Welcome to our big Chaga mushroom test 2021. Here we present all the Chaga mushroom products that we have tested in detail. We have compiled detailed background information and added a summary of customer reviews on the web.
We would like to make your purchase decision easier and help you find the best Chaga mushroom product for you.
You will also find answers to frequently asked questions in our guide. If available, we also offer interesting test videos. Furthermore, you will also find some important information on this page that you should be aware of when buying Chaga mushrooms.
- 1 Weekly newsletter with the best personal finance tips
- 2 The most important facts
- 3 The Best Chaga Mushroom: Our Picks
- 4 Guide: Questions you should ask yourself before buying Chaga mushroom
- 5 Decision: What types of Chaga mushroom products are there and which one is right for you?
- 6 Buying criteria: Use these factors to compare and evaluate Chaga mushroom products
- 7 Interesting facts about Chaga mushrooms
The most important facts
- The Chaga mushroom has been used for centuries in folk medicine as a medicinal mushroom and scientists have also researched and confirmed its effect.
- The mushroom has pain-relieving and anti-inflammatory effects and can be taken to relieve many ailments. Its effect on tumour cells of different types of cancer showed that the Chaga mushroom can inhibit their growth and possibly induce cell death.
- Chaga mushroom is quite well tolerated and there are no known side effects. However, to avoid any risks, you should always buy Chaga from a wild collection in northern regions.
The Best Chaga Mushroom: Our Picks
Guide: Questions you should ask yourself before buying Chaga mushroom
What is a Chaga mushroom and where does it come from?
It usually forms a symbiotic relationship with an old birch tree as a parasitic fungus and grows on its trunk for several years. Of course, it does not always have to be a birch, sometimes it also chooses a rowan, an alder, a maple or another tree species.
However, in order to develop its special healing properties, the Chaga mushroom always needs a birch tree. The birch tree secretes a protective agent against it, which it stores inside.
The older the Chaga gets, the more it resembles a black misshapen mass. Of course, it is not poisonous and you can even make a tea from Chaga mushroom.
What is the Chaga mushroom used for?
As early as the 12th century, its properties were used to cure diseases and relieve pain. In the meantime, many laboratory tests have been carried out, which confirmed its promising healing power.
Strengthening the immune system
Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) is also convinced that Chaga has antioxidant and antibacterial effects.
This means that it helps your body scavenge free radicals and protect itself from viruses and bacteria. This strengthens your immune system and makes you less susceptible to disease.
Hypothyroidism and Hashimoto's disease
The Chaga mushroom also works on the release of stress hormones and thus provides a pleasant balance.
This relieves symptoms of stress, which also has a positive effect on diseases of the thyroid gland. The Chaga mushroom has been shown to improve the symptoms of hypothyroidism and Hashimoto's disease in particular.
Treatment of chronic inflammations
It has also been shown to produce successful results in chronic inflammation of the pancreas.
In folk medicine, Chaga is often used for the treatment of diseases of the gastrointestinal tract as well as irritable bowel syndrome. Especially if you have a sensitive stomach by nature, the Chaga mushroom could do you good.
Treatment with Chaga mushroom for cancer
After numerous tests, researchers are convinced that Chaga mushroom inhibits the growth of cancer cells and can even induce their cell death in some cases. (1)
Studies suggest that the mushroom can have a fighting effect on colon, lung and cervical cancers. The trials also suggest that the Chaga mushroom can exert a cancer-fighting effect through four possible mechanisms:
- Antioxidation to prevent the development of cancer in the first place
- Inhibit the growth of tumour cells
- Killing tumour cells directly
- Activating the immune system to kill tumour cells (2)
Of course, more detailed research needs to be done here, as the tests have only been done on animals so far. However, the results so far have already brought a lot of hope that we have found a new remedy in the fight against cancer.
Tumour cells from breast and colon cancer were tested. Furthermore, pain-relieving properties were confirmed, which are of great importance in cancer therapy. (3)
Further positive properties
Yes, the Chaga mushroom can do even more. For example, it is not only anti-inflammatory, but also purifies the blood, lowers cholesterol levels and supports organs such as the heart, liver, spleen and lymph.
