell growth. One specific 2018 study concludes that Chaga mushroom can be useful in the treatment of lung cancer specifically. However, Chaga mushroom cancer treatment research is still ongoing to prove its potential against cancer.
Chaga mushroom tea has an anti-diabetic effect due to its molecular makeup of polysaccharides. The profile of these polysaccharides in the Chaga mushroom helps in lowering glucose levels. It can also help to improve the ability of glucose tolerance and hence, lower blood sugar.
Some properties in Chaga mushrooms help in boosting the immune system. Regular use of Chaga mushroom tea can inhibit various diseases through strong immunity.
Cytokine is a property in Chaga mushrooms that can help in controlling severe inflammation such as arthritis inflammation.
However, you may need to consult your nearest herbalist for further advice on using Chaga mushroom tea. Excess use of the tea can cause kidney stones since the mushroom contains oxalates, which can be a harmful nutrient to those with kidney function problems.
How to Make Chaga Mushroom Tea
- Measure 3 teaspoons level size of powdered Chaga mushrooms and pour in your drinking cup. Boil water and measure it into 1 cup / 8 oz.
- Pour 1 cup of boiled water into your drinking cup that contains Chaga mushroom powder.
- Cover for 15 minutes to allow it to steep.
- Increase the ratio if you want to serve more cups of Chaga mushroom tea.
- Drink it while still hot.
Reishi (Ganoderma) Mushroom Tea
Ganoderma lucidum mushroom has a woody texture with a glossy appearance. Its medicinal use dates back 2000 years in the Eastern countries such as China, Japan, and other Eastern regions. Besides the mushroom’s therapeutic value, it has high regard for its power in spiritualism. The Easterners believe that it provides longevity, divine power, and healthy living.
The word “lucidum” in Ganoderma lucidum is a Latin word meaning “shiny” since it has a glossy surface. Other names for Ganoderma lucidum mushroom are lingzhi which is in Chinese and Reishi which is in Japanese.
Ganoderma lucidum mushroom tea is packed with medicinal properties beneficial in treating various diseases. Ganoderma lucidum also contains a compound known as triterpene which helps in relaxation and easing tension.
Reishi (Ganoderma) Mushroom Benefits
- Lowers cholesterol and blood pressure
- Stimulates blood circulation and eases inflammation
- Revives energy, fights off chronic fatigue, and eases insomnia
- Boosts immunity and memory
- Reduces the aging process
- Effective in the suppression of the HIV/AIDS virus due to high immunity level
- Works effectively on bronchitis, asthma, and viral infections such as the flu
- Effective in kidney, liver disorders, and stomach ulcers
- Treats prostate cancer with a combination of other herbs
- Packed with antioxidants
Exercise precaution when using Ganoderma lucidum despite feeling energetic after using it. Even with the excellent side effects of Ganoderma lucidum, overusing the mushroom tea can cause bleeding or clotting disorders.
How to Make Reishi Mushroom Tea
It is essential to know how to make mushroom tea to avoid overdosing. While buying Reishi mushrooms, see that you get a packet containing small broken pieces, however, the quickest way of having your Reishi mushroom tea is by using the powder form.
- Use a half teaspoon of extracted Reishi mushroom powder.
- Place the powder content in your cup.
- Boil some water and pour it into the cup containing Reishi mushroom powder.
- Cover the cup for 5 minutes to let it steep.
- Drink it while still warm.
Magical Mushroom (Psilocybin)
Magical mushrooms, or shrooms, contain a specific medicinal ingredient called psilocybin. Although the shrooms have the potential to provide many health benefits, the FDA has not approved the use of this type of mushroom for medicinal use.
However, using the Magical Mushroom in the right way without abusing it can provide more health benefits than harm.
Taste of Vitality does not endorse the use of Magic (Psilocybin) Mushrooms where their use is deemed illegal. Always use your discretion.
Magical Mushrooms Tea Benefits
The main psychoactive ingredient (psilocybin) in magic mushrooms are known for their hallucinogenic properties. There are over 100 different species of mushrooms of various potencies that contain the compound psilocybin, therefore it is advised to do your research on finding the right type for your needs. Read on below to discover just some of the various reported health benefits that can be obtained from taking these particular mushrooms.
