Chaga Mushroom Extract
Often used to support cancer treatments, also manages digestive disorders and can help in some skin conditions.
Free Guide to Medicinal Mushrooms
Click on the link below to download and keep or just read our free guide to Medicinal Mushrooms written by Martin Powell especially for D. Atkinson Herbalist & Clinic:
D. Atkinson Mushroom Extracts
All of our mushroom extracts are produced for us by Martin Powell. Our products are practitioner strength and are produced to the highest standards
Martin is a biochemist and a Chinese herbalist who has worked with mushroom nutrition for over 20 years. He lectures at the University of Westminster and is the author of Medicinal Mushrooms - a Clinical Guide.
As well as running a clinical practice he continues to research mushrooms health benefits and run seminars on their clinical uses for doctors and health care professionals in the UK and World wide.
Extract from Martin's Guide to Medicinal Mushrooms:
Chaga Mushroom Extract
Main active components
Unusually among medicinal mushrooms, Chaga’s most important components are derived from the bark of the host birch trees on which it grows. Chief among these are a large number of betulinic acid derivatives and melano-glucan complexes.
Revered as a folk medicine, especially among the peoples of eastern Russia, Chaga has traditionally been boiled to make a tea, which is drunk to treat a range of conditions, including: cancers, viral and bacterial infections and gastro-intestinal disorders(1)(2).
Main Health Benefits
Betulinic acid shows wide-ranging anti-cancer activity, including against: leukaemia, malignant brain and peripheral nervous system cancers for which mushroom polysaccharide-based supplements show limited benefit3. As with other mushrooms, Chaga’s polysaccharide components also show strong immune-modulating activity and this combination of mushroom polysaccharides with host-derived betulinic acid contributes to Chaga’s traditional use in cancer treatment, including FOR: inoperable breast, lip, gastric, parotid, lung, skin, colorectal cancer and Hodgkin lymphoma(1).
Melano-glucan complexes have wide antimicrobial activity and Chaga has traditionally been used as an internal cleanser with Befungin, an alcohol extract of Chaga, licensed in Russia for the treatment of stomach and intestinal disorders(1).
Several anecdotal reports indicate benefit of Chaga for psoriasis and this is supported by a Russian study on 50 psoriasis patients, which reported a 76% cure rate, with improvement in a further 16% of cases. The same study reported that it typically took 9-12 weeks for improvement to become apparent(4).
Chaga supplements need to be made from wild-harvested Chaga if they are to contain the main active components derived from the bark of the host birch trees. Although most traditional use is based on hot-water extracts (teas), the triterpenoid betulinic acid derivatives (although not the polysaccharides) are more soluble in alcohol and for this reason tinctures or other alcohol-based extracts are sometimes used, either on their own or in combination with polysaccharide-rich hot-water extracts. Traditionally around 5g of Chaga would be ground and boiled to make a tea, while the recommended daily dose of Befungin is 1tsp, three times a day and for extracts 1-3g/day.
The information above is intended for educational use and is not meant to be used to diagnose or treat any medical condition. Anyone who is experiencing any symptoms, has been diagnosed with or suspects they may have a medical condition should contact a medical doctor or appropriately qualified health professional.
1. The Chaga Storey. Spinosa R. 2006. The Mycophile, 47:1.
2. Plants used against cancer. Hartwell JL. 1982. Quartermain Pubs: Lawrence, Mass. p.694.
3. Chemistry, biological activity, and chemotherapeutic potential of betulinic acid for the prevention and treatment of cancer and HIV infection. Cichewicz RH, Kouzi SA. Med Res Rev. 2004;24(1):90-114.
4. Treatment of Psoriasis with Using Chaga Mushroom Preparations. Dosychev EA, Bystrova VN.1973. Vestn Dermatol Venerol. May;47(5):79-83
Directions: Add 1-3g daily to food or drink as part of a balanced diet
(one level 5ml teaspoon = 2g)
Dairy, gluten and soya free.
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