Chaga has a positive effect on your skin and makes you look younger for longer. By stimulating melanin production, the mushroom also protects your hair from premature greying.
What are the effects of the Chaga mushroom?
Its mineral content is about 15 % and consists of sodium, potassium, manganese, some calcium, iron, silicon, magnesium, chromium, copper and zinc.
Furthermore, the Chaga mushroom also contains organic acids such as formic, oxalic, acetic and vanillic acid. These are responsible for processing the minerals and are also an important component of our entire biochemical metabolism.
The work of the enzymes in your body is also positively influenced and supported by the numerous vital substances of the Chaga mushroom.
For whom is Chaga mushroom suitable?
Furthermore, you should be careful not to take it at the same time as antibiotics and you must also refrain from taking it with intravenous glucose (infusion). However, if symptoms of illness appear, you should stop taking the Chaga mushroom and see a doctor.
The Chaga mushroom is generally very well tolerated and therefore also suitable for pregnant women, children or even pets. Otherwise, don't forget that the Chaga mushroom can help you, but cannot replace a healthy diet.
How should Chaga mushroom be dosed and taken?
You should drink the tea as a cure for at least three months, preferably two cups daily. It is recommended to integrate it into your daily routine and diet.
Chaga tea is most effective on an empty stomach. So, for example, you could drink the first cup first thing in the morning, before you have breakfast. Chaga mushroom tea can also be a healthy alternative to coffee.
If you like, you can also refine dishes with the Chaga mushroom. Otherwise, you can also add some to a hot bath to nourish the skin and inhale the mushroom. To treat skin diseases in young children, 50-100 ml of Chaga tea is enough.
What alternatives are there to Chaga mushroom?
If you only have one particular problem, you may find an alternative. Of course, this depends on what exactly you want to treat and whether there is anything available.
Decision: What types of Chaga mushroom products are there and which one is right for you?
Basically, you can distinguish between two types of Chaga mushrooms:
- Wild traditional Chaga mushroom
- Cultivated Chaga Mushroom
The following sections explain the respective advantages and disadvantages of the different Chaga mushrooms.
What distinguishes wild traditional Chaga mushroom and what are its advantages and disadvantages?
The real Chaga mushroom, which also has this promising effect, always comes from a wild collection. It grows in very cold regions, where the Chaga mushroom defies temperatures of up to minus 40 degrees. Only under these conditions can it form its vital substances and develop healing powers.
Furthermore, it must grow on a birch tree and on no other tree to be medicinally valuable. When these conditions are met, the medicinal mushroom has the highest ORAC value of all natural foods. The ORAC value indicates the antioxidant activity of a food.
Antioxidants are enzymes and nutrients that protect your body from the attacks of free radicals. The higher the value, the greater the positive effect on your well-being.
Free radicals also cause so-called oxidative stress. This accelerates the ageing process in your cells and blood vessels. As a result, oxidative stress forms the basis for many health problems.
What distinguishes cultivated Chaga mushroom and what are its advantages and disadvantages?
If you have already read through the above, you now know that artificially cultivated Chaga mushroom is usually not of good quality at all. Most of them are low-quality, cheap imports from suppliers who just want to make a profit with the supposed medicinal mushroom.
Labels such as "organic" or "from Finnish/Siberian wild collection" on the product do not change anything.
These suppliers often know very little about their Chaga mushroom product and cannot give good advice because they do not consume it themselves. So if you plan to buy Chaga mushroom, better spend more money on good quality or do without it completely before you damage your health.
Buying criteria: Use these factors to compare and evaluate Chaga mushroom products
In order to buy the right Chaga mushroom product, there are some criteria to consider. The following purchase criteria should be considered before buying:
- Type of Chaga Mushroom
- Country of origin
- Tree species and age
- Age of the mushroom
- Method of harvesting
- Drying and storage
- Type of packaging during shipping
The following sections explain each of the buying criteria in more detail and show exactly what you should look for.
Type of Chaga mushroom
You should always prefer Chaga from a wild collection to be on the safe side. There are certificates for this on the homepage or you can contact the seller. Otherwise, you should always read the reviews and compare what other people have already experienced with the product.
