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What is AHCC®? The Full Guide


There are a ton of supplements available in the health and wellness industry today, boasting to help with one thing or another. However, there is one supplement that stands apart from the rest that has taken the world by storm due to the amazing health benefits it provides: AHCC®.

Today, AHCC® is the world's most researched alternative supplement derived from healing mushrooms, but what exactly is it? Keep reading as we take a dive into AHCC® supplementation – here is the full patient's guide!

AHCC®: An Overview

AHCC® has been used for a wide range of health conditions all around the world! It is composed mainly of polysaccharides, including beta-glucans. A compromised immune system can lead to many adverse effects on an individual’s health and wellness... Well, the good news is that it just so happens AHCC® cranks up the dial on your natural immune response.* This means that this natural AHCC® supplement works to help you fight all kinds of threats to your health!* 

What are some proven benefits of AHCC®?

In human clinical trials, AHCC® has shown that it modifies both the innate and adaptive response by:

  • Increasing the activity of Natural Killer (NK) cells by as much as 300-800%*
  • Increasing the production of cytokines*
  • Increasing the amount of dendritic cells*
  • Increasing populations of macrophages* 
  • Increasing the number of T cells by as much as 200%*

How is AHCC® made?

AHCC® is a supplement that is made from a unique compound that was extracted from a hybridization of several species of mushroom. Most commonly from the shiitake, but can also include wakame k, fujii h, this is how AHCC® is made:

  1. The first ingredient ever used for AHCC® is the shitake mushroom. These mushrooms specifically have a rich and long history of healing powers. 
  2. The second ingredient comes from several hybrids of the Basidiomycota phylum of fungi.
  3. While there are many parts that come from a mushroom, AHCC® is made only using the mycelia. The mycelia are located underground and are hair-like root structures that come from these powerful mushrooms.
  4. The various mycelia are then cultured in rice bran extract until they form a colony. It is important to keep in mind that the rice bran extract has immune system-enhancing qualities. 
  5. The colony is then cultured for an additional 45 to 60 days. 
  6. After roughly two months, the colony then undergoes a series of patented steps that involve sterilization, cultivation, decomposition by enzymes, concentration, and freeze-drying. 

2 Types of Immunity And Their Role In Your Immune System

The immune system's job is to protect you. It is constantly scanning your body to determine if anything that doesn't belong has entered into your system or if any of your cells need help. 

You have two basic types of immunity known as innate and adaptive. Both play an important role within your body. Your innate immunity will launch a quick, immediate nonspecific attack against a threat, while your adaptive immunity moves a little slower but produces a specific response.

Innate Immunity: First Line of Defense

Your innate immunity acts as your first line of defense and is made up of the following:

  • Natural killer (NK) cells – these are white blood cells in your immune system that recognize and destroy compromised cells by injecting granules into them, causing them to then explode. Your white blood cell count is very important as it is key in understanding your overall health! When you have a low white blood cell count, it means your body can start to not feel well.
  • Dendritic cells- also white blood cells, these present foreign substances to B and T cells which initiate an adaptive response. 
  • Cytokines – these act as little chemical messengers that help your immune cells to communicate and coordinate an immune response. 
  • Macrophages – these are very special white blood cells that ingest and engulf foreign material and cellular debris.

Adaptive Immunity: Second Line of Defense

Your adaptive immunity acts as your second line of defense and is made up of the following:

  • B and T cells – B cells, which mature in the bone marrow, and T cells, which mature in the thymus, are lymphocytes. CD8 +t cells are a specific t cell affected by AHCC®. These white blood cells are able to recognize previous invaders and destroy them with a specific response.

AHCC® is a remarkable mushroom product that has a ton of incredible benefits. AHCC® has immune system enhancing, immunomodulatory, and antioxidant properties*. It also helps promote a healthy inflammation response.*Here are some interesting facts on AHCC® that you should know:

  • It is a standardized extract that comes from the Lentinula edodes also, known as the shitake mushroom
  • It is a supplement that is rich in many beneficial properties such as alpha glucans
  • It was first developed in 1987 and is manufactured in Japan by Amino up
  • It modulates your body’s innate immunity, which is your front line of defense working to support a healthy immune function*
  • It has been studied for over 20 years, with research still continuing to this day

What if I am allergic to mushrooms?

No worries! Most mushroom allergies are often associated with exposure to the spores. The spores sit on the top of the mushroom. AHCC® comes from the mycelia, which is the root of the mushrooms that do not contain any spores! You should not have any allergy issues, however, like with all new supplements, it is very important to discuss it with your primary care provider just in case!

AHCC® is for everyone regardless of their health status. If you are someone that wants a strong immune system, then you can benefit by incorporating AHCC® into your diet. Like we mentioned earlier, your immune system is your first life of defense against threats of all kinds. Take care of your body and keep your immune proactive by supporting it with AHCC®!*

When you are looking for an AHCC® product, look for a company that has a good and strong reputation. AHCC® is still new, so it is important to also make sure that you purchase your supplements from a company like Quality of Life that can back every ingredient through human studies and delivered in dosages consistent with clinical research! Your health is important, and so are the supplements that you put in your body!

Buy AHCC® - Kinoko Platinum

Medically reviewed by Jaime Salas Rushford

Written by Quality of Life – Updated on September 6, 2022

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