Quit smoking and cessation of other addictions
Rehabilitating alcohol abusers
Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
The findings of research on 9 patients with psilocybin’s tolerability, safety, and effectiveness in obsessive-compulsive disorder using 9 patients, the results were successful. The conclusion was that OCD was acutely reduced with stringent observation after the treatment using psilocybin.
Depression and anxiety in life-threatening cancer patients
A study carried out on some patients with cancer-related depression and anxiety successfully concluded a decline in negative mood after using a high dose of psilocybin. Eighty percent showed a significant depression mood decrease after a six-month carefully follow up.
How to Make Shrooms Tea
The taste of shrooms tea is not pleasant, but you can acquire the taste after a time. For better taste in the interim, you might want to spruce it up with something else like green tea bags or even top it up with honey.
- Wash your freshly picked shrooms. Chop them up into fine pieces.
- Boil 3 cups of water and then reduce the fire for the water to simmer.
- Throw the chopped mushrooms in the simmering water.
- Leave the shrooms to simmer for about 15 minutes.
- Dip in 2 green tea bags towards the end of simmering time while stirring.
- After 15 minutes of simmering the shrooms plus the tea bags, strain the psilocybin tea using a metal strainer.
- Press the shrooms on the sieve to squeeze out the much-needed psilocybin.
- To enjoy your psychedelic mushroom tea, add honey to suit your taste.
Maitake Mushroom Tea
Maitake which is scientifically known as Grifola frondosa derives its name, Maitake from the Japanese language. The name means “dancing mushroom” since it resembles a dancing nymph. Maitake mushroom is an adaptogen that assists in regulating the body’s physical and mental systems. Besides its medicinal value, Maitake mushroom is popular in Asian countries for culinary use.
Health Benefits of Maitake Mushroom Tea
Maitake mushrooms contain high amounts of:
- Amino Acids
- Minerals such as potassium and copper
- Vitamins B and C
Further research and trials are in progress to scientifically prove the Maitake mushroom health benefits. However, the mushroom has excellent support in the Eastern region as being effective in treating various diseases. For that reason, the fungus is gaining popularity in the Western region as well.
Maitake mushroom tea can treat the following health disorders:
The leading cause of polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), which inhibits ovulation is insulin resistance. Using Maitake mushroom tea can induce ovulation by correcting insulin resistance. The mushroom extracts can improve insulin sensitivity and hence induce ovulation.
An extract of Maitake mushroom, D-Fraction produces antitumor effects that can inhibit cancer cell growth. Breast cancer is one of the cancers the mushroom can effectively treat.
Physicians in naturopathy recognize Maitake mushrooms as potent in boosting immunity and supporting the immune system.
Stabilizing blood pressure
Whether blood pressure is low or high, using Maitake mushroom tea can regulate the blood pressure to maintain it.
Maitake mushroom is effective in fighting flu and other viruses. Due to its power in boosting immunity, it can suppress any virus to remission, including the virus in HIV.
Diabetes type 2
Maitake mushroom is effective in treating Diabetes Type 2 by controlling levels of glucose.
If you have low blood sugar or low blood pressure, be sure to consult your health practitioner before using Maitake mushrooms.
How to Make Maitake Mushroom Tea
- If you prefer to use fresh Maitake mushroom, get a chunk of organic mushroom.
- Place the mushrooms in water and bring to boil.
- Lower the heat and let it simmer for 10 minutes.
- Set it off the heat.
- Cover to steep it while cooling.
- If you prefer to add more flavor, you can add 2 teaspoonfuls of green tea before covering to steep.
- Serve it either warm or cold. You can add 3 tablespoons of honey as well to sweeten the tea.
Follow storage instructions on the label of your mushroom packet. You might wonder “how long does shroom tea last”. Well, it’s always best to consume before the expiry day on the packet. You can dry fresh shrooms for longer storage. Either dry in the sun or oven-dry them. Use an airtight container for safe storage and follow the handy tips recommended in our optimal tea storage article.
Our Final Say
Herbal teas are just one of mother nature’s many great gifts that we can turn to for improving our health. Many of the recommended mushroom teas listed in this article have proven benefits for enhanced immunity and cognitive function, and overall general wellbeing.
As always though, be sure to consult with your doctor or primary medical physician prior to taking any of the natural remedies, herbs or general advice given in this article. This information is for educational purposes only. These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.