Latin Name: Lentinus edodes
Common name: Shitake
Parts used: Fruiting bodies
Constituents: Nutrients, polysaccharides, alkaloids
Medicinal actions: Immune stimulation/modulation, anti-viral, anti-bacterial, anti-cancer, anti-hypertensive antioxidant, adaptogen.
Medicinal use: Chronic immune dysfunction/disease, altered adrenal function, cancer, chronic fatigue immunodeficiency syndrome, HIV infection and AIDS, cancer, Lyme disease, high cholesterol, hyperglycemia and diabetes.
- Polysaccharides are responsible for immune modulation, they induce interferon production, thus disrupting viral replication and inhibiting bacterial infection. Also increase RNA and DNA in bone marrow, thus increasing lymphocyte production.
- Alkaloids inhibit release of histamine and reduce immune response to allergens, as well as improve oxidative damage.
- Powder 5-10g daily in divided doses.
- Infusion: 1-2 tsp/cup, TID.
- Tincture: (1:4, 40%), 2-4ml TID
- Food (in soups)
Toxicity: None known.
Contraindications: Avoid in pregnancy and breastfeeding.
Interactions: Use with caution with anti-coagulants. Vitamin C appears to enhance the absorption of these immuno-stimulatory polysaccharides and reduces the high molecular weight of mushroom polysaccharides, reducing their viscosity and hence increasing their bioavailability.