WHAT IS CHAGA?
WHAT IS CHAGA?
Chaga (Inonotus obliquus) is a type of mushroom that grows mainly on birch trees in northern Europe, Asia, Canada, and the northeastern United States.
Chaga is known by a lot of names around the world. it is called kreftkjuke in Norway, Chinese call chaga names like Hua Jie Kong Jun or Bahua Rong. The Cree name is pōsākan. The Chipewyan and Ojibway name is Chaʼaʼihtthi. In Japanese it is called kabanoanatake, and Germans call it tschagapilz.
The mushroom has a hard texture that can be dried, powdered, and used to make Chaga tea, extracts, or tinctures. Less commonly, the powder is packed into capsules for use as a dietary supplement.
ORIGIN OF CHAGA
Ainu tribe in eastern Asia have been using Chaga for many years and records claim that this native tribe has been using the mushroom for at least 600 years ago for its antioxidant properties. We can confidently say that the usage of Chaga spans for hundreds of years prior to the first documented evidence of its use. In most ancient scripts, the Chaga mushroom is described as a “gift of nature”, “diamond of the forest,” and “King of the herbs,” due to its healing ability, and high nutritional content.
Chaga grows when it begins when a fruiting body of a higher fungi species enters a wound of a mature tree, forming a large hardened mycelial mass (the conk) that will continue to grow until it is harvested or falls to the forest floor. Chaga is unique among mushrooms as it is rare to see the fruiting body in nature, with the hardened mycelial mass holding the herbal value. Mushroom goes through many stages during its life cycle, just like any plant or animal. Each part of a mushroom has unique attributes that support wellness and serve a different purpose for the organism, but the fruiting bodies receive the most attention and are the most familiar.
WHAT CHAGA LOOKS LIKE
WHERE IT GROWS
According to Geographical location, the Chaga mushroom grows on birch trees and is found large masses in the colder climates in the northern hemisphere of Russia, Northern Europe, Canada and Northern United States. It is a black-gold mushroom that grows for 10–20 years on a birch tree into a hard, woody mass. It will grow on maple or ash trees, but itʼs important to get it from birch trees for the most benefits.
Most scientists hold the view that chaga is an infection that invades the tree through wounds, such as where a branch has broken off. The host tree can live for some time with the chaga, but eventually it will rot. Chagaʼs benefits come mainly from concentrating the betulinic acid found in birch bark so when chaga is harvested from other types of trees or when cultivated, the properties and taste will be inferior.
Most chaga processed powders are sold in Scandinavia, Russia, Siberia, Canada, or the United States. You can also find chaga in your local park or forest if you live in a cooler climate.
HEALTH BENEFITS AND TRADITIONAL USES OF CHAGA
Chaga is rich in fiber and essential nutrients, including vitamin D, iron, magnesium, potassium, manganese, and calcium. Chaga Mushroom offers numerous health benefits which includes the following:
May Help Prevent Liver Injury
- Chaga may help in preventing and slowing the progression of certain liver problems. It helps to alleviate the inflammation and oxidative stress that fuels chronic liver diseases, such as viral hepatitis or non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. Korean research team of International Journal of Medicinal Mushrooms opined that a water-based extract of Chaga was able to protect biopsied liver tissue from the oxidative effects of a chemical (tertbutyl hydroperoxide) known to cause liver damage.
A 2006 study found that chaga mushrooms could lower blood sugar in rats. The rodents were genetically modified to have diabetes and to be obese. After eating chaga mushrooms for 8 weeks, their blood sugar levels were lower.
Chaga contains the antioxidant triterpene and other metabolites that may help kill free radicals. A study in 2018 as published in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology opined that Chaga may offer anti-cancer effects.
- Chaga extracts helps to positively impact immunity by reducing long-term inflammation and fighting harmful bacteria and viruses by promoting the formation of beneficial cytokines that helps regulate the immune system. Chaga stimulates white blood cells, which are essential for fighting off harmful bacteria or viruses.
