Updated: Feb 14
Although mushrooms have been used since the beginning of time as medical treatments, they only recently are being widely recognized for their benefits. It’s no secret that regularly taking mushroom extracts, Reishi mushroom for example, can have a positive impact on our mental and physical health.
In fact, as stated by WebMD, “the Reishi mushroom has been used to help enhance the immune system, reduce stress, improve sleep, and lessen fatigue. People also take Reishi mushrooms for health conditions such as high blood pressure and high cholesterol."
You see, Reishi mushrooms contain important compounds called Triterpenes, also known as Triterpenoids. It is believed that this component is what gives Reishi mushrooms the added health benefits they are known for.
We’ve done the research, so you don’t have to! Here is a rundown of what Triterpenes are as well as their proven health benefits.
What are Triterpenes?
In short, Triterpenes are chemical compounds known for carrying a plethora of mental and physical health benefits. They are primarily found in plants and are especially prominent in various species of mushrooms. These chemical compounds are mostly found on the outside of plants, including bark, fruit peels, and even stems.
In a student published study on Science Direct, it is stated that “Pharmacological screening of lupenone [a type of Triterpene] revealed various pharmacological activities including anti-inflammatory, anti-virus, anti-diabetes, anti-cancer, improving Chagas disease without major toxicity.” These are the listed benefits for just one type of Triterpene!
Impressively, “Reishi is the only known source of a group of triterpenes” (USPharmacist). This makes this particular mushroom a powerhouse when it comes to health benefits! Scientists have discovered ways to harness the power of Reishi by placing it in capsule forms for easy consumption.
Experience the benefits offered by the Reishi mushroom! You can start by checking out these Reishi Extract Capsules through Zenspora.
When we think about inflammation, we often think about swollen joints or even an infected wound becoming enlarged. As it turns out, inflammation in the body can present itself in many ways. Inflammation in the stomach can cause nausea and even vomiting, while an injured knee can become swollen and sore.
Conditions such as Arthritis and even Lupus, although they are two very different ailments, can create great amounts of inflammation throughout the body. Triterpenes, found within Reishi, are known for reducing various types of inflammation throughout the body.
We all know what a virus is. They’re those submicroscopic lifeforms that sneak into our systems, infiltrate our cells, and make us sick. In cases of a cold, you may only find yourself sick for three days to a week. However, more intense viruses can leave you bedridden or worse.
Viruses such as the Flu (Influenza), common cold, and many others in the news today are known for their nasty side effects. Triterpenes can boost your immune system and set you up for success if you ever contract one of these distasteful viruses.
Some of the leading causes of type #2 diabetes include leading an inactive lifestyle and being overweight. As you probably already know, type #1 diabetes is a term reserved for those who inherited the diabetic condition from one or both parents.
At this point, you may be wondering what Triterpenes have to do with diabetes. Well, as reported by a study published on NCBI, “Many experiments have shown that these compounds have several antidiabetic mechanisms. They can inhibit enzymes involved in glucose metabolism, prevent the development of insulin resistance and normalize plasma glucose and insulin levels.”
Preventing the body from developing insulin resistance is highly effective in reducing the chances of the person developing diabetes. Although it isn’t an overall fix for the condition, it certainly helps as a preventative!
“Cancer is among the leading causes of death worldwide. In 2018, there were 18.1 million new cases and 9.5 million cancer-related deaths worldwide” (National Cancer Institute). It is well known that a diagnosis can often feel like a death sentence depending on the phase and type of cancer.
Triterpenes are known for being anti-cancer. However, like their anti-diabetes benefits, they are nowhere near being an overall cure. Instead, they can be taken regularly as an extra measure to try and prevent cancer.
A Pubmed study discusses the anti-cancer components of triterpenes. In short, this study discusses the triterpenes’ ability to regulate “cancer-related signaling pathways” and processes.” Furthermore, it is stated that triterpenes contribute to the prevention of “cell death, which are uncontrolled in malignant tumors.”
“Triterpenes also affected the humoral response causing auto-antibody production inhibition” (NCBI). That is, Triterpenes have a positive impact on the body’s production of autoantibodies that help us fight off autoimmune disorder side effects.
Mushrooms such as Reishi promote a healthy immune system. By taking this triterpenoid-dense mushroom supplement each day, you can up your chances of fighting off unwanted ailments. In fact, many people testify that taking a mushroom extract is one of the reasons they have been able to avoid seasonal illnesses.
Although Triterpenes can bring undeniable benefits to the body, they are far from being considered a cure for major diseases and conditions. In many ways, the Triterpenes found in Reishi can prevent ailments and provide overall benefits. These positives can, according to many, significantly improve quality of life.
Mushrooms have been used for thousands of years for their medicinal qualities. From food to medicines, even our ancestors recognized the special benefits of mushrooms and utilized them to their fullest potential.
Even after so many millennia of being consumed, mushrooms still pose some great mysteries that have us stumped. Today, scientists are working diligently to uncover further revelations about how mushrooms, including the rare Reishi, can benefit humankind.
For more information about the benefits of Triterpenes and the many health perks of consuming Reishi, we invite you to follow the Zenspora Blog. Here, we are dedicated to keeping you updated on anything and everything that has to do with the benefits of functional mushroom extracts.