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Miraculous Reishi Tea

Sunday, February 26, 2012


Since my recent move to the Bay Area, many people tell me I'm so lucky. One of the reasons is that this is "superfood heaven" and I have access to a myraid of goods that health freaks like me obsess over. Still, I didn't expect a find such as this one. I have never (that I know of) seen Reishi mushrooms before but the other day I came across some at a San Francisco health food store and screamed! I couldn't believe it. Needless to to say I couldn't leave without putting one in the basket. Reishi is known for exceptional health benefits and has been used for thousands of years in Chinese medicine. This is NOT the kind of mushroom you add to soups or stews. It is consumed as a hot water extract, or tea, and should be treated as medicine.

Health Benefits
This miraculous fungus is ever so touted for its anti-tumor activities. Like mushrooms in general it can be used to boost your immune system and both, for preventing tumor growth or the formation of cancer cells and for treating them or inhibiting their further development Reishi could come to your rescue. It's also valued for its ability to help balance blood sugar levels and lower blood pressure.

The question of course is how to get a cup of tea out of this hard, wood-like thing? A grater worked for me pretty well. It takes some work but it doesn't take much to get a teaspoon/tablespoon of it. Of course, the alternative is buying some in a sliced or powder form.

1 teaspoon ground Reishi
2-3 cups of water

Simmer it all for a few hours turning the heat on for a couple of minutes at a time while letting the mushroom steep. Whenever it starts cooling off you can give it some more heat. If you don't mind boiling it and keep simmering it, you're welcome to do that. If you are a strict raw foodie you'll want to be gentle and make sure you don't exceed ~160 F / 70 °C. Even though I eat some cooked food every now and then (and beat myself up over it) I prepared it by intermittent short simmer sessions.
You should end up with a cup of tea or so left once it's done.
Strain it and enjoy by itself or to help the somewhat bitter and strong woody, mushroom taste add some of your favorite sweetener. If you have cancer, I recommend consuming it by itself or maybe mixed with other teas but try not adding any sweeteners. Get stronger, heal faster.

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