| Reishi mushrooms grow in the coastal areas of China and are cultivated in Taiwan, Korea, North America, and Japan. It is referred to as the “herb of spiritual potency”, or hing zhi. They are found on fallen tree stumps and decomposing logs. There are six varieties of color, but red mushrooms are used primarily in Asia and North America. Medicinal benefits come from the fruiting part of the mushroom.
Reishi is used to treat asthma, coughs, weakness and fatigue, and insomnia. Polysaccharides, coumarin, sterols, mannitol, and triterpenoids called ganoderic acides are the primary constituents of the mushroom.
Ganoderic acids may be able to lower cholesterol and blood pressure in addition to inhibit blood platelets from sticking together. Although not yet proven, these acids may also be able to treat chronic hepatitis B, altitude sickness, cancer, and diabetes mellitus.