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The Practical Herbalist

Ganoderma, Immortality Mushroom

Ganoderma is a mushroom with quite a reputation. It is known by the lofty title, "Taoist mushroom of immortality". There are legendary stories of incredible healing attributed to ganoderma. The end result is that ganoderma is widely available in a variety of products, for a wide variety of concerns.

In China the herb is known as ling zhi cao, which loosely translates to "spiritual vegetable meat". It is also known in Japanese as Reishi. Regardless of the name, Ganoderma is getting more well known in the United States. Many supplement users are adding ganoderma to their daily routines. Ganoderma is said to strengthen the body, specifically the bones and tendons, it regulates blood pressure and helps to oxygenate the blood. Mushrooms in general are used to drain "damp" functions in the body. "Damp" as a herbal diagnostic criteria, is often associated with cancer. As a result Ganoderma has often been used in herbal formulas for helping patients deal with cancer and other life threatening conditions.

Ganoderma is now commonly used in a "herbal coffee" as a substitute for real coffee. In general ganoderma is a mild and safe herb that tonifies the body. It is a herb that I don't worry about when patients are supplementing it. In many ways this mushroom is an extreme food. If you like the taste and it makes you feel better, then it may be helpful to you.

David Bock

This article was from David's LakeCountryOnline.com column, "The Practical Herbalist"

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David Bock, C. Ac., Dipl. OM, FABORM
Wisconsin Certified Acupuncturist
National Board Certification in Oriental Medicine
Fellow American Board Of Oriental Reproductive Medicine

Bock Acupuncture & Herbal Medicine
888 Thackeray Trail #206
Oconomowoc, Wisconsin 53066