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We firmly believe that food is medicine, but when it comes to the reishi mushroom, you could say the medicine is food. Today it’s a part of soups, stews, and teas, but as far as back as 2,000 years ago in China, it was described as the “herb of spiritual potency” and the “mushroom of immortality,” improving memory, enhancing the cardiovascular system, and replenishing vital energy, known as Qi in traditional Chinese medicine (Herbal Medicine: Biomolecular and Clinical Aspects, 2011).
The large, glossy mushroom also happens to have a deliciously deep taste that’s stronger than other mushrooms, so it’s common to find it in capsule, tablet, extract, and powder form. At Clevr, we incorporate reishi into every SuperLatte blend for its well-rounded immunity and adrenal support, not to mention its rich, earthy flavor.
To find out what makes this ‘shroom so special, read on for our reishi primer:
As early as 1400 AD, reishi, also called lingzhi, was memorialized in ancient Chinese texts, paintings, and carvings to symbolize success and divine power. That’s because many Asian countries like China and Japan have long prized this particular fungus as a valuable, natural way to boost health, longevity, and vitality, targeting everything from coughing and asthma to dizziness and heart palpitations. (Herbal Medicine: Biomolecular and Clinical Aspects, 2011).
The “queen healer” mushroom is packed with special compounds that kick your white blood cells — the ones tasked with immune response — into action (Frontiers in Microbiology, 2018). Reishi also has powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory perks that can help ease your fatigue and anxiety (Integrative Medicine, 2014), as well as 400+ health-boosting bioactive compounds like triterpenoids and polysaccharides. (Our reishi extract contains a minimum of 20% polysaccharides to ensure it packs potency.)
If you’re feeling anxious or burnt out, struggling with insomnia, or getting frequent respiratory infections, reishi could be a good fit for your chill-out plan. It’s considered an adaptogen, a class of herbs and plants that help make our bodies and minds more resilient in the face of stress.
Reishi has a deeper, more intense flavor than other mushrooms, which makes it a shoe-in for broths and stews that need extra oomph. Since it can be a little overpowering for some, add according to taste. Start with about four slices of dried reishi and work your way up.
Clevr CEO and Formulator Hannah Mendoza answers your burning questions.
How do you source your reishi?
Like most mushrooms, wild reishi grows directly on the trunks and fallen limbs of hardwood trees. To mimic Mother Nature in an open-sided greenhouse, we use organically grown reishi cultivated on hardwood logs you’d find in the wild — never on grains or rice.
Are there any fillers?
Nope! We meticulously lab-test our reishi extract powder to ensure it’s free of any fillers, heavy metals, and more than 300 chemicals. It’s also milled from the fruiting mushroom body, which contains those important health-boosting compounds (Medicinal Mycology, 2016) — and not from the mycelium, a.k.a. the mushroom’s root system. Digestibility matters, too. Our powder has a strong 4:1 concentration to optimize absorption. We wanted to make sure our reishi gives you the purest, most effective support for building resistance to illness, detoxifying the body, and calming the nerves.
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