Biological Name: Grifola frondosa
Other Names: Maitake, dancing mushroom, mushroom (maitake)
Parts Used: fruiting body
A common denominator among mushroom and herbal adaptogens is the presence of complex polysaccharides in their structure. These active components have the unique ability to act as immunomodulators and, as such, are researched for their potential role in cancer and AIDS treatment.
Historically, maitake has been used as a tonic and adaptogen. It was used as a food to help promote wellness and vitality. Traditionally, consumption of the mushroom was thought to prevent high blood pressure and cancer—two applications that have been the focal point of modern research.
Maitake is useful for:
- chemotherapy support
- high cholesterol
- HIV support
- high blood pressure
- high triglycerides
- immune function
The polysaccharides present in maitake have a unique structure and are among the most powerful to be studied to date. The primary polysaccharide, beta-D-glucan, is well absorbed when taken orally and is currently under review for the prevention and treatment of cancer, and as a supportive tool for HIV infection.
Clinical research with maitake mushroom has increased dramatically in the past several years. In addition to cancer and HIV-infection studies, maitake is also being studied as a potential tool in the management of diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and obesity.
Maitake is a very large mushroom (the size of a basketball), which grows deep in the mountains of Northeastern Japan. Only recently have Japanese farmers succeeded in producing high-quality organic maitake mushrooms, allowing for wider availability both in Japan and the United States. The fruiting body and the mycelium of maitake are used.
Use as food, tea, capsule or tablet. Many people take 3-7 grams of maitake supplements per day.
Used as recommended, there have been no reports of any side effects with maitake. We recommend that you contact your doctor before starting any herbal treatment.