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Lingzhi contains active compounds known as polysaccharides. These can have immune-boosting effects, such as increasing the activity of white blood cells.
In folk art, Lingzhi is often featured in images of God of Longevity. In the 16th century, Li Shizhen, a renowned herbalist, described Lingzhi as a herb that boosts longevity and has other anti-ageing effects.
Research has shown that beta-glucans, complex sugars found in Lingzhi, may stop growth and prevent the spread of cancer cells. In addition, a study indicated that combining the active components of Lingzhi and green tea may inhibit tumour growth.
Lingzhi is filled with triterpenes, a compound that gives the mushroom its bitter taste. These triterpenes may help prevent hypertension and relieve the symptoms of allergies.
In TCM, Lingzhi is used to tonify the Qi ,calm the mind and relieve cough and asthma.
Lingzhi may work against these drugs because of its potential stimulating effects on the immune system.
Compared with their fruiting body, Lingzhi spores are richer in nutrients and therapeutic properties. However, harvesting the spores is a delicate process as they are released only for 10 days when the mushroom ripens.
Braised 'Dong Bo' Pork Belly with Lingzhi & Licorice Root. To avoid an excessively bitter dish, only add the herbs at the end.
Lingzhi is known for its benefit to calm the mind, find out how to use it in a recipe.
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