Elevated blood pressure or hypertension is a common condition with several long-term consequences, including heart disease. According to research, common factors that lead to hypertension are a diet high in salt and fat (cholesterol), family history, and chronic diseases like diabetes which often causes constant high blood sugar levels.
Changes in diet and leading an active lifestyle are some natural ways your doctor will advise you to use to lower your blood pressure. However, sometimes controlling your salt intake and exercise may not give you the desired effects on your blood pressure levels. Before you are on the verge of starting anti-hypertensive medications, you may want to make sure you have explored all other natural options. So what’s next?
Several dietary mushrooms are known to have blood-pressure-lowering effects. The bioactive compounds present in mushrooms—specifically those that grow on birch trees—have been used in alternative and complementary medicine as a therapy for high blood pressure(1).
Many people consume medicinal mushrooms as a natural way to reduce blood pressure. However, people who have never used natural foods to improve their health may want to know, does Chaga lower blood pressure?
Chaga mushrooms or Inonotus obliquus have been crowned as the king in the world of medicinal mushrooms for their many health benefits. Appearance-wise, they resemble a dark clump of dirt rather than a mushroom. The only distinguishing factor is their orange core.
Alternative health advocates, researchers, and even doctors are increasingly interested in the promising Chaga mushroom benefits.
Does Chaga affect blood pressure? Is Chaga good for blood pressure? Or can you take Chaga if you have high blood pressure? These are some common questions mushroom lovers keep asking around.
So what is the relationship between Chaga and blood pressure? In this detailed guide, we will help you discover all the blood pressure Chaga benefits.
Does Chaga Lower Blood Pressure?
The information in almost any research article confirms that the Chaga mushroom is a nutrient-dense superfood. It is rich in antioxidants, with an ORAC value(2) of over 146700.
The Oxygen Radical Absorbancy Capacity determines the total antioxidant capacity of food, and Chaga is a powerhouse of antioxidants. When discussing Chaga blood pressure benefits, these Chaga's health benefits play a key role.
Oxidative stress is the disturbance in the balance between reactive oxygen species (or free radicals) and the ability of the body to detox these reactive products. Superoxide dismutase(3) is one such enzyme that makes up the antioxidant defensive system in the body.
The pathogenesis of hypertension is linked with oxidative stress. When it comes to the relationship between Chaga and blood pressure, Chaga's ability to fight oxidative stress is one of the reasons why the fungi are so effective in dealing with the lifestyle health condition.
Studies(4) have reported that in people with newly diagnosed hypertension, or people with high blood pressure that are not under any anti-hypertensive medication, there is a reduction in the levels of Superoxide dismutase.
Alternative medicine has shown keen interest(5) in identifying naturally-occurring antioxidants for the prevention and treatment of hypertension. Let’s now move on to does Chaga effect blood pressure? Below, we will answer the question "is Chaga good for high blood pressure?"
How Is Chaga Good For High Blood Pressure?
Chaga's blood pressure lowering effects have been utilized in folk medicine(6). Chaga mushroom exerts anti-oxidant effects on the molecular mechanism involved in oxidative state and vascular functions. The polysaccharides and phenols present in Chaga can help reduce blood pressure and also decrease the risk of developing hypertension.
Inflammation and high blood pressure go hand in hand. Inflammatory markers like C-reactive proteins (CRP) have the strongest association with elevated blood pressure.
Numerous clinical trials have demonstrated the link between high levels of CRP and high blood pressure(7). Many people with hypertension also have elevated levels of cytokines(8). This is a vital pro-inflammatory protein that regulates the immune system and triggers inflammation.
Hypertension is also linked with high blood cholesterol levels. High cholesterol levels lead to a buildup of layers of fat on the insides of the blood vessels. The cholesterol levels also damage the endothelial lining of the vessels. These lead to the hardening and narrowing of the lumen of the blood vessels, which leads to a rise in blood pressure levels.
The Chaga extract has blood cholesterol-lowering effects. An eight-week study(11) was conducted on experimental subjects who were asked to use the Chaga mushroom extract—this study proved that Chaga has the ability to reduce total cholesterol, bad cholesterol (or LDL), and triglyceride. The same Chaga mushroom powderstudy also reported an increase in the antioxidant levels.
Another study(12) observed that in addition to lowering the bad cholesterol, Chaga mushroom also increased the levels of good cholesterol.
For people trying to figure out the answer to the question "does Chaga affect blood pressure in more than one way?" the answer is that Chaga plant extract treats blood pressure problems in multiple ways. For example, the Chaga high blood pressure-lowering effect is also linked to Nitric Oxide (NO).
The polysaccharide of the birch tree fungus has been shown to increase(13) the production of NO. This molecule is produced by many cells of the human body and is very important for vascular health. The Nitric Oxide produced after enjoying wild Chaga tea relaxes the muscles of the blood vessels which causes the vessels to widen. Through this simple process, consuming foods that have Chaga in them increases the blood flow and lowers blood pressure.
