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Hifas da Terra publishes the results of an observational study on Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS)

    Table of Contents

    • Hifas da Terra (HdT) conducted the first study on Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS) associated with the use of Mycotherapy.
    • The objective of the present study was to evaluate the effect of a 2-month accompaniment of an extract of Reishi HdT ( Ganoderma lucidum ) on the intensity of painful symptoms of RLS.
    • This study was made possible thanks to neurologist Jean-Marc Bugnicourt, who ensured the recruitment and monitoring of patients throughout the study.

    Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS), which can be found under the name restlessness or nocturnal restlessness, is a major cause of sleep disorders . It manifests itself mainly in the lower limbs, mainly in the evening before going to bed, with unpleasant sensations similar to tingling, tingling, burning and stinging which improve as soon as the person starts moving. The global prevalence of RLS is estimated to be between 5 and 10% [ 1 ].

     

    RLS can result from other conditions such as diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, kidney failure, iron deficiency or treatment with certain medications. Two hypotheses are put forward concerning the origin of this syndrome, that of an iron deficiency and that of a dopaminergic dysfunction [ 2 ]. 

     

    Concerning the treatments implemented, Doctor Bugnicourt mentions that those “ recommended for RLS include dopamine agonists and alpha 2-delta calcium channel receptor ligands. However, the potential side effects of dopamine agonists limit the use of these medications in some people (sometimes even increasing RLS symptoms) ” [ 3,4 ].  

    MUSHROOMS: A POTENTIAL SUPPORT FOR RLS?

    The studies and data we have on mushrooms lead us to believe that they may be useful in helping people with restless legs syndrome. “Indeed, certain medicinal mushrooms have demonstrated their effectiveness in improving neurological, psychiatric and cognitive disorders, such as depression or Alzheimer’s disease” [ 3, 5,6 ]. Among them, we can cite Reishi (Ganoderma lucidum) also known as “Lingzhi” or “mushroom of immortality”. In China, this mushroom has been used as a tranquilizing agent to treat insomnia for thousands of years. Its effect reflects tranquilizing activity in the treatment of agitation, palpitations and insomnia [7]. 

     

    Ganoderma lucidum contains approximately 400 bioactive compounds which are believed to have a number of pharmacological effects, including immunomodulation, anti-inflammatory, analgesic, antibacterial, antiviral, anti-androgenic, anti-diabetic, etc. [8].

     

    To our knowledge, Ganoderma lucidum has not yet been clinically evaluated in patients with RLS.

     

    The objective of the present study is to evaluate the effects of an extract of Reishi HdT ( Ganoderma lucidum ) on idiopathic forms of RLS.

    RLS STUDY PROTOCOL

    The study participants were recruited by Doctor Bugnicourt in his neurology practice. They had to have a diagnosis of restless legs syndrome (according to criteria published by the International Restless Legs Syndrome Study Group (IRLSSG)) and be over 18 years old. Excluded were people with diabetes, iron deficiency (defined by a serum ferritin level less than 50 mg/l), renal insufficiency, treatment with medications likely to exacerbate RLS, and prior treatment with RLS. Ganoderma lucidum. Ultimately, 18 patients were included in the analysis.

     

    The accompaniment with the medicinal mushrooms consisted of taking 2 capsules of concentrated extract of Reishi HdT (Mico-Rei, Ganoderma lucidum) per day, before the evening meal, over a period of 2 months.  

     

    To measure the effects of taking Reishi on RLS, patients had to complete the restless legs syndrome severity score questionnaire at different times during the study: before taking Reishi, 1 month and 2 months after. the start of taking Reishi, and finally 2 weeks after stopping Reishi supplementation. 

    RELIEF NOTICED BY THE MAJORITY OF PARTICIPANTS

    Following the 2 months of G. lucidum supplementation, “ thirteen (72%) of 18 patients reported relief. Relief was maintained in 11 patients (61%) two weeks after the end of G. lucidum supplementation.

    The statistical analyzes carried out from the questionnaires show a significant improvement (p < 0.05 (p = 0.015)) from the first month and even more significant (p < 0.001) from the second month and after stopping mycotherapy. 

    GANODERMA LUCIDUM : AN INTERESTING POTENTIAL TO BE DEEPENED

    The improvements observed in the study patients could be linked to the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory capacities of G. lucidum, and thus be responsible for the pain relief in these patients.

     

    The results obtained allow us to conclude from this study that taking 2 capsules of Reishi over a period of 2 months provides relief for patients suffering from RLS. Furthermore, this study also appears to be the first to evaluate the effect of G. lucidum on RLS. 

     

    It should be noted, however, that the study has certain limitations. Indeed, the study population was limited and there was no placebo group. Furthermore, it would be interesting to determine the time and the optimal dose of G. lucidum to use in people with RLS. 



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