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How Chaga May Help in Fighting Cancer

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Maria Hrefna Hjalmarsdottir Ringdal
Maria Hrefna Hjalmarsdottir Ringdalhttps://herb-woman.com
I live on a small farm in Rogaland, where I tend to my garden following permaculture principles, which suits me perfectly as a herbalist. My garden thrives with plants that most gardens unfortunately lack. I graduated as a herbalist in the fall of 2023. Unfortunately, I have recently been diagnosed with cancer, leiomyosarcoma. This makes life a bit challenging for me these days (March 2024), and I expect to undergo surgery and chemotherapy, with uncertain prospects for the future. I have otherwise been more or less sick for about 19 years, which led me to become a herbalist. I have consulted countless doctors, often hitting a wall and not receiving help or being heard. However, this does not apply to all doctors I have seen, but a significant portion, which surprises me. This drives me to help those struggling with health issues. If I can contribute to someone feeling better, then I have gained a lot from life.Please reach out if you believe I can assist you through my studies in herbal medicine. I have less time now as I undergo cancer treatment, but I hope to become more available over time. Regardless, feel free to contact me if you wish. ... And yes, I am originally from Iceland and have backgrounds in marketing, IT, skincare therapy, viticulture, aquaculture, and most recently regenerative agriculture. I never stop educating myself; it's as important as breathing.

Chaga Mushroom (Inonotus obliquus) has been studied for its potential anti-cancer properties due to its high content of antioxidants, polysaccharides, and other bioactive compounds. Some research suggests it may help:

  • Reduce Oxidative Stress: Its antioxidants can neutralize free radicals, reducing cellular damage.
  • Immune Support: Polysaccharides in Chaga may enhance the immune system’s ability to fight cancer cells.
  • Anti-inflammatory Effects: It may reduce inflammation, which is linked to cancer progression.
  • Inhibit Cancer Cell Growth: Some studies indicate that Chaga extracts can inhibit the growth of certain cancer cells.

How to Use Chaga

  1. Chaga Tea:
  • Ingredients: Dried Chaga chunks or powder.
  • Preparation: Simmer Chaga in water for 30-60 minutes, strain, and drink.
  1. Chaga Tincture:
  • Ingredients: Dried Chaga, alcohol (like vodka).
  • Preparation: Soak Chaga in alcohol for several weeks, strain, and use a few drops in water or juice.
  1. Chaga Supplements: Available in capsule or powder form. Follow the dosage instructions on the package.

I have read that Chaga is better used with both water and alcohol soluble extracts as the alcohol does extract different constituents than water solution does, hence I would recommend using this alternative:

Creating Water and Alcohol Soluble Chaga Extract

Materials Needed:

  • Dried Chaga chunks or powder
  • Water
  • High-proof alcohol (like vodka or grain alcohol)
  • Large pot
  • Glass jars
  • Fine strainer or cheesecloth

Instructions:

  1. Water Extraction:
  • Step 1: Simmer Chaga chunks or powder in water for several hours (6-8 hours) at a low temperature (avoid boiling).
  • Step 2: Strain the liquid through a fine strainer or cheesecloth and store the liquid in a glass jar.
  1. Alcohol Extraction:
  • Step 1: Place the strained Chaga material (used in the water extraction) into a clean glass jar.
  • Step 2: Cover the Chaga with alcohol (2:1 alcohol to Chaga ratio) and seal the jar.
  • Step 3: Let it sit in a dark, cool place for at least 6 weeks, shaking the jar occasionally.
  1. Combine Extracts:
  • Step 1: Strain the alcohol extract through a fine strainer or cheesecloth.
  • Step 2: Mix the water extract and alcohol extract together. The final ratio should be around 50% water extract and 50% alcohol extract.

Usage and Storage:

  • Store the combined extract in dark glass bottles.
  • Use a few drops to a teaspoon daily, mixed in water, tea, or juice.
  • Keep the extract in a cool, dark place for up to a year.

Where can Chaga be found?

Chaga mushrooms (Inonotus obliquus) are primarily found in cold climates, growing on birch trees. Here are some key locations where Chaga can be found:

  1. Northern Hemisphere: Primarily in regions with cold climates.
  2. Russia: Especially in Siberia.
  3. Canada: Found in boreal forests.
  4. Northern Europe: Including countries like Finland and Sweden.
  5. Northern United States: Particularly in the northern parts of states like Maine, Alaska, and Minnesota.

Chaga appears as a dark, crusty growth on the outside of birch trees.

Safety Note:

Consult with a healthcare provider before adding Chaga to your regimen, especially if undergoing cancer treatment, as it can interact with medications and may not be suitable for everyone.

Further Reading

For more information on the potential benefits and usage of Chaga, refer to research studies and reliable health sources.

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