Chaga (Inonotus Obliquus)
from The Healing Power of Medicinal Mushrooms, by Denis Manzer
Chaga! Prized as a medicine by all peoples of the Northern regions, Chaga grows for the most part on Birch trees, feeding on their sap and concentrating incredible amounts of medicinal qualities in its body.
According to David Wolfe’s Book “Chaga: King of the Medicinal Mushrooms”, Chaga is known to be;
- Adaptogenic (Combats Stress)
- A Blood Purifier,
- The most potent Anti-Oxidant source ever discovered on the Face of the Planet, with a remarkable potential for scavenging free-radicals.
- One of the most Alkalizing Substances known to Man 10.
- It is shown to be Immune Enhancing and Balancing, Anti-Cancer, Anti-Viral & Anti-Inflammatory! These are thanks once again to Polysaccharides. These essential nutrients for the immune-system enhance the body’s ability to produce NK (Natural Killer) cells and activates White Blood Cell (Macrophage) Activity.
- Rich source of the Anti-Oxidant pigment Melanin, which is needed throughout the body. It is known to be geno-protective, protecting our DNA from damage due to oxidative-stress.
- Rich Source of the yellow polyphenol pigments, which give Chaga its deep orange colour inside. These are known to be anti-oxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-platelet aggregation, anti-diabetic and anti-dementia!
- Rich source of Selenium, Iron, Zinc, Chromium, Manganese, Copper and Magnesium. (Zinc being essential to the production of the body’s own anti-oxidant, Super Oxide Dismutase (SOD) as well as required for cell growth, differentiation and survival, not to mention male reproductive health!)
All of the above mentioned qualities make Chaga a veritable powerhouse of healing. It is one of the foremost medicines available to us to benefit health and longevity. In our times of such prevalent environmental pollution it has the potential to protect us by to building a deep immunity. The beauty of our situation is that Chaga grows plentifully in the local environs! Head into the Boreal Forest, where Birch grows plentifully, and you are sure to find some of your own medicine!
The Chaga mushroom is an archaic being which has had a profound relationship with humankind for centuries.
As Chaga gains increased popularity due to its extensive and well-documented benefits – so too there is an increase in over-harvesting and unethical ecological practices. Subsequently, it is becoming more common to cultivate the mushroom under laboratory conditions.
While cultivated Chaga certainly has many of the same benefits (and some different benefits) when compared to the wild form – and carries such an archaic and powerful life-force that may in fact supersede ”place” via mycelial networks – there is a very old, very strong and special energy that is engaged when one consumes wild Chaga.
The wild-harvested Chaga chunks and pieces currently available in the shop have been gathered in Nova Scotia and New Brusnwick by a group of dedicated, ethical collectors who, with great care, harvest Chaga with respect for the mushroom, as well as the forest ecosystem the mushroom lives in and with.