Can Chaga Mushrooms Manage Diabetes?

What are the health benefits of chaga mushrooms?

What is diabetes?

Is chaga good for diabetes?

Do chaga mushrooms have hypoglycemic potential?

Can Chaga Help Diabetes-Related Kidney Disease?

How can you take chaga for diabetes?

What are Chaga mushrooms?

The chaga mushroom (Inonotus obliquus) is a sterile mushroom that grows on birch trees. It is one of the most commonly used fungi in alternative medicine, known for its anticancer potential and antioxidant activity. Wild chaga mushrooms prefer cooler climates and grow mainly in North America and the northern parts of Asia and Europe.

Health Benefits of Chaga Mushrooms

Chaga mushrooms provide many health benefits. Research shows that Inonotus obliquus could help manage diabetesthanks to its ability to lower blood sugar levels.

In addition to controlling blood sugar, this medicinal mushroom lowers blood pressure, strengthens the immune system, reduces inflammationand may even promote physical endurance.

Chaga reduces damage caused by oxidation and is one of the most powerful antioxidants known.

Some of the most widely researched beneficial properties of chaga mushrooms is:

  • immunomodulatory effects
  • ability to deal with skin problems
  • ability to prevent blood clotting and platelet aggregation
  • anti-cancer action (Chaga promotes the apoptosis of cancer cellswhich can fight cancer and prevent cancer from spreading)
  • ability to lower blood pressure
  • potential to help treat autoimmune diseases
  • ability to reduce oxidative stress

Bioactive compounds found in Chaga mushrooms

Inonotus obliquus contains over 400 bioactive compounds, each with unique benefits. Some of the most talked about compounds in chaga mushrooms are:

  • triterpenoids
  • polysaccharides
  • polyphenols
  • ergosterol peroxide
  • betulic acid
  • inotodiol

While researchers are just beginning to examine the potential of many of these compounds, some are already known to have profound effects. For example, Polysaccharides found in chaga have been shown to treat chronic diseases and prevent metabolic disorders.

What is Diabetes?

Diabetes (Diabetes mellitus) is a chronic health condition that affects your body’s ability to convert the food (more specifically the carbohydrates and sugars) you eat into energy.

A healthy body breaks down carbohydrates into sugars and releases these sugars into the bloodstream. The pancreas then releases insulin, a peptide hormone that allows cells to absorb sugar and use it for energy.

People with diabetes don’t make enough (or any) insulin or have trouble using insulin properly. Therefore, the sugars cannot enter the cells and provide energy to the body.

The two types of diabetes

Type 1 diabetes and type 2 diabetes lead to both high blood sugar levels and complications of diabetes due to high blood sugar. However, the mechanisms behind these diseases are different.

Type 1 diabetes is usually inherited and begins earlier in life, often in childhood or early adolescence. People with this type of diabetes do not produce insulin. Therefore, they must take insulin shots to enable their bodies to convert food into energy.

Type 2 diabetes is often the result of a poor lifestyle, although people with a family history of diabetes are more prone to developing it. People with this type have higher insulin resistance (do not respond well to insulin) or do not produce as much insulin as they should. In addition to insulin, treatment for type 2 diabetes may include oral diabetes medication.

Symptoms of diabetes

Early symptoms of diabetes include increased hunger and thirst, frequent urination, dry skin and weight loss. All these symptoms will go away once a person starts taking insulin.

However, if a person with diabetes does not take medication or limit their sugar intake, they may develop long-term complications, such as:

  • eye problems
  • slower wound healing
  • nerve pain and damage
  • skin infections
  • kidney problems

Is Chaga good for diabetes?

According to animal studies, Chaga mushrooms have incredible anti-diabetic potential. ONE 2017 study examined the effects of Inonotus obliquus polysaccharides on streptozotocin-induced type 2 diabetes in diabetic mice and the potential mechanisms of its antidiabetic effects.

Mice were fed a high-fat diet and received 900 mg of chaga extract. The researchers examined the effect of Inonotus obliquus polysaccharide on resting blood glucose levels, which were significantly reduced after taking chaga.

Although further research is needed, activation of the PI3K-Akt pathway could be the mechanism behind chaga’s antidiabetic effects. This pathway promotes metabolism and cell growth and Its damage is closely related to type 2 diabetes.

Chaga for diabetes

Hypoglycemic Effects of Chaga Mushrooms

Chaga regulates blood glucose levels and provides hypoglycemic effects in diabetic mice. One animal study examined the effects of chaga mushrooms on diabetic mice and compared them to their effects on non-diabetic mice.

While Inonotus obliquus did not affect blood sugar levels in healthy mice, it significantly lowered glucose levels in mice with diabetes. In addition, chaga helped repair the pancreas in mice with diabetes-related tissue damage.

