Chaga is a species of medicinal mushroom which has long been hailed as one of the most profound healing tonic substances on earth. Native to forests in parts of North America, Siberia, Alaska, Canada and Scandinavia, this potent polypore thrives on birch trees. The dark wood-like fungus lives symbiotically with the tree, meaning that the mushroom enriches the host with its nutrients and absorbs its nutrients, which it then converts into forms which are easily digestible by humans. It’s a rare mushroom that is believed to grow naturally on around only one in every 15,000 birch trees.
Chaga is fast gaining a superfood status in the West, partly thanks to its incredible nutritional profile and potential anti-cancer and anti-aging properties.
What is Chaga Mushroom?
Chaga Mushroom (Inonotus Obliquus) is a wild mushroom that grows on Birch trees in very cold environments, including Siberia, Alaska, Scandinavia, northern Canada, and the Baltic region. It grows in places where temperatures are below minus thirty degrees Fahrenheit for between two and three months annually. Chaga Mushrooms found on trees that are at least 25 years old are usually viewed as superior than ones from younger trees.
Chaga Mushroom is usually not cultivated commercially, but harvested in wild regions. It is a Basidiomycetes Mushroom which is believed to be nutritionally superior to the other 150 Basidiomycetes mushroom species in existence.
The Chaga mushroom is a very hard mushroom and has the greatest nutrition density of all tree growths. It has been used to promote human health for thousands of years in Japan, China, Korea, Siberia, Russia, and Eastern Europe generally. In China, Chaga is referred to as “The King of Plants”.
Chaga Mushroom supplements are available, but are not yet very well-known in some Western countries. However, Chaga has recently begun to be studied in the field of conventional Western medicine.
Chaga, also known as inonotus obliquus, boasts a broad spectrum of healing properties which have been harnessed for thousands of years.
In Ancient China, chaga is listed in Shen Nong’s classic herbalist text, The Shen Nong Ben Cao Jing, as a superior class herb and a precious gift of nature. Traditional Chinese Medicine practitioners have been prescribing it for thousands of years to promote the flow of life energy (chi), preserve youth and maintain a healthy immune system.
In Russia, the first recorded use dates back to the 12th century, when Grand Duke Vladimir Monomakh reported that chaga, known then as the birch tree fungus, played a vital role in the healing of his lip tumors. While the Khanty people in West Siberia used chaga to support the immune system, get rid of parasites and to make an anti-bacterial ‘soap water’ cleanser.
Chaga Mushroom Nutritional Profile
Chaga is an extremely nutrient-dense mushroom, as it contains over 215 nutritional compounds including vital trace vitamins, polysaccharides, triterpenes, flavonoids, beta glucans, melanin, phytochemicals and enzymes. It’s rich in wild-source minerals including manganese, potassium, zinc, iron, calcium and copper.
This prized polypore also contains a very high amount of antioxidants; in fact, the ORAC scale — which is the official scale used to measure the presence of antioxidants in natural substances — states that chaga has the highest antioxidant levels of any substance. Depending on how it is grown and harvested, chaga can contain over four times the amount of antioxidants that are present in raw cacao, and twice as many as found in goji berries.
Chaga contains the highest amount of superoxide dismutase (SOD) of any herb, mushroom or food known to man. This powerful antioxidant has been scientifically proven to reduce cell oxidation by preventing single oxygen free radical damage. SOD prevents tissue damage and also produces powerful anti-aging effects (and can even slow down the onset of wrinkles) by neutralizing free radicals in the body. SOD is produced naturally by the body but levels start to rapidly decrease by around the age of 25, which is why it’s so important to replenish them with the help of natural SOD-rich supplements. Chaga contains 25-50 more times the natural SOD levels found in wild blueberries and seaweed, and over five times the amount present in reishi mushrooms.
Chaga is also an adaptogen, which means it is able to adapt to environmental factors to help the body to better deal with anxiety and stress.
Chaga Mushroom Health Benefits
- Immune-Boosting: Polysaccharides help to strengthen the immune system
- Anti-Inflammatory: Lupeol, ergosterol and betulinic acid directly reduce inflammation in the body
- Anti-Bacterial: Protects against the growth of harmful bacteria
- Anti-Fungal: Protects against systemic conditions such as athlete’s foot
- Anti-Aging: SODs absorb free radicals and prevent cell oxidation
- Anti-Candida: Helps to protect against yeast infections
- Beautifying: Melanin helps to enhance the condition of skin and hair
- B-Vitamins: A natural source of B-vitamins
- Antioxidants: Contains the highest levels of antioxidants of any natural substance
- Adaptogen: Helps to improve the body’s natural ability to deal with stress
- Safe to Use: Chaga has no recorded side effects, and it is safe to use by all ages
Chaga Mushroom Promising Potential
Known as a long-used folk remedy, chaga’s reported health benefits led the renowned physician, F.I Inozemtsev conducting the first chaga clinical trials at the Moscow Medical Institute. The studies revealed that chaga was able to support the functioning of the immune system, and in some instances halt or even reverse the spread of tumors. These findings led chaga to become and approved anti-cancer medicine in the Soviet Union in 1955.
It wasn’t until the late-1960s when chaga started to be noticed in the Western World, which was due to the release of a book by the Nobel Prize-winning scientist, Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn. In the 1968 novel, The Cancer Ward, Solzhenitsyn reveals important information about chaga, and how it can play a role in reducing cancer cells.
The presence of beta-glucans in chaga have caught the attention of cancer treatment researchers. . Studies have also shown that chaga has potential chemotherapeutic properties, which is why many people take it to help reduce the side-effects of conventional cancer treatments. Many mycologists believe that chaga mushrooms, as well as turkey tail mushrooms, are some of the most effective natural immune-strengthening substances around.
How To Use Chaga Mushroom
Traditionally, chaga has to be carefully harvested, dried, brewed and filtered to make a palatable tea that can be digested by the body. Nowadays, the most convenient way to consume chaga is to use a pre-made and pure, highly concentrated extract powder that is crafted from wild-grown chaga mushrooms.
Chaga has a rich, earthy flavour with a pleasant hint of natural sweetness. Some people compare its taste to a cross between coffee and tea, which is why it’s often used to replace a traditional caffeine-laced morning brew. Chaga can also be blended into smoothies and juices, sprinkled over foods, or added to dishes such as soups, sauces, energy balls and raw chocolates.
Longevity expert David Wolfe says, “why take medicinal mushroom or herb number one-hundred or thousand when you can have number one?’ And that number one is chaga”. Overall, chaga is a powerhouse of nutrients, and its many health-enhancing properties make it an excellent addition to any diet.
Unlike many other chaga mushroom powders, we concentrate ten pounds of raw, wild-grown chaga mushrooms into one pound of pure mushroom extract, which means that you will receive ten times the potency of this exceptional superfood in each serving. The finely-milled powder can be easily absorbed by the body, plus it’s ready to use, so simply add it to your favourite foods and drinks and enjoy.
To get the Highest Quality Chaga Mushroom visit here http://www.hybridherbs.co.uk/chaga-mushroom-extract/
 Wolfe, David: Chaga: King of the Medicinal Mushrooms
 Solzhenitsyn, Aleksandr: The Cancer Ward
 Nong, Shen: Shennong Bencaojing (The Classic of Herbal Medicine)