Reishi & HIV

Red Reishi is used by some HIV and cancer sufferers to give their immune system a boost. Why do naturopaths consider it to be so effective? Well, the polysaccharides found in Red Reishi have been shown to stimulate the maturation of immune cells into macrophages. These are the crucial part of your immune system that destroy pathogens yet leave your healthy cells alone. So Red Reishi helps to boost your immune system if it has become overwhelmed.

Even more remarkably, it has also been shown to reduce immune activity in those with an over-active immune system (i.e. those with autoimmune diseases). So Red Reishi’s overall effect is to restore your immune system to balance and equilibrium.

Often dubbed the “King of Herbs” and called a “supernatural” mushroom or the “lucky fungus” based on translations from other cultures, the reishi mushroom has been a popular health choice for thousands of years. It’s logical that it would be. After all, it has more than 400 bioactive compounds and is known to help improve the skin by eliminating dead surface cells, treat those with chronic fatigue disorders, regulate blood sugars and even help with altitude sickness.

However, the finding that its triterpenoids have the potential to eliminate the likes of cancer, HIV and herpes makes it a coveted alternative medicine option well worth exploring. The North American Journal of Medical Sciences published findings that analyzed these substances after they were isolated from the mushroom’s spores, saying that “Triterpenoids isolated from ganoderma spores showed significantly anti-HIV-1 protease, anti-tumor, and anti-complement activities. Triterpenoids are the main active constituents of ganoderma spores and show various bioactivities for its medicinal use.”

Even the world-renowned Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center is on board with the reishi mushroom’s ability to heal, noting its role as a way for cancer and HIV patients to stimulate their immune system. For example, reishi mushroom raises the T cell levels in HIV patients.

Furthermore, the triterpenoids in the reishi mushroom have been shown to provide a host of other health benefits. They have anti-allergy and anti-inflammatory properties, help reduce cholesterol and also inhibit platelets from forming, which prevents blood clots.

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