Chaga Mushroom or Inonotus Obliquus is a breed of mushrooms that grow on birch trees in the cold climatic conditions of the Northern Hemisphere. The appearance of this type of mushroom has been a subject of discussion because at a glance it does not look like mushrooms and are not appealing to the eyes. Beyond the looks, this mushroom has been popular for its health benefits for centuries and usually stands recommended for a variety of health conditions.
Health Benefits of Chaga Mushrooms
There are numerous health benefits of Chaga Mushrooms. Even though this study will focus more on the positive effects of Chaga mushroom on the skin, it is important to briefly look at a few other benefits of the mushroom.
- Boosts the Immune System
Chaga contains Beta D-Glucans which helps in the balance of the body’s immune support system. This can work in one of two ways. It can support the immune system when it is weak or can slow it down when it overreacts.
- Cure for Ulcers and Gastritis
Most ulcers are caused by bacteria known as helicobacter pylori and by boosting the immune system, Chaga can help the body rid itself of these bacteria. Chaga has also been known to provide soothing sensations to ulcer patients.
- Normalizes Blood Pressure and Reduces Cholesterol Levels
Research has backed up the notion that Chaga contains betulinic acid which breaks down the bad cholesterol – LDL in the bloodstream. This helps in the normalization of blood pressure as well.
- Boosts Skin Health
Chaga’s distinctive dark colour is obtained from its very high melanin content. Melanin, a well-known effective anti-oxidant, helps to protect the DNA and genes. Also because melanin is the main pigment in the human skin, experts have proven that the melanin content in Chaga can enhance the health of the skin and cause it to glow and be supple. Melanin is also known to protect the skin and the hair on it from damage from sunlight and helps wipe out spots arising from old age.
How Melanin Helps the Skin
Melanin is the pigment that gives the human skin, hair and eyes their peculiar colour. A Study in the International Journal of medicinal Mushrooms showed that melanin produced by Chaga mushrooms copper ions, pyrocathecol and thyrosine that stimulated the process of skin regeneration. It further showed that the pigment had properties in measured quantities that had antioxidants and genoprotective effects. This makes melanin capable of enhancing the appearance of the hair, skin and eyes and gives a general youthful appearance.
Skin colour or colouration is determined by the amount of melanin in the skin. Without melanin, the skin would appear pale and white showing shades of pink to reflect blood flow through the skin. This is what happens to people with albinism who have little or no melanin in their skins. Melanin is produced by specialized cells in the skin known as melanocytes scattered among the cells in the top layer of the skin. When melanin is produced by the cells, it spreads to nearby cells of the skin.
Sunlight is a common phenomenon that has damaging effects on the pigmentation of the skin. Chaga mushrooms provide additional supply of melanin which protects the cells from getting damaged and ensures that the skin texture and quality are enhanced.
Chaga mushrooms have many health benefits. One of them is the supply of melanin to the body to boost the quality of the skin. This is what you should go for if you desire a great skin.