This article is based on Mayo Clinic’s content.
Allergies are hypersensitive reactions triggered by a particular immune defence mechanism in response to substances that would not normally induce reactions in the majority of people.
Depending on the organ or system affected, allergies can exhibit themselves in a variety of ways. The skin and respiratory system are the two organs that are most affected by allergies, with the primary symptoms being rhinitis, conjunctivitis and asthma.
The most common allergen is pollen, but mould, dust mites and animals are also common irritants. Allergic reactions can also be triggered by foods, medications or insect bites and stings.
Our immune system is in homeostasis when there is a constant movement and exchange between the TH1 and TH2 immune pathways, as the two systems of both inhibit and complement each other.
In a skin wound, for example, the presence of foreign substances leads to the dominance of the TH2 proinflammatory pathway. The immune system can remain stuck in a TH2 dominant state when this pathway does not amend itself and return to equilibrium. Allergies and asthma are considered TH2 dominant conditions.
Do you want to know more about allergies?
We recommend that you read the Disease and Conditions page of the Mayo Clinic for public information.
Which mushrooms have useful properties for allergies?
Improves immune response, has anti-inflammatory and anti-asthmatic properties and used in development of allergies.
Results from various studies indicate that the Sun Agaricus ( also known as the Sun Mushroom) is an excellent immune modulator as it improves balance between Th1 and Th2 status. Various studies showed the capacity of this mushroom to reduce the response to antibodies when that number is too high.
Sun Mushroom can be used as a prevention to developing allergies, as well as reducing the symptoms of allergic flare-ups as the general anti-inflammatory effect.
Contains anti-inflammatory and anti-histamine properties
Reishi is the ultimate anti-inflammatory mushroom. Reishi extract contains triterpenes that have antioxidant, anti-histamine and anti-inflammatory properties, mainly having a stabilising effect on the immune system. It does so by inhibiting the secretion of histamines, as well as regulating the release of cells that increase inflammation.
The modulating function of beta-glucans is also critical to the Reishi’s ability to shift the immune system from a TH2 dominant state (proinflammatory and overactive immune response) toward a balance between TH1 and TH2.
- Hetland G, Johnson E, Lyberg T, Kvalheim G (2011) The mushroom Agaricus blazei Murill elicits medicinal effects on tumor, infection, allergy, and inflammation through its modulation of innate immunity and amelioration of Th1/Th2 imbalance and inflammation. Advances in Pharmacological Sciences, Article ID 157015.
- Kohda H, Tokumoto W, Sakamoto K, Fujii M, Hirai Y, Yamasaki K, Komoda Y, Nakamura H, Ishihara S, Uchida M (1985). The biologically active constituents of Ganoderma lucidum (Fr.) Karst histamine release-inhibitory triterpenes. Chemical and Pharmaceutical Bulletin 33, 1367-1374.
- Powell M (2006) The use of Ganoderma lucidum (Reishi) in the management of histamine-mediated allergic responses Townsend Letter. The Examiner of Alternative Medicine 274, 26-30.
- Nizhenkovska IV, Pidchenko VT, Bychkova NG, Bisko NA, Rodnichenko AY, Kozyko NO. Influence of Ganoderma lucidum (Curt.: Fr.) P. Karst. on T-cell-mediated immunity in normal and immunosuppressed mice line CBA/Ca. Ceska Slov Farm. 2015 Sep;64(4):139-43.
- Choi S, Nguyen VT, Tae N, Lee S, Ryoo S, Min BS, Lee JH. Anti-inflammatory and heme oxygenase-1 inducing activities of lanostane triterpenes isolated from mushroom Ganoderma lucidum in RAW264.7 cells. Toxicol Appl Pharmacol. 2014 Nov 1;280(3):434-42. doi: 10.1016/j.taap.2014.09.007.
- Bhardwaj N, Katyal P, Sharma AK. Suppression of inflammatory and allergic responses by pharmacologically potent fungus Ganoderma lucidum. Recent Pat Inflamm Allergy Drug Discov. 2014;8(2):104-17.
- Mizutani N, Nabe T, Shimazu M, Yoshino S, Kohno S. Effect of Ganoderma lucidum on pollen-induced biphasic nasal blockage in a guinea pig model of allergic rhinitis. Phytother Res. 2012 Mar;26(3):325-32. doi: 10.1002/ptr.3557.
- Joseph S, Sabulal B, George V, Antony KR, Janardhanan KK. Antitumor and anti-inflammatory activities of polysaccharides isolated from Ganoderma lucidum. Acta Pharm. 2011 Sep 1;61(3):335-42. doi: 10.2478/v10007-011-0030-6.
- Andoh T, Zhang Q, Yamamoto T, Tayama M, Hattori M, Tanaka K, Kuraishi Y. Inhibitory effects of the methanol extract of Ganoderma lucidum on mosquito allergy-induced itch-associated responses in mice. J Pharmacol Sci. 2010;114(3):292-7.
- Huang SQ, Ning ZX. Extraction of polysaccharide from Ganoderma lucidum and its immune enhancement activity. Int J Biol Macromol. 2010 Oct 1;47(3):336-41. doi: 10.1016/j.ijbiomac.2010.03.019. Epub 2010 Apr 4. PubMed PMID: 20371373.