Mushroom tea has been gaining popularity in recent years due to its purported health benefits.
This tea is not made from the regular tea leaves we are accustomed to but rather from adaptogenic mushrooms such as chaga, reishi, and lion’s mane.
These mushrooms are renowned for their ability to help the body adapt to stress and promote overall well-being. So not only does it taste delicious, but it’s also good for you!
In this blog, we will take a closer look at mushroom tea, including:
- The health benefits of mushroom tea.
- How to make mushroom tea.
- How long it takes for the effects of mushroom tea to kick in?
Whether you are a tea lover or simply looking for a new way to improve your overall well-being, read on to discover the wonders of mushroom tea.
In this guide:
What is mushroom tea?
Before we begin, let’s review what mushroom tea actually is.
Mushroom tea is a drink made from any type of mushroom steeped in hot water. The most common types of mushrooms used in mushroom tea include Chaga, Reishi, Lion’s Mane, and Cordyceps mushrooms.
Chaga mushroom tea
Chaga mushroom tea is a herbal tea made from Chaga mushroom or Inonotus obliquus. This is a type of fungi that grows on birch trees in cold climates such as Russia, Korea, and Canada.
Chaga mushrooms are known for their antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. It may also help lower blood sugar levels, reduce cholesterol, and improve overall health and well-being.
Reishi mushroom tea
Many people consider Reishi mushroom tea the healthiest mushroom drink there is. This is because of Reishi’s high concentration of vitamins, nutrients, and antioxidants.
Reishi mushrooms can be found growing on dead or dying hardwood trees and stumps, usually between the months of May-November in warmer temperate regions, such as Asia, Australia, and South America.
Lion’s Mane mushroom tea
As you can probably tell, Lion’s Mane mushroom tea is made from Lion’s Mane mushrooms.
This mushroom is known by several names, including Old Man’s Beard and Tree Hedgehog. However, its scientific name is Hericum Erinaceus.
Like Reishi mushrooms, Lion’s Mane grows on dead and decaying trees, generally in Asia, North America, and Europe.
Lion’s Mane mushroom tea can provide many potential health benefits, including cognitive function improvement, nerve regeneration, and immune system support.
Cordyceps mushroom tea
Cordyceps mushroom tea is made from Cordyceps mushrooms steeped in hot water.
Cordyceps are a rare combination of a caterpillar and fungus and are parasitic. They are typically found at high altitudes in regions of China, Nepal, and Tibet.
These mushrooms are believed to have medicinal properties and have been used in traditional medicine for centuries. They are known to contain compounds such as beta-glucans, polysaccharides, and triterpenoids.
Some potential health benefits of Cordyceps mushroom tea include increasing energy levels, improving athletic performance, and boosting the immune system.
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What are the health benefits of mushroom tea?
The benefits of mushroom tea differ depending on which mushroom it is made from. Let’s take a look at a few of those benefits.
Mushroom tea improves respiratory health
Some mushrooms are believed to have beneficial effects on respiratory health, potentially reducing the severity of asthma, allergies, and other respiratory conditions.
Reishi mushrooms, for example, have been shown to have anti-inflammatory effects and may help reduce asthma symptoms and allergies. They contain triterpenes, compounds that can help reduce inflammation in the respiratory system, potentially improving breathing function and reducing the severity of respiratory symptoms.
Cordyceps mushrooms have also been shown to have potential benefits for respiratory health. They contain cordycepin, a compound that may help improve lung function and reduce inflammation in the airways, making it potentially useful for conditions like bronchitis and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
Mushroom tea supports athletic performance
Some mushroom teas, like those made from Cordyceps, are believed to help boost energy levels and improve athletic performance.
This was proved in a study of 20 people, where each subject was given three 333 milligrams (mg) mushroom capsules daily.
The result? Subjects that consumed the mushroom extract were able to exercise more heavily than people who did not.
Mushroom tea aids blood sugar control
A 2018 study published by the Journal of Functional Foods found that mushroom extracts may assist in regulating blood sugar levels in the liver and improve the gut bacteria of mice.
