Cordyceps

How Functional Mushroom Support Immune Health

Tabletop herbal medicine vignette with Red Ginseng and finely cut dried mushrooms on the wooden table

Article at a Glance:

  • Functional mushrooms have been shown to support immunity by turning on proteins involved in the immune response.
  • Lion's Mane, Cordyceps, and Reishi are three functional mushrooms that contain the fiber beta-glucan, which supports the activity of innate immune cells.
  • Try our selection of functional mushroom gummies for a delicious and convenient way to keep your immune system healthy.

Many people have increased interest in the importance of a healthy immune system. A robust immune system can protect the body from harmful viruses, bacteria, and infections.

One way to support the immune system is by taking a functional mushroom supplement.

Functional mushrooms are found to have specific health benefits beyond basic nutrition that are identified as safe to consume.

These diamonds in the rough are well-known for their cognitive benefits, but they may also provide immune support when combined with a healthy lifestyle.

How Functional Mushrooms Provide Immune Support

Three key functional mushrooms may support the immune system in several ways - Lion’s Mane, Cordyceps, and Reishi.

Lion’s Mane

Lion's Mane mushrooms are large, white, shaggy mushrooms resembling a lion's mane. Animal research shows Lion's Mane may support immunity by increasing the activity of the intestinal immune system.

This is thought to be partially due to beneficial changes in the gut bacteria that stimulate the immune system. And since 70-80% of our immune cells are located in our gut, this is a definite positive for the strength of your immune system.[1]

Healthy gut bacteria can protect our body from harmful pathogens (i.e., disease-causing organisms) that can enter our mouth and nose.[2]

Cordyceps

Cordyceps is a type of functional mushroom residing primarily in China's high mountain regions. They have been used for centuries in traditional Chinese medicine and may play a role in immunity.

These functional mushrooms have been found to positively affect innate immunity, which is the body's first response to a harmful substance. In research studies, they have been found to activate the immune system, supporting the barrier that keeps harmful pathogens from entering the body.[3]

Reishi

Reishi mushrooms also originate from the hot and humid regions of Asia and have been used as medicinal mushrooms for hundreds of years. These mushrooms may support immunity by affecting the genes in white blood cells, which are critical to immune health.

Research has shown that particular ingredients found in reishi mushrooms can also support the activity of natural killer cells, a type of white blood cell that fights infection.[4,5]

The Bottom Line

Lion's Mane, Cordyceps, and Reishi are all functional mushrooms used for thousands of years in traditional Chinese medicine. They have been used for several health benefits but may also provide immune support. 

Currently, research is still ongoing regarding their potential as an immune support supplement, but initial studies are very alluring.

Functional Mushroom Gummies

How can you apply the immune-supporting benefits functional mushrooms have? Try Fungies® mushroom gummies. They’re quick and easy to take, delicious, and available as Lion’s Mane, Cordyceps, or Reishi extracts.

Grab a bottle or two today and experience the wonder of functional mushrooms firsthand.

Get Your Gummies

References

  1. Wiertsema SP, van Bergenhenegouwen J, Garssen J, Knippels LMJ. Nutrients. 2021 Mar 9;13(3):886. doi: 10.3390/nu13030886. PMID: 33803407; PMCID: PMC8001875.
  2. Sheng X, Yan J, Meng Y, Kang Y, Han Z, Tai G, Zhou Y, Cheng H. Food Funct. 2017 Mar 22;8(3):1020-1027. doi: 10.1039/c7fo00071e. PMID: 28266682.
  3. Lin B, Li S. Cordyceps as an Herbal Drug. In: Benzie IFF, Wachtel-Galor S, editors. Boca Raton (FL): CRC Press/Taylor & Francis; 2011. Chapter 5. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK92758/
  4. Lin ZB. J Pharmacol Sci. 2005 Oct;99(2):144-53. doi: 10.1254/jphs.crj05008x. PMID: 16230843.
  5. Gao Y, Zhou S, Jiang W, Huang M, Dai X. Immunol Invest. 2003 Aug;32(3):201-15. doi: 10.1081/imm-120022979. PMID: 12916709.

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          Rare elements include dried roots, cordyceps, ginseng, Ganoderma lucidum, against a backdrop of yellow paper