Chaga mushrooms have only recently started to gain popularity in the western word, but have been used for hundreds of years in Siberia and Asia. These amazing mushrooms grow on hardwood trees, primarily birch, in the forests of northern Europe, Russia, Asia, Canada, and the northeastern United States. They usually grows as a conical or oblong black charcoal looking protrusion from the bark which contributes to its nickname “black gold”
Chaga has a naturally occurring vanillin, the same as found in the vanilla bean. Therefore, it has a slight hint of vanilla flavor when used and doesn’t taste like a regular mushroom. It has long been used as a tea but more recently gaining popularity to make mushroom lattes.
High levels of antioxidants:
Antioxidants are nature’s anti ageing ingredients. Our body ages because of “free radicals” that damage our cells, and antioxidants limit the damage caused (find our more here). Chaga has one of the highest ORAC (Oxygen Radical Absorbent Capacity) scores of any food. The higher the ORAC score the better a food’s ability to protect the body.
Aside from the healing antioxidants, Chaga contains Beta-Glucans which help balance the response of the body’s immune system, helping your immunity be ready when needed but not over stimulating it. Chaga is also being researched for it’s antiviral properties.
Adaptogens are herbal components that control the adrenal system of the body. They manage how the body react to anxiety and stressful situations and although this is not an instant effect, using adaptogenic supplements such as Chaga may help reduce the long term effects of stress and how you cope with these situations .
Chaga Mushroom Latte:
1 cup milk of choice nut or dairy milk
2 cups water
1 tbsp Chaga Mushroom Powder
1 tsp Yogi Tea Classic or Choco Chai loose tea
1/2 tsp honey or maple syrup to taste
- Put the water, milk, yogi tea and mushroom into a small pan.
- Heat gently for about 10 minutes until hot.
- Add honey or syrup
- Strain into a favourite mug and enjoy
Recipe adapted from: louiseinnes.com