The world of medicinal mushrooms is wide. It grows more comprehensive with each passing day. From Colorado’s groundbreaking legislation with the Natural Medicine Health Act to the daily discovery of new fungi species, the Western world is opening its eyes to mushrooms.
Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and Eastern medicine have incorporated medicinal mushrooms for centuries. The use of mushroom tinctures in Japan, especially, is ancient. Mushroom supplements are growing in popularity thanks to Western medicine’s new use of mushrooms in studies. For example, researchers created synthetic psilocybin and found that a 25-milligram dose decreased severe depression symptoms in adults.
Functional mushrooms go by a few names, like adaptogen mushrooms or nootropics. A nootropic stack can include more than just mushrooms because nootropics are substances or herbs that enhance mental health.
Different mushrooms target different areas of the body and mind. One of the most common questions is, “Can you take multiple mushroom supplements at once?” You can and should! When combined or “stacked,” mushrooms work collaboratively on your body and mind. The right mushroom stack for you is about what you seek.
Some mushrooms are all about brain function. Some regulate your nervous system. Others nourish and replenish your immune system. All of these varieties are about restoration and regeneration.
A blended supplement strategy is a go-to way to consume functional mushrooms, and many brands make multi-mushroom products. The combinations are, honestly, endless. I didn’t want to miss out on any benefits, so I was looking for the most mushrooms in a product I felt good taking every day.
Naturealm’s Sacred 7 Mushroom Extract Powder Capsules are my go-to, one-stop supplement because they pack seven powerful mushrooms in one capsule: Chaga, Cordyceps, Lion’s Mane, Maitake, Reishi, Shiitake, and Turkey Tail. The mushrooms’ adaptogenic, longevity-promoting compounds are preserved because Naturealm uses only 100% whole organic fruiting bodies.
So many supplement companies in the U.S. use mycelium-on-grain, attaching grains to mycelium and creating an impure product from that. It’s just as good as having corn with a dose of mushrooms! The mushroom’s fruiting body is where the potent bioactive compounds are, like polysaccharides. Mycelium benefits us, but not as much as the fruiting bodies.
Knowing what you’re putting into your body is essential, no matter the stack you choose. Here’s a brief explainer of the most common functional shrooms. The folks at Naturealm gave us a quick explainer.
Chaga mushrooms grow on the bark of Birch trees in cold climates. Per studies in the National Library of Medicine, Chaga is a friend to the immune system and promotes immune function. Rich in antioxidants, Chaga also boosts immunity, fights inflammation, and lowers cholesterol. It may benefit skin tone and texture based on its triterpenes, betulinic acid, melanin, and other unique compounds.
Cordyceps mushrooms are traditionally grown at high altitudes. Another “all-healer” variety, research shows that cordyceps improve energy levels, stamina, and libido by boosting ATP production. They also help regulate sleeping patterns, are cognition-enhancers, and aid with asthma, per studies in the National Library of Medicine. They also carry beta-glucan polysaccharides, known for their immune system-based benefits.
A champion of nerve and brain health, Lion’s Mane mushrooms contain triterpenes, hericenone, and erinacine. Both affect mental clarity, nerve growth factor, and immune support. Research studies found that it may protect against dementia and reduce mild anxiety symptoms. Studies also prove its gastroprotective properties, especially regarding ulcers, stomach cancers, IBS, and menstrual pain.
Also known as hen-of-the-woods, maitake mushrooms are a popular culinary superfood and part of the Sacred 7 blend. Maitake mushrooms also contain polysaccharides that can reduce bad cholesterol (LDL) without affecting good cholesterol (HDL) levels. A practical solution in diabetes management, maitake is also proven to lower blood sugar levels.
Reishi is consistently used in dietary supplements and extract powders of medicinal mushrooms thanks to its health benefits and neuroprotective properties. Research links Reishi mushrooms to white blood cell production, which helps fight infection. In addition to immune function and cognitive performance, Reishi mushrooms support gut health. A 2017 study even found evidence that Reishi suppresses breast cancer cell growth.
A deliciously gourmet variety, Shiitake is one of the best mushrooms attributed to longevity through research. Like Reishi, it boosts white blood cell production and high-quality immune function. Similar to Maitake, Shiitake mushrooms support healthy blood glucose levels. It’s also high in Vitamin D2, copper, and anti-inflammatory properties.
Turkey Tail mushrooms grow on stumps and decomposing wood and turn decay into medicinal gold. High in antioxidants and loaded with prebiotics to support gut health, Turkey Tail is even linked in various studies to helping specific cancer treatments. It’s a powerful wellness tonic in traditional medicine.
I’ve experienced a noticable difference in my energy levels, especially when it comes to feeling sluggish. I don’t have the midday crash, and my period cramps during menstruation have significantly decreased. Now, I don’t go anywhere without my Sacred 7. I even took it to Europe on a 14-day trip!
We understand a fraction of the natural, life-changing power mushrooms hold. The best time to incorporate functional mushrooms in your life was yesterday. The next best time is now. Whatever stack you choose, you can’t go wrong when it comes to incorporating mushrooms into your routine.