If you are still unsure, you can research other places on the internet about the seller.
It is best to buy the Chaga mushroom in chunks, which is also in keeping with tradition. The powder often provides a target for mould and bacteria if it is poorly packaged. Cheap imports may contain substances that are harmful to health, among other things, in the powder. Tablets or capsules are also not always recommended.
Country of origin
Traditionally, the Chaga mushroom comes from very cold regions, especially Lapland. Lapland is an area in the far north of Europe that stretches across Norway, Sweden, Finland and Russia. The subpolar climate is characteristic.
Tree species and age
In order for the Chaga mushroom to actually become an effective vital mushroom, it always needs an old birch tree for symbiosis. Its age should be between 20 and 70 years, at best not too young and not too old. The fungus extracts important substances from the birch tree, which it secretes as protection against it. It also absorbs and stores the valuable birch sap.
It is also important that the Chaga mushroom grows at a height of at least one metre on the tree. It should not draw water from the soil and should not grow too close to the roots.
Age of the mushroom
The Chaga mushroom, or slate fungus, can live between 10 and 20 years. This also depends on how long it takes for the host tree to die. To be able to harvest it, it should be at least five years old.
How to harvest
The mushroom must be cut manually and never with a chainsaw or similar tools.
Drying and storage
In order to avoid mould, the Chaga mushroom must be gently dried over several days until its residual moisture is only a maximum of 15%. If you want to be absolutely sure that the mushroom will not mould, you can buy dry granules.
Type of packaging for shipping
As the mushroom could easily start to mould, make sure that it is not packed in plastic or aluminium bags. If you buy inferior quality, it is quite possible that it will arrive at your home packed in this way.
Quality is the be-all and end-all of Chaga mushrooms. Therefore, you should avoid farm products (cultivated Chaga). This also does not contain the valuable ingredients of birch, because it has been cultivated on algae. It is therefore of no value for your health. Pesticides and fertilisers are often used to make it grow faster.
When the Chaga mushroom is ground into powder after harvesting, it naturally also contains these harmful substances.
Interesting facts about Chaga mushrooms
How do you prepare a Chaga mushroom tea correctly?
You will see that the preparation is really easy.
- Take three medium sized chunks of the Chaga mushroom
- Simmer them in 500 ml of water for about 10 minutes
- Wait until the water turns a brownish colour
- Strain the tea and pour it into a cup
- It is then ready to drink
You can put the remaining chunks in a glass jar with water and then cover it and put it in the fridge. You can reuse them as often as you like until they no longer give off any colour. The water in which you store the chunks can then be used again for your next tea. Granules are also very suitable for this method. You can usually use this for up to three infusions.
You can also adjust the amount and use less pieces and water for your tea. The more water you use, the lighter the Chaga mushroom tea will be. If you want it stronger, simmer it longer or use less water.
The taste of the tea reminds many of black tea without milk and sugar. If you don't like it that way, you can mix it with other teas such as peppermint or camomile. If it is too bitter for you, you can sweeten it with a little honey.
The Finns mix their Chaga mushroom tea with coffee and drink it as "Chaga coffee". This drink has a performance-enhancing effect and the vital substances of the mushroom are absorbed even faster by the blood due to the caffeine. However, this combination is not for everyone. If you are ill, you can also add some ginger to the Chaga tea.
Picture source: 123rf.com / Aleksei Marinchenko
Satoru Arata, Jun Watanabe, Masako Maeda et al. Continuous intake of the Chaga mushroom (Inonotus obliquus) aqueous extract suppresses cancer progression and maintains body temperature in mice. Heliyon. 2016 May; 2(5): e00111.
Razumov IA, Kazachinskaia EI, Puchkova LI. [Protective activity of aqueous extracts from higher mushrooms against Herpes simplex virus type-2 on albino mice model]. Antibiot Khimioter. 2013;58(9-10):8-12.
Kang JH, Jang JE, Mishra SK et al. Ergosterol peroxide from Chaga mushroom (Inonotus obliquus) exhibits anti-cancer activity by down-regulation of the β-catenin pathway in colorectal cancer. J Ethnopharmacol. 2015 Sep 15;173:303-12.