Reishi Mushroom/Ganoderma Lucidum 

This week, we continue with mushrooms because it is essential to disseminate and publicize their nutritional and therapeutic benefits; remember that Mexico is the second country with the highest biodiversity in these, only behind China.  

Reishi mushroom, also known as Ganoderma lucidum, is a medicinal mushroom widely used in traditional Chinese and Japanese medicine for its potential health benefits. It is attributed to antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, immunomodulatory, and adaptogenic properties, which can help the body adapt and resist stress. 

Its first records of use date back to the second millennium B.C. in the search for the ‘elixir of life’ by Emperor Quin Shi Huang Di (known for the construction of the Great Wall), to whom Reishi was given as a gift. After this episode, all specimens of this mushroom were reserved exclusively for the Chinese emperor.

Reishi remains the most valuable natural substance in traditional Chinese medicine today. Its applications were already documented in the work of Chinese medicine of the sixteenth century by the universal scholar Li Shih-Chen.

His fungus became the center of modern science in the 1950s, with more detailed research being carried out mainly in China and Japan. Traditionally, infusions were made from dehydrated Reishi. To this day, its infusion is still considered a traditional form. 

It is one of the best-studied fungi, with more than 5,000 publications on its applications, history, and active biomolecules. The benefits of Reishi are due to the presence of these active biomolecules or specific nutrients. Among them, are polysaccharides such as beta-glucans (especially β-D-glucans), terpenes (especially triterpenes), peptidoglycans, etc.  

In addition, in the last 10 years, the scientific article portal Pubmed has published more than 1400 articles on Reishi, reflecting the growing interest in the applications of mushrooms in general, and Ganoderma in particular. 

In one of these studies, it was shown that different compounds of the fungus Ganoderma lucidum produce different effects in human and murine immune cells, thus enhancing the functions of lymphocytes, monocytes, macrophages, dendritic cells, neutrophils, and natural killer cells.

As reported by some authors, the polysaccharides of this edible mushroom constitute the main immunomodulators and produce a direct antitumor effect. On the other hand, triterpenes kill tumor cells by inducing apoptosis and interfering with the cell cycle.  

In conclusion, the water-soluble and water-insoluble fractions of this mushroom exhibit various effects and are capable of improving the anti-cancer immune response and minimizing the side effects of chemotherapy  

Some of the potential benefits of Reishi include: 

  1. Immune System Booster: It is believed that Reishi can stimulate immune cell activity, thereby strengthening the immune system’s response. 
  2. Reduced inflammation: The compounds present in Reishi may have anti-inflammatory properties that help reduce inflammation in the body. 
  3. Improved sleep quality: Reishi may help enhance sleep quality and reduce stress, contributing to better rest. 
  4. Liver Support: Some studies have shown that Reishi can protect the liver and help improve its function. 
  5. Possible anti-cancer effect: Although more research is needed, some preliminary studies suggest that Reishi could have anti-cancer properties and help treat cancer. 

Ganoderic acid 
Ganoderic acid is a bioactive compound in the Reishi mushroom (Ganoderma lucidum). It has been identified as one of the key components responsible for the potential health benefits associated with Reishi. Ganoderic acid has been studied for its antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antitumor, and hepatoprotective properties. 

Some of the possible effects of Ganoderic acid include: 
1. Antioxidant properties: Ganoderic acid can help neutralize free radicals in the body, protecting cells from oxidative damage and contributing to overall health.
2. Anti-inflammatory effects: It has been suggested that Ganoderic acid may help reduce inflammation in the body, which may benefit chronic inflammatory conditions. 
3. Anti-cancer potential: Some studies have shown that Ganoderic acid may have antitumor effects by inhibiting the growth of cancer cells and promoting programmed cell death. 
4. Liver protection: Ganoderic acid has been observed to have protective effects on the liver, helping to improve liver function and protect against liver damage. 

Ganoderic acid is found in different Reishi supplements, such as extracts, capsules, or powder. Reishi can be consumed as a supplement in capsules, powder, liquid extract, or tea. It is important to note that while Reishi is generally considered safe, it can interact with certain medications and is not recommended for use in some situations, such as during pregnancy or breastfeeding. 

Nowadays, Ganoderma preparations range from soluble coffee, microdoses, tinctures, gummies, and capsules. Consuming products of maximum purity and avoiding those mixed with sugar (generally the most commonly sold) is essential. Also, know your current health conditions, medications, individuality, allergies, foods, or drug sensitivity to offer you the correct dose and/or mushroom for your needs. 


  • Dr. Irving Ramírez

    Dr. Irving Ramirez-Alvia, Naturopath, was born in Tepic, Nayarit, in 1992. After obtaining a degree in health and nutrition, Dr. Irving finished medical school and moved to Vallarta. His newly-opened office is at Lord Twigg’s Hotel and Boutique, Francisco Villa #424, Colonia Lazaro Cardenas; his online store features all-natural, homeopathic products and remedies. For an appointment with Dr. Irving in Puerto Vallarta or at FEDA Nutricion and Fitness, Calle Jacarandas 86, in Bucerias, or if you are interested in purchasing Dr. Irving’s CBD oil (5000mg or 10,000mg) without THC, please contact Loren Hayes on WhatsApp at 322-167-7570.

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