There are many varieties of mushrooms that have been traditionally used in Ayurvedic, Chinese & Western Herbal medicine mostly for their immune-influencing & antioxidant properties. Some of these mushrooms include Reishi, Shiitake, Maitake and Cordyceps, but there are thousands of species. Each mushroom type helps support the body in a different way, with common immune-influencing mushrooms outlined below.
Reishi is part of the Ganoderma fungus group, and have long been used in traditional Chinese medicine. Characterised by their highly glossy skin, they are quite rare as only two or three in every 10,000 deciduous trees experience reishi growth. Reishi mushrooms have both antiviral and antibacterial properties, and have been shown to have a positive effect on white blood cells. Reishi are also known as adaptogens, which means they influence your body’s stress response.
Shiitake (also known as Black Forest Mushroom) have been used in traditional Chinese medicine for thousands of years. A popular mushroom among many households in every day cooking, they are characterised by their ‘meaty’ (umami) flavour. Shiitake have long been used in medicine for immune health, and are known to have anti-inflammatory & antiviral properties.
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