You might know that Chaga can supercharge your health in many incredible ways, but did you know that it can also help you achieve vibrant, healthy skin? Is there anything this mushroom can’t do? This powerful fungus can truly help you glow from the inside out! Today, we’re going to discuss the benefits of using Chaga for skin health.
First things first, what exactly is Chaga?
Although it’s typically referred to as a mushroom, Chaga (Inonotus obliquus) is actually a sclerotia—a hardened mass of fungal mycelium. Chaga primarily grows on birch trees in cold climates, like those in Canada, Siberia, Scandinavia, and some parts of the United States.
Chaga doesn’t pop up from the forest floor like most mushrooms. Rather, Chaga appears on the tops of birch trees as a black, charcoal-like mass (called a conk) with a woody, orange interior. Despite its unsightly exterior, the wide-ranging health benefits of Chaga more than make up for its lack of aesthetic beauty. Chaga is packed with antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals, making it a functional fungi powerhouse. It’s been shown to support a strong immune system, provide anti-inflammatory benefits, support heart health, promote good digestion, and potentially play a role in cancer prevention, just to name a few. One interesting theory is that Chaga’s many beneficial compounds may be a result of natural adaptations by the fungus to withstand the cold, harsh climate in which it grows.
Alright, now that you’re better acquainted with the almighty Chaga are you ready to learn about the incredible skin health benefits it can offer you? Let’s get to it.
Protects your skin from sun damage
While getting a little bit of sun is good for your health, too much sun can increase your risk of skin cancer and cause visible damage. Due to its structure and composition, Chaga contains more melanin than any other natural source. Melanin is the pigment that gives your skin, hair, and eyes their color. It’s also responsible for guarding your skin against UV rays. The concentrated melanin in Chaga’s dark charcoal color protects it from harmful UV rays in nature. When you consume Chaga, you get those same protective benefits. Essentially, Chaga is like an internal sunscreen, protecting your skin from the inside out.
Promotes skin cell regeneration and skin elasticity
Due to its high content of betulinic acid, Chaga promotes skin cell regeneration, a process crucial for the healing of wounds and scars. Betulinic acid also stimulates collagen and elastin production—two proteins found in your skin’s connective tissues that support its structure and ability to stretch. The reduced production of these two proteins naturally leads to wrinkles and sagging skin. Consuming Chaga can aid in the restoration and regeneration of skin cells and promote better skin elasticity, effectively helping your skin look more youthful, firm, and supple.
Provides anti-aging support
Chaga contains more superoxide dismutase (SOD) than any other natural source. SOD is the most powerful antioxidant enzyme in the body and is crucial to cellular health. It’s the first line of defense against free radicals (unstable atoms that cause premature aging). SOD is like your home alarm system, sending out an alert when intruders (free radicals) break in. At the first sign of free radicals, SOD sounds the alarm and employs free radical-destroying antioxidants like vitamin C and glutathione. SOD can both prevent and repair visible signs of aging like hyperpigmentation. SOD production significantly declines with age, but thankfully Chaga can provide the SOD that your body is lacking.
Find a trusted source for your Chaga
Purchasing Chaga mushroom from a trusted supplier is the best way to ensure its effectiveness and safety. Not all Chaga products are created equal so be sure you’re getting yours from a company whose Chaga is organically grown, sustainably harvested, carefully extracted, and tested for quality and contaminants, such as heavy metals, pesticides, microbial contamination, and gluten. If a Chaga supplement lists any ingredients like “mycelium on grain” or other funky fillers, it's best to avoid it. To reap the full potential of this fungal powerhouse, seek a Chaga extract that uses wild-harvested Chaga. As with any supplement, get permission from your doctor before consuming Chaga.
The bottom line
With the highest concentrations of some of the most supportive compounds for skin health, using Chaga for skin health is an absolute must. Chaga nourishes from the inside out, helping to promote healthy, youthful-looking skin. Be prepared for people to ask for your skin care secrets. After seeing your results, no doubt, they’ll be jumping on the Chaga bandwagon, too!
All referenced sources are linked in the blog.