Medicinal mushrooms have been used for thousands of years in ancient Eastern medicine, but over the past few months, they have been making their way to the West, and are now the latest superfood everyone wants to know about.
You may have also heard the term medicinal mushrooms interchanged with ‘adaptogen’ or ‘adaptogenic mushrooms’. To help clear up any confusion, the term adaptogen is a classification or property that a particular herb, plant or natural compound has. Plants with adaptogenic properties have been shown to help the body in a non-specific way, rather than serving a single, targeted purpose. Adaptogens are most famous for helping to resist stress in the body and support the regulation of bodily functions that stress has interfered with.
While some research has found that many of the traditional mushrooms plants have adaptogenic properties, there is still a lot of research to be done to fully understand these mysterious plants. However, the research that we do have indicates that medicinal mushrooms such as Chaga and Reishi are most therapeutically supportive in the immune and nervous system. Both aspects that health-conscious, busy mum’s feel are neglected. With so much going on in the day it can be easy to focus on yourself and often it's the mum's health that ends up unravelling. But you can’t pour from an empty cup, so it is essential that mum’s find a little bit of time each day to nourish and set themselves up for the day ahead, and this is where our mushroom powders come in. It’s important to note that medicinal mushrooms aren’t a cure-all, instead, they should be considered as little boosters for your immune system, or shields that help you offset some of that stress.
Ground mushrooms by themselves can taste a bit bitter, so they are most palatable when added to something, such as a smoothie, soup or elixir style warm drink. One of our favourite ways to enjoy the mushroom powders is added to smoothies.
This recipe not only contains the mushrooms for immune and nervous system support, but also contains antioxidants in the form of Brazil nuts and cinnamon which are essential for immune support, as well protein which is required for the production of neurotransmitters that regulate our stress levels, and enzymes that support the function of the immune system.
Chocolate Salted Caramel Smoothie with Mushrooms
Prep and Cook Time: 2 minutes
- 1 medjool date*
- 1 tbsp cacao powder*
- 1 tsp cinnamon*
- Half a banana (frozen)
- 2 brazil nuts*
- 1 serve of protein powder*
- 1/4 tsp reishi or chaga mushroom powder*
- 1/2 cup of ice (optional)
- Tiny pinch of pink salt*
- Sprinkle of cacao nibs* or dark chocolate chips,* to garnish.
Add all the ingredients to a blender and blitz until smooth. Top with some cacao nibs or dark chocolate chips.
Words by Brittany Darling, Nutritionist and Herbalist (BHSc Nutr).