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October 29, 2018

Many people who are curious about chaga wonder what it can be used for. While it is well known as a folk remedy in Siberia and Alaska, the exact mechanics of its health benefits are less clearly understood. This is due to the fact that it wasn’t until recently that chaga was discovered and made available to the wider public.

To put it simply, chaga is known as a superfood for a reason. It has been shown to have an array of positive effects on the body, from boosting immune system health to aiding digestion to slowing the aging process through eliminating free radicals. No matter who you are or what you need, chaga is capable of helping you improve your health.

Using Chaga

Chaga is generally known for its immune-boosting properties, which is a major part of why it is used as a folk remedy in the northern parts of the world. Chaga consumption has been shown to improve the body’s ability to combat disease, making it an ideal method for reducing your likelihood of getting sick during flu season or fighting off illness whenever you do get sick.

Another of chaga’s major benefits is combating free radicals, which helps slow aging. Free radicals are objects in your body that collide with your cells, accelerating the aging process through cellular damage. Chaga is rich in antioxidants, which gives it the ability to reduce the amount of free radicals in your body. This can help you retain your youthful looks for much longer.

In addition to this, chaga has been shown to reduce inflammation and ease digestion. In general, chaga is a good superfood to consume if you are looking for a holistic way to improve your health.

One major use of chaga is in easing inflammatory bowel disease, including Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis. Scientific studies have shown that the antioxidant content in chaga reduces the amount of oxidative stress on digestive cells. Oxidative stress is a major contributor to inflammatory bowel disease, so consuming chaga can make life easier for those who have it and prevent those who don’t have it from developing it.

Chaga is also useful for those who have diabetes. Indeed, chaga has been shown to help regulate blood sugar levels in tandem with insulin. Preliminary studies on mice show that chaga has the ability to not only reduce blood sugar, but it also lowers cholesterol.

Finally, for cancer patients, preliminary research suggests that chaga may also possess anti-cancer properties. Lab tests on lung cancer cells show that chaga extract is capable of inhibiting the growth of these cells. This suggests that chaga is a possible tool that can be used in combating lung cancer, though chaga’s effects on other types of cancer cells have yet to be analyzed.

Chaga Side Effects?

Because chaga has only recently been introduced to a worldwide audience, the long-term effects of consuming it have not been properly analyzed. However, there are a number of extrapolations that can be made based on chaga’s existing effects on the human body.

For example, chaga has been shown to lower blood sugar levels and increase insulin levels in some individuals, which opens the door to potential negative side effects when it is consumed in conjunction with diabetes medications. In addition, chaga can also potentially increase the risk of bleeding, making it potentially dangerous to combine with blood-thinning drugs.

Chaga is rich in oxalate, a substance that is naturally found in other types of foods, such as rhubarb and spinach. However, consumption of too much oxalate has been shown to have negative effects in older people. For example, a case study focused on a woman who consumed four to five teaspoons of chaga mushroom powder per day and suffered reduced kidney function as a result. As a result, individuals with kidney diseases or predispositions to said diseases should be careful about consuming chaga.

Chaga’s anti-cancer properties come with a major caveat: in certain environments, chaga may actually damage normal cells instead of cancer cells. In one study, chaga extracts containing part of the sclerotium (a hard, dark part of certain fungi that holds food reserves and is responsible for ensuring the fungi’s survival in extreme conditions) harmed normal cells instead of cancerous ones.

Finally, chaga has not been thoroughly tested for safety in a number of at-risk groups, including pregnant women, children, and individuals with medical conditions. Using chaga as a replacement for standard care when dealing with a health issue can have major ramifications for your overall wellness.

The Bottom Line

Chaga’s established record as a folk remedy speaks for itself, and both scientific and anecdotal evidence suggests that it has strong health benefits that should not be ignored. However, there is still much we don’t know about chaga, meaning that depending on your specific situation, you may experience adverse effects from consuming it.

If you want to enhance your overall wellness, chaga is worth considering. However, before you take the plunge, you should consider your own health carefully and make decisions based on what you believe to be best for yourself. With proper usage, chaga can become an integral part of your daily routine and an asset for your health.


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