About Mushrooms
(see below for all varieties and prices)
Medicinal mushrooms (sometimes called toadstools) have been used in traditional medicine for thousands of years. They have a variety of health and therapeutic effects. Some nicknames that various mushrooms have include immortal mushroom, fairy stool, hen-of-the-wood, hedgehog fungus, royal sun agaricus, and monkey's head. Below, you can review products for information like how to use, benefits, botanical names, cautions, references, and therapeutic uses. 

Mushrooms are small living organisms that look sort of like small umbrellas. Athough they may look somewhat similar to plants, they are not technically classified as such. There are over 3,000 types of mushrooms currently known, classified as fungi.

Mushrooms have an interesting past, and present history. Penicillin and tetracycline are derivated from common mushrooms. People would gather the mushrooms and apply to open wounds, sores and rashes.  They would use different methods to apply them such as using them as a compress or poultice. 

Look carefully at mushrooms.  The fungi lack chlorophyll.  So how do mushrooms obtain food and nutrients?  Easy,  mushrooms absorb from the soil and decaying wood in their environment. The mushrooms will develop slender filaments, called mycelium.  These mycelium penetrate underground assimilate nutrients. Don't under estimate the importance of these mycelium.  In the words of mycologist Paul Stamets, "The entire food web of nature is based on these fungal filaments, the mycelium network that infuses all land masses in the world is a supportive membrane upon which life proliferates and further diversifies."

Some mushrooms have many medicinal properties while others have poisonous flesh. On top of that, many mushrooms look similar to one another and even professional mycologists sometimes have trouble telling them apart. That being said, you should never eat a mushroom you find unless you are absolutely positive that you know what it is.

Parts of Mushrooms
Mushrooms have a variety of different parts. See the diagram on the left to identify what each part of the mushroom is.

Mushroom Parts Labeled by 1stChineseHerbs

Cap: The cap is the top of the mushroom (and often looks sort of like a small umbrella). Mushroom caps can come in a variety of colors but most often are brown, white, or yellow.

Gills, Pores, or Teeth: These structures appear under the mushroom's cap. They look similar to a fish's gills.

Ring: The ring (sometimes called the annulus) is the remaining structure of the partial veil after the gills have pushed through.

Stem or Stipe: The stem is the tall structure that holds the cap high above the ground.

Volva: The volva is the protective veil that remains after the mushroom sprouted up from the ground. As the fungus grows, it breaks through the volva.

Mycelium: The mycelium of a mushroom is essentially the root system. These thin strands stretch outward and downward to search through the soil for nutrients. 


Some of the chemical constituents commonly found in mushrooms include inoleic acid, oleic acid, chitin, glycogen, trehalose, mannitol, β-glucans, polysaccharides, potassium, ergosterol, provitamin D₂, and phenolids with antioxidative properties. 

How to incorporate medicinal mushrooms into your diet

Incorporating medicinal mushrooms into your diet can be a great way to enhance your overall health and well-being. Here are a few ways to add them to your daily routine:

Adding powdered mushrooms to your smoothies: You can blend powdered medicinal mushrooms like Reishi or Chaga into your favorite smoothie recipes for a nourishing boost. Please note when adding to smoothies, the powder is usually very fine, and you may have a small amount of the powder settle to the bottom.   Super simple remedy, just stir with spoon.

Brewing mushroom tea: Many medicinal mushrooms, such as Lion's Mane or Cordyceps, can be brewed into a delicious and health-promoting tea. Simply steep the mushrooms in hot water and enjoy.  Mushrooms may have different brewing times, depending upon the mushroom.   Brewing a mushroom for 3 minutes versa 10 minutes will provide a different taste. 

Cooking with mushrooms: Incorporate fresh or dried medicinal mushrooms into your cooking. They can be added to soups, stir-fries, and even pasta dishes for an extra dose of nutrition.

Choosing the right medicinal mushroom supplement

When it comes to choosing a medicinal mushroom supplement, there are a few factors to consider:

Quality and sourcing: Look for supplements that are made from organically grown or wildcrafted mushrooms. This ensures that you are getting the highest quality and most potent mushrooms.

Extraction method: Different extraction methods can affect the bioavailability and efficacy of the mushrooms. Look for supplements that use extraction methods like hot water extraction or dual extraction to ensure maximum benefits.

Certifications: Check for certifications like Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) and third-party testing to ensure the supplement is safe and free from contaminants.

Dosage and instructions: Follow the dosage instructions provided by the manufacturer. It's important not to exceed the recommended dosage, as some mushrooms can have potent effects.

Remember, it's always a good idea to consult with a healthcare professional before starting any new supplements, especially if you have any pre-existing health conditions or take medications.


  • Kalač P. A review of chemical composition and nutritional value of wild-growing and cultivated mushrooms. J Sci Food Agric. 2013 Jan;93(2):209-18. doi: 10.1002/jsfa.5960. Epub 2012 Nov 21. Review. PubMed PMID: 23172575.

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