The Benefits of Drinking Mushroom Tea
With more and more people looking for healthful alternatives to coffee, mushroom tea (available at various health food stores and easy to make at home) is an increasingly viable option. Mushrooms are adaptogens that help your body manage stress– work, travelling, or just the general anxieties of life. As such, mushroom tea, which can also help balance the immune system, often has the opposite effect of coffee: it energizes your body without stimulating it. Mushroom tea actually calms you down while waking you up.
Many popular immune-boosting mushrooms like chaga, reishi, turkey tail, and cordyceps require heat to make their most active phytonutrients bioavailable to the human body (this is why you’ll frequently hear herbalists say that taking chaga for its healing benefits is pointless unless you cook it).
To brew mushroom tea, simply simmer 1 to 2 oz of dried mushrooms (chaga, turkey tail, reishi, etc) with an equal amount of tulsi (black tea, which has a slight caffeine kick for those who need that, otherwise use an herbal tea of choice) in water for ~15 to 20 minutes. Cool to an acceptable temperature and then add sweetener (if desired) or sip for all-day energy.
Reishi mushroom, which is frequently available in powdered supplement form, can help regulate hormones, lower stress, and break down stress-related cortisol (a fat-producing hormone in the body that is often secreted in response to stress). Chaga, as previously mentioned, is high in antioxidants that help combat disease; turkey tail is used to restore muscular vitality and improve liver function; and cordyceps is used as a tonic for energy, libido, sleeping, and longevity. Any of these mushrooms can be brewed in conjunction with one another for maximum health benefits, but choosing which one works well for you is entirely up to the individual (just start slowly– as with any new supplement, it’s best to ensure that you don’t have any sensitivities before diving head-on into a new wellness routine, and when in doubt, consult your doctor– especially if you are taking over-the-counter prescriptions).
Drinking mushroom tea is an excellent way to energize, revitalize, and detox from weeks of rich holiday food and stress. Simply brew, sip, and enjoy!
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