Boosting Your Total Body Health: The Incredible Benefits of Mushroom Supplements
Is all of the buzz surrounding mushroom supplements just the sign of another passing fad?
It seems not, considering the fact that people have been using mushrooms for medicinal purposes for thousands of years. While people have known a number of the benefits of fungi for a long time, Western markets are just starting to appreciate their value and science is helping to back up their efficacy.
We’re going to take a close look at mushroom supplements in this article, giving you some idea as to what they can do and which products you should consider to start out.
Understanding Mushroom Supplements
It might be hard to imagine that some tiny supplements could actually lead to things like memory growth, tumor growth prevention, muscle recovery, increased energy, and almost anything else you can imagine.
While there needs to be a lot more scientific research to verify every single claim that comes out about mushroom supplements, there’s every indication to suggest that there are a whole host of benefits that can come from various mushroom treatments.
Before you rule these claims out completely, let’s think a little bit about mushrooms and fungi in general. A better idea of how complex and intelligent mushrooms are might help convince you of their power.
What’s So Great about Mushrooms?
You might be interested to know that humans are more connected to fungi genetically than any other kingdom. That means that the connection between animals and fungi is closer than that of animals and plants, for example.
Mushrooms and most other fungi support and are supported by something called mycelium. Mycelium is a network of fungal matter that branches out throughout the soil of the earth, holding the dirt together, transferring nutrients between fungus and plants, and generally contributing to the harmony of the planet.
It’s the nature of mycelium and fungi, in general, to spread in search of nutrients. Interestingly, that spread is often conducted in a sort of ingenious way.
For example, a slime-mold was placed in the center of a map of Tokyo, with points placed at all of the major subway systems. As the mold’s network spread across the map, it actually charted out a more effective way to arrange the subway routes than humans had previously done.
Since life has been present on earth, in the face of five major extinction events (not counting the one we’re currently experiencing), fungi and mushrooms have persisted in incredibly complex ways.
No to mention, there are innumerable species of mushrooms and fungi, many of which we may have yet to discover. The fortunate thing about these beautiful and powerful organisms is that we don’t have to fully understand their complex lives to enjoy the nutritional benefits that they provide.
Great Supplements To Explore
As you start to appreciate and explore different mushroom supplements, it’s important to try and document your experiences with them in some way. In other words, try to be aware of the effects that you’re trying to induce through the supplements and write down how you feel.
The odds are that you will experience some benefit or another, and you can refer back to your notes when you start seeing benefits to try and understand which other supplements might work for you in the future.
With that in mind, let’s take a look at some of the most common mushrooms that might be able to produce some different benefits for you.
1. Lion’s Mane
Lion’s mane is one of the most popular mushroom supplements on the market right now, and it’s for good reason because there are a number of excellent benefits that come from it.
The potential effects operate primarily on a person’s mental state, improving brain function for the short as well as the long term. Some people state that there are benefits to their depression and anxiety in the short term, but there’s also evidence to show that lion’s mane could stop the development of diseases like Alzheimer’s.
Some of the active ingredients in lion’s mane are beta-glucans, anti-oxidants, and a whole lot more. You can incorporate lion’s mane powder into almost any meal and, over time, you’ll start to feel a little clearer and brighter throughout the day.
2. Reishi Mushroom
The reishi mushroom originates in tropical areas of Asia and is an important component of traditional Chinese medicine.
These mushrooms can be purchased in powder form or in a number of forms. They’re also packed with benefits to different areas of human health.
First and foremost, reishi is known to benefit the immune system. White blood cell production is increased, leading to enhanced efficacy in getting rid of viruses and various illnesses.
There’s also some evidence to suggest that reishi mushrooms can aid in the killing of cancer cells. In fact, there are a number of different forms of cancer that may be improved by reishi supplements.
As with a number of mushroom supplements, reishi is also known to benefit the mood of individuals with anxiety and depression. The same goes for people experiencing fatigue, aches, and pains.
3. Shiitake Mushroom
Shiitake mushrooms are one of the most common edible mushrooms that are used for a number of medicinal benefits. These mushrooms are used to benefit the immune system, treat the cold and flu, and benefit in the treatment of HIV.
There are also individuals who take shiitake mushrooms for atherosclerosis, aging, cancer, herpes, cholesterol, indigestion, and more.
4. Cordyceps Sinensis
This mushroom works, again, to support immune system function, boost energy, reduce cholesterol, benefit respiratory illness, fight tumors, and more.
You’ll notice that a lot of the mushrooms on our list have a number of the same benefits.
What’s the deal with the immune system and mushrooms?
