Mushrooms have long been recognized in Eastern civilizations for their medicinal and healing properties.
From run of the mill ailments like high blood pressure and high cholesterol to more severe illnesses like cancer, medicinal mushrooms have proven that they have a place in your overall treatment plan, whether used on their own or in conjunction with other therapies.
Of all the different kinds of these medicinal mushrooms, only a few species also offer nootropic benefits. To be considered nootropic, the substance must be natural or synthetic and must improve mental capabilities.
The Chaga mushroom is known for its antiviral properties, specifically its ability to inhibit cancer cell growth, as an anti-inflammatory, hepatic benefits, and ability to control blood sugar levels. It’s been shown to boost the production of acetylcholine which improves learning and memory as well as fighting off free radicals and the damage they cause.
Cordyceps has been believed to help relieve symptoms of diabetes, lower effects of aging due to oxidative stress, and the slowing of tumor growth. It also boosts the production of ATP, an important energy molecule, that can reduce fatigue and improve athletic performance.
Several studies have found that this fungus can help reduce the cellular death of neurons located in the hippocampus area of the brain. The hippocampus is also the area of the brain that dementia most affects.
This mushroom gets its name from its physical resemblance to that of a lion’s mane. It contains hericenones and erinacines which are compounds that stimulate new brain cells to grow.
Several studies have shown promise in its ability to protect against Alzheimer’s disease in animals and improve mental cognition in humans.
One major benefit of the Reishi mushroom is its effect on mental health, especially depression. It’s also been shown to improve cognitive function in one study group after eight weeks. Yet another study has shown that Reishi can help memory and retention.
The Tremella mushroom is known for its anti-inflammatory effects, its reduction in the effects of aging, and its ability to lower cholesterol. This fungus appears to have Nerve Growth Factor which could be of assistance in neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s. It also shows promise in its ability to improve short term memory loss.
When consuming medicinal mushrooms, make sure you are getting one that offers some nootropic benefits as well. Consuming these in supplement form is a great way to reap the benefits and get a head start on protecting and taking care of your most important organ.