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Reishi is a mushroom that grows on trees. It has been used to improve heart and brain health. Reishi has also been used to promote general wellness and help the body fight cancer. It can be taken as a pill, powder, or extract. The mushroom can also be cooked and eaten. It can also be made into a tea.


There are no advised doses for reishi.

What Research Shows

May Be Effective

  • Neurasthenia —may ease symptoms E1

Not Enough Data to Assess

  • Cancer Treatment A1
  • Diabetes B1, B2
  • High blood pressure C1
  • Lower urinary tract symptoms D1
  • Rheumatoid arthritis F1

Editorial process and description of evidence categories can be found at EBSCO NAT Editorial Process.

Safety Notes

It may be safe to take reishi in small doses for a short time. Reishi taken as a powder may damage the liver. Not enough studies have been done to say whether it is safe to use for a long period. It is also not known whether it is safe to take by women who are pregnant or breastfeeding.G1


Talk to your doctor about any supplements or therapy you would like to use. Some can interfere with treatment or make conditions worse.



A. Cancer Treatment

A1. Jin X, Ruiz Beguerie J, et al. Ganoderma lucidum (Reishi mushroom) for cancer treatment. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2016;4:CD007731.

B. Diabetes

B1. Klupp NL, Chang D, et al. Ganoderma lucidum mushroom for the treatment of cardiovascular risk factors. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2015;(2):CD007259.

B2. Klupp NL, Kiat H, et al. A double-blind, randomised, placebo-controlled trial of Ganoderma lucidum for the treatment of cardiovascular risk factors of metabolic syndrome. Sci Rep. 2016 Aug 11;6:29540.

C. High Blood Pressure

C1. Chu TT, Benzie IF, et al. Study of potential cardioprotective effects of Ganoderma lucidum (Lingzhi): results of a controlled human intervention trial. Br J Nutr. 2012 Apr;107(7):1017-1027.

D. Lower Urinary Tract Symptoms

D1. Noguchi M, Kakuma T, et al. Randomized clinical trial of an ethanol extract of Ganoderma lucidum in men with lower urinary tract symptoms. Asian J Androl. 2008 Sep;10(5):777-85. Epub 2007 Dec 20.

E. Neurasthenia

E1. Tang W, Gao Y, et al. A randomized, double-blind and placebo-controlled study of a Ganoderma lucidum polysaccharide extract in neurasthenia. J Med Food. 2005 Spring;8(1):53-58.

F. Rheumatoid Arthritis

F1. Li EK, Tam LS, et al. Safety and efficacy of Ganoderma lucidum (lingzhi) and San Miao San supplementation in patients with rheumatoid arthritis: a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled pilot trial. Arthritis Rheum. 2007 Oct 15;57(7):1143-1150.

G. Safety

G1. Wanmuang H, Leopairut J, et al. Fatal fulminant hepatitis associated with Ganoderma lucidum (Lingzhi) mushroom powder. J Med Assoc Thai. 2007 Jan;90(1):179-181.

Last reviewed July 2019 by EBSCO NAT Review Board Eric Hurwitz, DC  Last Updated: 3/30/2020