How Mushrooms Benefit the Immune System
Mushrooms are generally very high in the compounds of polysaccharides and terpenes. These compounds are effective at stimulating the immune system and giving it the fuel it needs to fight off infections and viruses.
Many of the compounds in mushrooms contribute to something called immunomodulation, which is the practice of taking supplements and making changes to your diet.
How to Incorporate Supplements Into Your Diet
Let’s talk a little bit about how to incorporate supplements into your diet so that you’re getting the most impact possible. If you’re not careful about how you’re treating your body when you start using supplements, you might not get much of a result.
There are a number of things that you should be doing in the first place that serve as the bedrock of your dietary change, allowing you to fully reap the benefits of any supplements you might take.
Your Diet Should be Well-Rounded and Consistent
The first thing to note is that you should be eating a healthy diet that’s rich in a variety of fruits, vegetables, grains, seeds, nuts, and meat if you’re a carnivore. If you’re a vegetarian or vegan, it’s important that you’re getting a good source of complete proteins, or that you’re eating different proteins that work together to create a combination of the 9 essential amino acids.
This is a dietary step that’s difficult for a lot of people, and it can take some time to establish the habit of eating these things.
It’s important to establish a well-rounded and nutritious diet because that intake sets a basis for your body to work off of. When we pump ourselves with a variety of inconsistent and unhealthy foods, our blood sugar is constantly spiking, or mood is thrown in different directions, and our bodies are working harder just to maintain homeostasis.
Over time, a good diet will put you in a better position to actually receive the benefits of the mushroom supplement and experience them directly. It might be difficult to know when something positive is happening as a result of the supplement if you don’t have a consistent physical and mental bedrock to work off of.
Give Yourself Some Time to Experience Effects
We’ve all been guilty of buying a product off the shelf or online, using it for two days straight, then tucking it into a cupboard to use the next day and entirely forgetting about it.
That can happen with dietary supplements and aids, self-care products, foods, and pretty much everything else.
The thing is that we’re supposed to use these products intentionally, as though they were a medicine prescribed to us. It takes a little time for a lot of medications to start working their magic, and you have to use them consistently to ever get to that point.
So, be sure to use your supplements every day, at the very least, for two or three weeks. If you can manage to do this on top of a great diet, you’ll be in a much better position to receive the benefits of mushroom supplements.
Journal Your First Few Weeks
Further, you should try and write a brief journal entry once or twice per day as you start to incorporate supplements into your diet. These entries don’t have to divulge into how you’re feeling about your entire life if you don’t want them to, but you should give a few sentences about how you feel in your body and mind generally.
You can even do a short comparison between your experience that day and the day before.
The shifts we experience as the result of supplements are very real, but they may take some time to generate. Each day could bring an ever-so-slight shift in mood or health, and we might not notice those shifts immediately.
Having a log of that gradual change will reinforce the fact that you’re experiencing something. After a few weeks, comparing the way you felt on the first day to the way you feel on the 21st day might be kind of shocking.
You’ll find that there’s a stark difference in a number of metrics that you’re using to judge how you feel.
You might be thinking “if these supplements are so effective, why should I have to look so closely at whether or not they’re working?” It’s a matter of time and belief that has to be aided by the journaling.
If you were to take supplements (of any kind) for an entire year, you would surely notice the difference toward the end of that time. The trick to getting into the habit of using any particular supplement, though, is that we all tend to lose motivation if we don’t see the results.
Having a log to reference will reinforce the fact that things are working and incentivize you to continue using these supplements for the long-haul.
Add Some Exercise
The combination of an improved diet and mushroom supplements will certain brighten your body and mind, giving you a little more energy, resilience, and an improved mood.
Working on food online, though, isn’t always the best idea. To really top things off and start feeling as great as possible, do your self a favor and start incorporating exercise into your life.
The great thing about exercise that many people don’t appreciate is that you don’t have to get out there and break a sweat every time you do it. You simply need to have an accelerated heart rate for a period of more than 10 or 20 minutes.
Going for a casual walk around the park is absolutely enough to meet those requirements. That light of exercise will still produce endorphins, get your muscles and joints lubricated, and strengthen your body’s immune and regulatory systems.
If you operate with exercise, great food, and some of the best supplements around, you’ll find that you’re feeling like an entirely different person. When you break this process of self-improvement down into simple chunks, it becomes a whole lot easier.
Need Some Great Supplements?
Finding the best mushroom supplements can be difficult to do. We’re here to help you on that front, though, as well as put you in touch with almost any other supplement you could want.
Explore our site to peruse great supplement products that will have you feeling fantastic.