Chaga Mushroom Guide

Comprehensive and Complete Guide to Chaga Mushrooms


The Science Behind Chaga

The world first knew about Chaga from the book “The Cancer Ward” by Alexander Solzhenitsyn. Since then, numerous studies and experiments were done all over the world on this magnificent herb that validated and confirmed its effectiveness as a treatment not just for cancer, but also for many types of sicknesses caused by harmful pathogens.

With all the information gathered on this high-quality mushroom, there is no longer a doubt that it can really be very beneficial to us. There are two major things Chaga can do for us: it can improve our health, and it can heal us of many diseases.

It behooves us then to learn more about this magnificent mushroom and the benefits it can give us. The following information shows the scientific findings and results of studies and experiments conducted on Chaga’s effectiveness in treating or reversing different medical conditions. We hope this information will help you evaluate Chaga’s potential benefits for yourself.

Chaga Cancer Studies
On January 22, 2004, the American Chemical Society and American Society of Pharmacognosy published a study done by Jordan K. Ziawiony, a professor in the Department of Pharmacognosy, University of Mississippi, regarding the effectiveness of medicinal mushrooms, including Chaga, in fighting cancer cells.

The study stated that substances contained in the mushroom showed strong antimicrobial activity, making them a good source of new antibiotics. Numerous compounds on these fungi displayed cytotoxic, antiviral and antineoplastic activities, the study said.

The paper also stated that these compounds, which are called BRMs or biological response modifiers, have high molecular weights. They function as immunopotentiators which prevents carcinogenesis, shows direct anti-cancer effects and prevents metastasis.

Furthermore, there are other studies which show the superiority of Chaga over other medicinal mushrooms. This fungus has the highest antioxidant level of all medicinal mushrooms. The SOD amounts of most mushrooms are only within the limits of 1,400 to 1,500, while Chaga has 35,000. SOD stands for super oxide dismutase.

Another factor which elevates Chaga from other medicinal treatments for cancer is its ORAC scores. ORAC stands for Oxygen Radical Absorbance Qualtiy. Clove oil has the highest ORAC score of all essential oils at 10,786,875. Chaga’s score is 4 times more than that of Clove’s score. Therefore, it has more antioxidant capabilities than the highest of all essential oils. That means it is more effective in fighting cancer cells.

Chaga Anti-Inflammation Studies
A study published in the Journal of Medicinal Food, Volume 10, Issue 1, May 12, 2007 discussed the anti-inflammatory effect of an ethanol extract of Inonotus Obliquus, or Chaga. It stated that: “a 70% ethanol extract of L. obliquus (Chaga) showed antioxidative effects”. They also tested the ability of this Chaga extract to inhibit the inflammatory cascades in lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced RAW 264.7 macropage cells. They found that the “nitrous oxide (NO) inhibition of the extract was better than that of the other ethanol extracts of L.obliquus.” The study concluded that, based on the experiments, 70% ethanol extract of Chaga “might have useful clinical applications in the management of inflammatory diseases and may also be useful as a medicinal food.”

Chaga Anti-Aging Studies
A positive side effect of the ability of Chaga to stop the growth of cancer cells is its anti-aging capabilities. Experiments done in the Laboratory of Stem Cell and Tumor Biology, Seoul National University in South Korea reported that: “the Chaga mushroom extracts… prevented the inhibition of GJIC (gap junctional intercellular communication) through the blocking of Cx43 phosphorylation. …GJIC has an important function in maintaining tissue homeostasis through regulation of cell growth, differentiation, apoptosis and adaptive functions of differentiated cells. Thus, Chaga mushrooms may... prevent the inhibition of GJIC through inactivation of ERK1/2 and p38 MAP kinase.”.

By inhibiting the actions of certain substances that affects the demise of our cells, Chaga effectively functions as an anti-aging agent.

Other Pertinent Chaga Studies
There are other chemical analysis done on Chaga which showed that it contains a diverse range of secondary metabolites such as melanins, lanostane-type triterpenoids and melanins. These are substances which act as antioxidants, antiviral and antitumoral agents that can strengthen the immune system against the attack of harmful germs.

For example, a report submitted by Prof. E. A. Dosychev, V.N. in May 1973 in the journal Vestnik Dermatologii I Venerologii tells how Chaga was used in treating psoriasis in 48 patients with concurrent chronic inflammatory diseases. The treatments lasted from 3 months to 2 years. Psoriasis completely disappeared in 38 patients and 8 patients showed definite signs of improvement. Together with the disappearance of psoriasis, their concurrent inflammatory diseases were healed as well.

Typical Chaga Extract Preparation
The usual method of preparing Chaga extracts used in tests and experiments is as follows:

• Chaga mushrooms sourced from Russia are used. The essence is extracted under optimal water extraction conditions.
• The mushrooms are dried and then crushed.
• About 1 kilo of the crushed mushrooms are boiled at 100º C for 4 hours and allowed to cool at room temperature.
• It is then filtered.
• By using a rotary vacuum evaporator, the extract is evaporated to dryness.
• It is then freeze-dried to obtain a powdery form.
• Then the stock Chaga extract is prepared by dissolving this powder in about 50 ml of water.
• A basal medium is used in the experimental concentrations.

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