March 18, 2019 3 min read
The chaga mushroom, previously known only to natives of Alaska and Siberia, has exploded into worldwide popularity in recent years. Used as a folk remedy in the far north for generations, one of chaga’s most notable qualities is its ability to boost immune system health, on top of reducing aging through the elimination of free radicals, improving digestive health, and much more. But how exactly does chaga improve the immune system?
The answer is through stimulating cytokines, an important part of the immune system. Chaga has been proven to help insulate the body against disease as well as help fight disease off when you’re sick. Read on to learn how chaga can help you ward off illness.
Chaga is dense with many nutrients, but the most important in regards to immune system health are phytonutrients, plant-based saccharides that target the immune system. Saccharides are used in the creation of glycoforms, cellular structures that are used for cell-to-cell communication. A healthy influx of saccharides is a great aid in creating glycoforms, allowing your cells to adequately convey messages and ensure your body’s healthy functioning.
Where this comes into play with immune system health is through cytokines, which are protein-based structures responsible for conveying messages to white blood cells, the body’s defense against disease. Due to the decentralized nature of the immune system, strong cellular communication is necessary in order for white blood cells to function. Inadequate glycoforms and cytokines will slow the body’s response to pathogens.
Recent research shows that modern diets are insufficient when it comes to creating glycoforms due to the fact that most foods do not contain enough monosaccharides. Chaga can help correct this due to its rich phytonutrient content. The saccharides present in chaga help the body form glycoforms and cytokines as well as speed up their operations, allowing the immune system to respond more rapidly to threats. This is why chaga was traditionally used as a remedy for disease in Alaska and Siberia.
In addition to this, chaga is also extremely rich in polysaccharides. Polysaccharides are responsible for carrying nutrients within the body, delivering them to where they are needed most. This is especially important when you are sick and your body is fighting off pathogens; you need as much nutrition as you can get and you need it delivered as efficiently as possible. Polysaccharides also aid the body in fighting off cancer and HIV.
Chaga is also recognized as an immuno-modulating food that helps raise or lower the activity of white blood cells as needed. This is due to its beta-glucan content, which helps eliminate cancer cells by training the immune system to recognize them as foreign invaders. Beta-glucans also give chaga anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, and anti-malarial properties, making it a good all-purpose way of enhancing overall health.
Finally, chaga is recognized as a good source of triterpenes, which aid immune health by lowering cholesterol levels in the blood. Triterpenes help detoxify the liver and is also a boon to those suffering from hepatitis, asthma, bronchitis, and more. The betulinic acid present in chaga is also an effective anti-cancer treatment due to the fact that it allows the body to destroy cancer cells, preserving the integrity of your cellular makeup.
There are a number of other substances in chaga that have been shown to have positive effects on the immune system. For example, saponins have been shown to lower the risk of cancer as well as stimulate anti-inflammatory activity. It is due to these and other factors that chaga has endured as a remedy for disease for millennia. Scientists are hard at work discovering new uses for chaga, as the wealth of nutrients within it are not fully understood yet, but its immune boosting properties are not disputed.
While the jury is not 100 percent out on chaga’s true usefulness, the fact remains that it is one of the most potent immune system boosters you can consume. Chaga’s usefulness as a means of fighting disease is similar to Echinacea, but far more potent due to its bounty of nutritional content. But beyond merely combating the flu or the sniffles, chaga can help you with chronic conditions such as asthma and even reduce your risk of developing cancer (and help fight it if you do have it).
While everyone’s body is different, chaga’s historical usage as a folk remedy for disease proves that it can help you, too. Whether you’re young, old, or in-between, suffering from chronic diseases or in the best of health, chaga can give you the boost you need to make the most out of the one life you have. By regularly consuming chaga, you can harden your body against the numerous threats it faces and ensure that you can live life to the fullest and on your own terms.
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