If you are reading this article, you are no doubt interested in chaga. This wondrous mushroom grows across much of the Northern Hemisphere and has been used as a folk remedy by native Alaskans and Siberians for generations due to its restorative properties, helping combat disease, ease digestive problems, prevent cancer, and much more. Because of chaga’s effects, it has many potential side effects on the human body, and because of this, some people are curious about how it interacts with blood thinners.
The answer is that while there is a lack of definitive evidence, habitual users of blood thinners may want to be careful with using chaga, as there is still much about it that we don’t know. Read on to learn about how chaga and blood thinners work together.
Chaga and Blood Thinners
Blood-thinning drugs such as aspirin are commonly used by many people for their beneficial effects. Aspirin is often used to cure headaches or other persistent bodily pains, and part of how it does this is by thinning the blood, making it circulate more rapidly and decreasing the risk of clotting. Studies have shown that aspirin usage can reduce the risk of blood clots, a common cause of strokes and heart attacks in many people.
However, blood thinners have the side effect of making cuts and scrapes more dangerous, as they slow the coagulation of the blood and make it difficult for wounds to heal. Excessive use of aspirin and other blood thinners can increase the chance of bodily infections and make cuts potentially life threatening. It is for this reason that surgeons advise patients to avoid consuming aspirin and other blood-thinning drugs for several days or weeks prior to an operation.
Chaga’s effects when combined with blood thinners are not fully understood, but it is possible that the two have synergistic effects. Chaga is full of anti-aggregant substances such as polysaccharides and minerals that thin the blood and have a positive effect on circulation. In particular, chaga is effective at reducing “bad” cholesterol, which can build up in the blood vessels and cause reduced blood flow, heart attacks, and strokes.
However, chaga’s anti-aggregant properties pose an issue when it comes to clotting. Due to chaga’s blood thinning characteristics, using it may cause cuts and scrapes to heal more slowly due to the blood’s reduced ability to clot wounds. While occasional use of aspirin will mitigate this issue, frequent users of blood thinning drugs may experience long-term issues when combining them with chaga.
Because of this, you should consult with a doctor before using chaga if you are already a frequent user of blood thinners. While there is no definitive scientific evidence of synergistic effects from using chaga and blood thinners, it is better to be on the safe side, particularly if you have chronic health problems that require the use of medication. In addition to this, you should stop consuming chaga at least two weeks before surgery in order to prevent any potential blood loss effects from its use.
Potential side effects from overusing blood thinners and combining them with chaga include internal bleeding, particularly in the brain and stomach, two areas of the body that have many blood vessels. Bleeding in the brain can result in paralysis, impaired cognitive function, or even death depending on its severity. Additionally, slowed blood clotting can result in cuts taking longer to heal, necessitating the use of bandages.
While chaga is an overall asset to human health, everyone’s situation is different, and you may have factors in your health that may make consuming chaga a risk. Blood thinner usage is a potential hazard for those interested in using chaga. If you are reliant on blood thinning drugs, you should consult your doctor before you start using chaga.
While chaga has been used for generations in Siberia and Alaska, it has only been introduced to the wider world relatively recently, and as such, there is much about it that is not fully understood. Chaga has been proven to have beneficial effects for the immune system, digestive health, skin, cancer sufferers, and much more, but all foods and medicines carry side effects, and since everyone’s body is different, there is no way to predict with 100 percent accuracy how your body will react to chaga.
Chaga may have deleterious effects when combined with blood thinning drugs due to the fact that chaga itself acts as a blood thinner. While there is no conclusive evidence to suggest that taking chaga is harmful when combined with blood thinners, if you are reliant on blood thinning medication, it’s better to be safe than sorry. Consult with your doctor before you begin using chaga to ensure that your experience with this mushroom is one that you will enjoy and will have benefits for your health.