How To Take Chaga To Lower Blood Pressure?
If you are wondering does Chaga effect blood pressure balance, you should know that the mushroom offers a very effective way of lowering high blood pressure. Chaga mushroom is frequently consumed in the form of tea, supplement, and powder.
If you are thinking of enjoying Chaga tea high blood pressure benefits, you can simmer one tablespoon of Chaga tea in four to six cups of filtered water. After about 20 minutes, you can remove the tea from the heat. Strain the tea and enjoy it. You can even add a sweetener of your choice. Chaga high blood pressure tea is an excellent way to take the medicinal mushroom.
If you were wondering is Chaga good for blood pressure, this article should answer your question. Chaga mushroom has a wide array of health benefits. The antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and cholesterol-lowering properties of the mushroom help in reducing your blood pressure. Go ahead and enjoy a cup of fresh mushroom tea to see the Chaga blood pressure relationship for yourself.
- Mohamed Yahaya, N. F., Rahman, M. A., & Abdullah, N. (2014). Therapeutic potential of mushrooms in preventing and ameliorating hypertension.Trends in Food Science & Technology,39(2), 104–115. (1) https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tifs.2014.06.002
- Sharpe, E., Farragher-Gnadt, A. P., Igbanugo, M., Huber, T., Michelotti, J. C., Milenkowic, A., Ludlam, S., Walker, M., Hanes, D., Bradley, R., & Bou-Abdallah, F. (2021). Comparison of antioxidant activity and extraction techniques for commercially and laboratory prepared extracts from six mushroom species.Journal of Agriculture and Food Research,4, 100130. (2) https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jafr.2021.100130
- Pizzino, G., Irrera, N., Cucinotta, M., Pallio, G., Mannino, F., Arcoraci, V., Squadrito, F., Altavilla, D., & Bitto, A. (2017). Oxidative Stress: Harms and Benefits for Human Health.Oxidative medicine and cellular longevity,2017, 8416763. (3) https://doi.org/10.1155/2017/8416763
- Baradaran, A., Nasri, H., & Rafieian-Kopaei, M. (2014). Oxidative stress and hypertension: Possibility of hypertension therapy with antioxidants.Journal of research in medical sciences : the official journal of Isfahan University of Medical Sciences,19(4), 358–367. (4) https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4115353/
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- Peng, A., Liu, S., Fang, L., Zhu, Z., Zhou, Y., Yue, S., Ma, Z., Liu, X., Xue, S., Qiu, Y., & Qi, R. (2022). Inonotus obliquus and its bioactive compounds alleviate non-alcoholic fatty liver disease via regulating FXR/SHP/SREBP-1c axis.European Journal of Pharmacology,921, 174841. (6) https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ejphar.2022.174841
- Bautista, L. E., Atwood, J. E., O’Malley, P. G., & Taylor, A. J. (2004). Association between C-reactive protein and hypertension in healthy middle-aged men and women.Coronary Artery Disease,15(6), 331–336. (7) https://journals.lww.com/coronary-artery/Abstract/2004/09000/Association_between_C_reactive_protein_and.6.aspx
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- Kim Y. R. (2005). Immunomodulatory Activity of the Water Extract from Medicinal Mushroom Inonotus obliquus.Mycobiology,33(3), 158–162. (9) https://doi.org/10.4489/MYCO.2005.33.3.158
- Choi, S. Y., Hur, S. J., An, C. S., Jeon, Y. H., Jeoung, Y. J., Bak, J. P., & Lim, B. O. (2010, March 10).Anti-Inflammatory Effects of Inonotus obliquus in Colitis Induced by Dextran Sodium Sulfate. Journal of Biomedicine and Biotechnology. (10) https://www.hindawi.com/journals/bmri/2010/943516/
- Liang, L., Zhang, Z., Sun, W., & Wang, Y. (2009, October 1).Effect of the Inonotus Obliquus Polysaccharides on Blood Lipid Metabolism and Oxidative Stress of Rats Fed High-Fat Diet In Vivo. IEEE Xplore. (11) https://doi.org/10.1109/BMEI.2009.5305591
- Sun, J.-E., Ao, Z.-H., Lu, Z.-M., Xu, H.-Y., Zhang, X.-M., Dou, W.-F., & Xu, Z.-H. (2008). Antihyperglycemic and antilipidperoxidative effects of dry matter of culture broth of Inonotus obliquus in submerged culture on normal and alloxan-diabetes mice.Journal of Ethnopharmacology,118(1), 7–13. (12) https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jep.2008.02.030
- Lu, Y., Jia, Y., Xue, Z., Li, N., Liu, J., & Chen, H. (2021). Recent Developments inInonotus obliquus (Chaga mushroom) Polysaccharides: Isolation, Structural Characteristics, Biological Activities and Application.Polymers,13(9), 1441. (13) https://doi.org/10.3390/polym13091441