What is this Chaga and why are all the health nuts going mental over it? Well, I’ll answer that in this blog as well as how to use it in my favourite drink that tastes like a creamy and rich hot chocolate.
With chemicals in our environment, food is grown fast for consumption and sprayed with all sorts of pesticides our bodies are craving nutrients. One of the ways I started to get healthy is to incorporate superfoods into my diet. Nowadays I also try to add in seasonal and as many wild foods as possible too.
Where does Chaga Mushroom come from?
Chaga is a mushroom that grows on the bark of the birch trees in the colder regions across the northern hemisphere. In the East, it has been consumed as a medicinal tea for millennia and it is now gaining popularity in the West due to its health benefits.
Due to its 200+ immune-boosting phytochemicals, antioxidants, cancer-fighting properties and adaptogenic properties, chaga mushroom has a long list of health benefits.
With its pharmaceutical-grade healing powers, it is known to be more powerful than other medicinal mushrooms (1). Research is taking place particularly in Russia where it grows abundantly. We will discuss only the top three health benefits of chaga.
Top 3 health benefits of chaga mushroom
Immune System Support
Chaga gives the immune system a boost when that is necessary. It also slows down the immune system when it is too active. So chaga is a natural Biological Response Modifier (BRM). This is due to its high content of Beta-D-Glucans, which balance the response of the immune system.
As it modulates the immune system, it helps to treat auto-immune diseases. In the East, it has been used for centuries to support digestive health. That is because a stronger immune system can fight off bacteria like Helicobacter pylori which cause stomach ulcers. Chaga tea gently soothes those ulcers till they are healed.
Cancer Fighting Agent
Chaga tea activates immune cells whose function is to fight the beginning of cancer. Research into chaga tea’s cancer-fighting properties is ongoing since there may be phytochemicals in it that can cure cancer. So far it has been found to be effective in supporting chemotherapy by counter-acting the therapy’s negative effects.Show Me More!
Chaga is an Adaptogen
An adaptogen is a herb that has the unique ability to “adapt” its function according to changing needs of the body. It acts in the same way that a thermostat acts to regulate systems. So chaga:
- Restores the balance in the body.
- Gently tones and supports the nervous system, the immune system, the digestive tract, the circulatory system and the endocrine system. Through its support, we can cope with stress, stay immune to colds and flu, and fight off cancer.
- By normalizing the adrenal glands it can lift the user out of depression and counter-act the effects of stress (1).
Chaga needs to be taken for a minimum of two months to develop the full effect of its healing powers. Chaga is definitely a super-food.
Enjoy chaga in your smoothies, energy balls or make a supercharged drink like this one! Get creative and let me know how you go! Also let me know what you think of my chaga dance in the video, yes it gives you engery!
Chaga hot chocolate recipe
- 1 cup coconut milk
- 1/2 tsp chaga powder
- 1 tsp sweetener – I used monk fruit
- Dash Cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp Vanilla extract
- 1 tsp cacao powder
- 1 tsp carob powder
- 1 tsp grass fed butter
Supercharged version with optional Ingredients
- 1/2 tsp Lion’s Mane
- 1 scoop bulletproof collagen powder
Add to blender until hot enough to drink, or blend and then simmer in a pot. You don’t want to over boil your drink. Next, I want to try using it in a butter icing for some healthy doughnuts I’m making. The possibilities are endless! Get healthy today!
1. Health Benefits of Chaga Mushrooms, https://www.annandachaga.com/pages/chagahealthbenefits