Chaga and Diabetes-Related Nephropathy

According the Journal of Diabetes InvestigationDiabetic nephropathy and related kidney failure are major health concerns for those struggling with diabetes. Taking a chaga supplement could reduce kidney damage caused by diabetes.

ONE 2016 study examined the renal protective effects of polysaccharides found in Inonotus obliquus. Mice given chaga extract for 8 weeks showed fewer signs of diabetes-related kidney damage compared to those not given the supplement.

If you have diabetes, long-term chaga supplementation could be beneficial, as it will not cause any harm, but may provide protection to your organs from damage caused by chronic disease.

What can we say definitively? Chaga and diabetes

Here’s what we know so far about Cordyceps and diabetes:

  1. An animal study suggests that chaga mushrooms have incredible anti-diabetic potential as they activate the PI3K-Akt pathway.
  2. Inonotus obliquus regulates blood sugar levels and can have a hypoglycemic effect on those with diabetes without affecting sugar levels in healthy individuals.
  3. Chaga mushrooms can relieve some symptoms of diabetes and even prevent long-term kidney damage caused by the disease.
  4. More human studies are needed to investigate the underlying mechanisms of chaga mushrooms and their effects on diabetes.
  5. Since there are no downsides to taking chaga mushrooms, it may make sense to include them as a complementary medicine for diabetes management.

Are you interested in Taking Chaga for diabetes?

If you are interested in taking chaga mushrooms for diabetes management and prevention, why not take them with your breakfast?

 AdaptogenShroomsSuperfood Granola

Our healthy mushroom granola contains a daily dose of ultra-concentrated chaga extract, as well as extracts of other healthy mushrooms—lion’s mane and cordyceps (which also has antidiabetic potential).

And if you don’t like the earthy taste of mushrooms, don’t worry! Our Mushroom Granola comes in three delicious flavors: Sunflower Cocoa, Cinnamon and Vanilla Almond.

Frequently Asked Questions about Chaga and Diabetes

What are the side effects of chaga mushroom?

There do not seem to be any studies that indicate any negative effects of chaga mushrooms, and centuries of use suggest that this mushroom is completely safe. However, you should be careful about certain drug interactions when consuming chaga.

In 2006 study, a chaga extract inhibited platelet aggregation, leading to slow blood clotting. In healthy people, this results in a reduced risk of blood clots. However, if you have a bleeding disorder or are going to have surgery soon, chaga mushrooms may increase your risk of bleeding.

Who should not use chaga?

For generally healthy people, it is perfectly safe to consume chaga supplements. However, people with bleeding disorders should be careful, as these medicinal mushrooms slow down blood clotting, which could lead to excessive bleeding if you are injured.

Although there is no evidence that chaga could be unsafe for pregnant or breastfeeding women, many choose to avoid chaga (and other adaptogenic mushrooms) during pregnancy.

Does chaga interfere with blood pressure medications?

Chaga mushrooms do not interfere with blood pressure medications. However, this fungus may have beneficial effects on the cardiovascular system, including lowering blood pressure and preventing heart attack. Therefore, taking chaga may be beneficial for people with high blood pressure, whether they are on medication or not.

How long does it take for chaga to work?

You need to take chaga every day for about two to three weeks before you start to notice results. Over time and with regular use, its effects will be more pronounced, especially if you take the medicinal mushroom for its immune-boosting and anti-cancer properties.

How much chaga should I take daily?

This depends on the type of chaga supplement you are taking. If you take chaga powder, the recommended dose of chaga it can be anywhere from 1 teaspoon to 2 tablespoons, depending on what you are taking the chaga for. In general, you should not exceed 2000 mg of chaga per day, as well Inonotus obliquus contains a fair amount of oxalates.

For those new to adaptogenic mushrooms, it is best to try a lower dose on yourself and increase as needed.

If you prefer chaga tea or chaga-enriched foods, you should follow the dosage and instructions provided by the company, as each brand contains a different amount of this mushroom.

Your best bet is to combine a chaga mushroom supplement with a food fortified with this mushroom to make sure you’re getting enough chaga each day.

Does chaga help you sleep?

Taking chaga mushrooms can improve the quality of your sleep. This adaptogenic mushroom has relaxing properties and can help your body to soothe. So if anxiety is preventing you from sleeping well, taking chaga supplements could be helpful.

Does chaga lower cholesterol?

According a scientific study, the benefits of chaga mushrooms include lowering cholesterol levels and reducing the risk of cholesterol-related diseases. Chaga is particularly helpful in reducing LDL cholesterol, which is referred to as “bad cholesterol” because of its harmful effects on the cardiovascular system.

What are the two sides of chaga?

Due to its popularity, people overharvest chaga. Unfortunately, overharvesting can lead to the extinction of the species. If you don’t want to contribute to overharvesting, be sure to buy chaga products from companies that source their chaga mushrooms ethically.

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