If you are interested in alternative health, you may have heard of a little mushroom called chaga. Harvested from the most frigid regions of the northern hemisphere, chaga has been used as a folk remedy by Alaskans and Siberians for generations. Chaga has been shown to do everything from combating cancer to reducing aging through the elimination of free radicals to improving immune system health and more.
However, you may be wondering how much chaga you should take per day. While there isn’t a definite answer to this question (as your needs and physiology may differ from others), there are definite downsides to taking too much chaga in a day. Here’s how to properly use chaga, whether you’re drinking it in tea form or using a tincture.
How Much Chaga Tea or Tincture?
As a general rule, consuming too much chaga will not harm you in a significant way, at least not in the short term. This is assuming the chaga you are using is pure and of high quality. Consuming poor-quality chaga carries its own risks due to possible impurities in the mushrooms caused by dirt contamination, external air pollutants, or more. With pure chaga, however, you will have a much easier time of using the substance.
The recommended initial daily dose of chaga tea is two six-ounce cups. This is a large enough amount that you will be able to benefit from its effects, but it is also small enough for your body to handle. For chaga tinctures, since they are super-concentrated, you need a much smaller amount: two to three milliliters administered three to five times a day. Chaga tinctures can be swallowed with water or another beverage or administered sub-dermally (below the tongue) for added effect.
When it comes to chaga or any other new substance, you should always start with small doses in order to test your body’s tolerance. If your body takes too much of an unfamiliar substance, you can suffer unexpected side effects or reactions. Given that chaga is a fungi, consuming excessive amounts of it may cause stomach problems for some individuals. Once you’ve developed an idea of what your limits are, you can then begin increasing your daily dosage of chaga.
As a general rule, there is little point to consuming more than three cups of chaga tea per day. This is because three cups will give most people the maximum amount of vitamins and minerals that their bodies can handle at any one time. Any excess nutrition will be removed by the body as waste without processing any of it. While there is nothing wrong with drinking more than three cups of chaga tea per day if your body can handle it, there is not much benefit in doing so.
One documented problem with long-term chaga overconsumption is kidney issues. This is due to the fact that chaga is exceptionally rich in potassium and magnesium, both of which are removed by the kidneys and liver when there is an excess of them. Too much chaga over a long period of time may lead to kidney disease. One case of oxalate nephropathy in a 72-year-old Japanese woman with liver cancer was linked to her long-term overconsumption of chaga powder.
Another issue with overconsuming chaga is that it may have negative side effects with other substances or medications you take. This is particularly pronounced in those who suffer from diabetes and are taking medications designed to lower blood sugar, which chaga also does naturally. If you are on any medications, please consult with your doctor before taking chaga to ensure that it does not have any unintended side effects on your body.
Limiting your daily chaga dosage has another side benefit: extending the longevity of your chaga supply. Chaga is far more economical than other drinks such as coffee, with chaga chunks and powder staying fresh for months and sometimes years. Only a small amount of chaga is needed to make tea, and chaga chunks can actually be reused once to make more tea. By not overconsuming chaga, you can make the most out of your purchase.
How much chaga to take per day is not a hard and fast, universal answer for all people. Everyone’s body is different and will react to substances differently, meaning you will need to play with dosages in order to figure out what is best for you. Having said that, it is always wise to start small and slowly increase your chaga dosage over time, allowing you to gauge how your body reacts to chaga and determine your tolerance for it and similar mushrooms.
Ultimately, chaga is a miracle food that should be enjoyed responsibly. By carefully managing your chaga consumption and learning how your body works, you will be able to reap the benefits of using chaga for a long time to come.