Mushrooms – these little beasts are popular across the globe, thanks to its rich, savory taste and potential health benefits. No wonder, AHCC – an enzyme-fermented extract which is derived from L. edodes is gaining popularity as a dietary-herbal supplement since last few years.
AHCC is popular in China and Japan and is claimed to have several health benefits. It helps to enhance the immune system, possibly helps to fight against cancer, improves the quality of life during chemotherapy and may help to get rid of HPV.
This article will shed light on the potential benefits of AHCC and will explain everything regarding the AHCC that you need to know. [toc]
What is AHCC supplement?
AHCC stands for ‘Active Hexose Correlated Compound’ and is an enzyme-fermented extract from Lentinula edodes. The L. edodes commonly known as ‘Shiitake’ mushrooms and is native to East Asia. 
Shiitake is an edible mushroom and Chinese and Japanese people are using them for decades and they are usually referred to as ‘medical mushroom’ for obvious reasons. They are a type of fungi that grows on decaying wood matter or trees.
They are rich in carbohydrates, fiber, minerals, vitamins and when AHCC is extracted from them, the extract is found to be rich in alpha-glucans. [/thrive_text_block]
Best AHCC supplement choices:
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Does AHCC cure HPV?
Few pre-clinical studies show that the AHCC helps to boost the immune system to successfully combat the HPV but those are the in-vitro studies and phase II study is going on while we write this article. (Jul 2019).  Also, people from China and Japan using Shiitake mushrooms for decades and anecdotally use AHCC for various health issues.
A double-blind, placebo-controlled study shows that taking 3gm AHCC per day for 4 weeks can result in a significant increase of dendritic cells in healthy volunteers, which plays an important role in immunity. Dendritic cells present in the skin tissues and the inner lining of intestine, nose, stomach, and lungs. They also play the role to kill the HPV-infected keratinocytes.  
Things to look while buying AHCC supplement:
Nowadays, AHCC supplement is easily available in medical stores as well as being sold online on a platform like Amazon. Often, AHCC is combined with other ingredient and enclosed in a capsule or presented as softgels with 500 or 750mg AHCC supplement per capsule.
Though AHCC is available as a supplement and does not require a prescription, before you purchase AHCC supplement, please visit your doctor and see if it recommended for you or not. Also, treating health condition with supplements and not taking primary care may result in worsening of the condition.
While buying AHCC supplement, pay attention to the details provided by the manufacturer. It is important that the manufacturer should follow the outline ‘Good Manufacturing Practices’. Supplement that got the seal of approval from organizations like NSF international, U.S. Pharmacopeia and consumer lab are believed to have good manufacturing quality.
Another thing you need to pay attention is the dose of AHCC per capsule. Usually, they are available in 500 and 750mg capsules but if you are planning or been advised to consume around 3 to 4gm per day then 750mg or higher does per capsule will be beneficial.
Health benefits of AHCC supplement
AHCC supplement can help to boost the immune response, inhibit and delays the growth of cancerous cells to a certain extent and may improve the colon & liver health.
Boost immune response – As discussed above, AHCC helps to enhance the dendritic cells and CD8+T cells which plays an important role in our immunity. Enhanced CDs and CD8+T cells help to fight against viral infections like HPV, flu virus, etc.
Delays tumor growth – In vitro studies performed on mice show that AHCC has the potential power to delays the tumor growth and inhibit the cancer cell production. It does so by enhancing the tumor immune surveillance while regulating both innate and adaptive immune responses. 
Improve colon health – AHCC enhances the mucosal barrier function colon which may result in reducing colon inflammation and may help to control the symptoms of colitis.
Is it safe to take AHCC?
When taken in medically suggested dose via mouth, AHCC is termed as POSSIBLY SAFE for adults. The research found that the dose of 3 gram per day has been tolerated well and used safely for almost 9 years while 4.5 to 6 gram per day dose been used up to the 6 months.
[thrive_text_block color=”light”]Bottom line: AHCC seems to have some positive effects on overall health, especially improving the skin, colon and liver health. It also helps to reduce the side effects of chemotherapy to a certain extent and delays the tumor formation. Recently, it is popularly used against the HPV infection and several people claim that it worked for them.
Though in-vitro studies and anecdotal evidence suggests that AHCC may help to get rid of HPV, more in-depth clinical studies required to see how AHCC can cure the HPV.[/thrive_text_block]
Affiliate disclaimer: Wartly may receive a portion of the revenues if you make a purchase using one of the links above.
 Shah, Shinil & A Walker, Peter & D Moore-Olufemi, Stacey & Sundaresan, Alamelu & Kulkarni, Anil & Andrassy, Richard. (2011). An Evidence-Based Review of a Lentinula edodes Mushroom Extract as Complementary Therapy in the Surgical Oncology Patient. JPEN. Journal of parenteral and enteral nutrition. 35. 449-58. doi: 10.1177/0148607110380684.
 Smith JA, Mathew L, Gaikwad A, et al. From Bench to Bedside: Evaluation of AHCC Supplementation to Modulate the Host Immunity to Clear High-Risk Human Papillomavirus Infections. Front Oncol. 2019;9:173. Published 2019 Mar 20. doi: 10.3389/fonc.2019.00173
 Immunological Effect of Active Hexose Correlated Compound (AHCC) in Healthy Volunteers: A Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Trial. Authors – Terakawa N, Matsui Y, Satoi S, Yanagimoto H, Takahashi K, Yamamoto T, Yamao J, Takai S, Kwon AH, Kamiyama Y. doi: 10.1080/01635580801993280
 Immunological role of dendritic cells in cervical cancer. Manickam A, Sivanandham M, Tourkova IL. 10.1007/978-0-387-72005-0_16
 Active hexose correlated compound enhances tumor surveillance through regulating both innate and adaptive immune responses. Gao Y, Zhang D, Sun B, Fujii H, Kosuna K, Yin Z. 10.1007/s00262-005-0111-9