These include mushrooms such as Maitake, Reishi, and Chaga, which have been shown to help regulate blood sugar levels, making them potentially beneficial for those with diabetes or at risk for developing diabetes.
Mushroom tea supports gut health
Another great benefit of mushroom tea is that it can support gut health when infused with mushrooms like Chaga and Turkey Tail.
This is because these mushrooms contain prebiotics that helps overall digestive health through means such as
- Feeding beneficial gut bacteria
- Improving gut barrier function
- Reducing inflammation
- Regulating digestion
How do I make mushroom tea?
Making mushroom tea is super easy and can be done at home. It only includes a few simple steps that you can follow to make tea with any type of mushroom.
Mushroom tea ingredients
To make mushroom tea, you would need the following ingredients:
- 1-2 grams of dried mushrooms of your choice per cup of tea (you can adjust this amount based on personal preference)
- 2 cups of water
- Optional extras such as lemon juice, honey or other sweeteners of your choice
Mushroom tea equipment
For pieces of equipment, you would need:
- A pot
- A sharp knife or scissors
- A fine mesh strainer or cheesecloth
Instructions for making mushroom tea
Once you have your ingredients and equipment ready, follow these instructions to brew your mushroom tea.
- Cut your mushroom of choice into tiny pieces with your knife or scissors. You can also use a pre-ground mushroom of your choice.
- Bring 2 cups of water to a boil in a pot.
- Add your mushroom pieces to the pot of boiling water. Reduce the heat to low and let it simmer for at least 20-30 minutes or up to 4 hours for a more potent brew.
- After simmering, remove the pot from the heat and let the tea cool for a few minutes.
- Strain the liquid through a fine mesh strainer or cheesecloth to remove any small pieces of mushrooms. You can discard the leftover mushroom or reuse it for another batch of tea.
- Optionally you can add lemon juice, honey or other sweeteners to taste.
- Sit back and enjoy!
Because of the extremely versatile nature of mushroom tea, there is an endless amount of possibilities and flavours to try, so feel free to get creative with your mushroom tea recipe.
How long does mushroom tea last?
Like most teas, you should consume mushroom tea immediately after brewing for optimal flavour and potency.
However, if you have leftover mushroom tea, you can store it in the refrigerator for up to 2-3 days in a tightly sealed container.
After this time frame, the tea may start to lose its potency and should be discarded. If you have any doubts about the safety or freshness of your mushroom tea, it’s always best to err on the side of caution and get rid of it.
How long does mushroom tea take to kick in?
The amount of time it takes for mushroom tea to kick in varies depending on several factors, including the type of mushroom used, the dosage, and your metabolism.
That said, it can take between 20 minutes to 2 hours for the effects of mushroom tea to kick in. Some people may experience the effects sooner, while others may take longer to feel the effects.
It’s important to note that mushroom teas, depending on the type of mushroom used, can have varying potency levels and should be consumed in moderation. So, if you are new to mushrooms, it’s best to start with a low dose and gradually increase it to avoid unwanted side effects.
If you’re unsure about the type of mushroom you’re using or the dosage, it’s best to consult with a healthcare professional first.
In summary, mushroom tea is a healthy and delicious way to gain the numerous health benefits that mushrooms offer.
Mushroom tea contains compounds such as beta-glucans, polysaccharides, and triterpenoids with anti-inflammatory, immune-boosting, and antioxidant properties.
By consuming mushroom tea, you can support your respiratory health, regulate your blood sugar levels, improve your athletic performance, and support your gut health, among other benefits.
The best part is making mushroom tea is easy, allowing you to enjoy the medicinal properties of mushrooms in the comfort of your home.
Frequently asked questions:
Yes, you can. However, it is recommended to limit the consumption of mushroom tea to on to two cups per day, as excessive intake may lead to adverse effects.
The healthiest mushroom tea would depend on the specific health benefits you are looking for, such as Reishi tea for immune support, Chaga tea for antioxidants and Lion’s Mane for brain function.