Despite the popularity, some people question the safety of reishi mushrooms. Some studies found that people taking reishi mushrooms for four months were nearly twice as likely to suffer adverse effects compared with people taking placebos. However, those effects were mild, including slightly increased risks for upset stomach or digestive discomfort.
Does Reishi Mushroom Cause Liver Toxicity?
No negative effects were reported for liver health. Other studies have also shown that taking Reishi mushrooms extract for four weeks does not cause harmful effects to the liver or kidneys in healthy adults.
In contrast to these reports, significant liver problems were reported in two case studies. Both individuals in the case studies had used reishi mushrooms before with no problems, but experienced negative effects upon switching to powdered form. This makes it hard to know definitively whether the mushrooms themselves were the cause of the liver damage seen, or whether the powdered extract was to blame due to being contaminated or for another random reason not related to the reishi itself, since they had already been taking reishi in another form previously.
It is also important to note that a lot of studies on reishi mushrooms did not report safety data, so there is generally limited information. Nonetheless, there are a few groups of people who probably should avoid reishi. These include people who are pregnant or nursing, suffer from a blood condition, are about to have surgery, or suffer from low blood pressure.
What Is Toxic Hepatitis?
Toxic Hepatitis is an inflammation of the liver that occurs as a response to some substances that you are exposed to. Toxic hepatitis may be caused by alcohol, chemicals, medications, or dietary supplements.
In some cases, toxic hepatitis develops hours to days after being exposed to the toxin. In others, it can take months of consistent exposure for signs and symptoms to develop. Symptoms of toxic hepatitis usually disappear once the toxin exposure stops. But toxic hepatitis can permanently damage your liver, leading to permanent scarring of the liver tissue (cirrhosis) and, in some cases, liver failure, which can be fatal.
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