May Reduce Risk of Heart Disease
In a study of rats from 2009, Chaga extract was shown to reduces bad” LDL cholesterol while increasing antioxidant levels and in turn “good” HDL cholesterol.
- Chaga Protects You from The Sun
The sunʼs dangerous rays and UV beams can cause skin cancer and induce dark sunspots as we grow older. Chaga has some of the highest forms of pigment and melanin available which helps to provide an immense amount of UV protection. Chaga helps to effectively reduce dark sunspots that can be found on the skin because of harmful UV exposure.
- Slow the Process of Aging with Chaga
When free radicals are much in your body due to pollution, exposure or stress, your skin tends to suffer, The parasitic properties comprised in Chaga does an awesome job of fighting these free radicals to help slow the aging process down. Antioxidants in Chaga eliminate oxidative stress that may be rampant in the skin and prevents the onset of wrinkles, discoloration, and acne.
- Restoring Skin Elasticity
Skin benefits of chaga include its innate ability to restore elasticity to the skin while doing a great job of aiding in collagen production. Chaga got Betulonic acid which helps in skin regeneration. It also aids in the restoration and regeneration of skin cells that would effectively help in bringing back the natural look of your skin.
- Fighting Acne
Chaga has enzymes that assists in keeping your skin moist while reducing clogging and dirt build-up that results to acne.
BEST RECIPES FOR TAKING CHAGA
How do you prepare it?
Chaga can be made into a syrup, tea, bath agent.
The easiest way to make Chaga tea is by adding chaga powder to boiled water and letting it sit for around 10 minutes. Use 1 tea spoon or about 15-20 g per litre of water. Steep for 10 minutes. The other method is by doing a long boil extraction by letting chaga chunks boil for 4-6 hours. The color of fully brewed chaga tea should be darker than a cup of strong, black coffee. More color > Much better flavour > Most health benefits.
Store extra tea in a mason jar in the fridge to reheat later, or use it in your smoothies or cooking. Donʼt throw away the chunks! Sometimes you can get a second or even 3rd brew out of the same chunks. Just add more water to your crockpot and rebrew. Or, take out the chunks and let them dry out on the counter for later use. You can add ‘spent chunksʼ to you broths or sauces.
You can store tea in a mason jar in the fridge to reheat later, use as iced tea, or use it in your smoothies or cooking. Donʼt throw away the chunks! Chaga chunks can be boiled multiple times. Just add more water to your crockpot and rebrew. Or, take out the chunks and let them dry out on the counter for later use. You can add ’spent chunksʼ to you broths or sauces.
Don’t have a crock pot? No problem. Use a pot with a tight fitting lid, but you will have to keep an eye on evaporation. You can also use a thermos in a pinch, but you will not be getting the same depth of color or flavour this way.
The most common taste description we see is that the taste is earthy and coffee-like; others will tell you that it tastes like dishwater. To make a more palatable tea, add honey or sweetener which brings out its slight vanilla-like essence.
We recommend taking half a teaspoon to one teaspoon 1-2 times daily. Although chaga and other mushroom supplements have been shown to have no or almost no side effects and to be very safe, there have been very few cases with adverse side effects to people with pre-existing medical conditions or over-use of chaga. Please follow directions on product labels and consult your physician or other healthcare professional before using.
Special Precautions & Warnings:
Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Not for use during pregnancy or lactation.
Auto-immune diseases: This includes multiple sclerosis, systemic lupus erythematosus, rheumatoid arthritis (RA), or other conditions.
Bleeding disorders: Totally avoid chaga if you have a bleeding disorder.
Surgery: Stop the usage of chaga at least 2 weeks before a surgery.
These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. If pregnant/lactating or taking any medications, please consult your physician prior to use.
Where Can I Buy Chaga?
You can buy our live chaga on this website, here. Or you can also buy our chaga extract located here. Use discount code 10OFFCHAGA to get 10% off of your order! Subscribe to our newsletter in the footer section to receive any information on promotions, valuable insights, or info on new product launches!