I was captivated by the beauty and energetics of the shiitake mushrooms I came across at the Santa Rosa Farmer’s Market last weekend.
The medicine man behind the mushrooms stand was even more enchanting. The featured image on my post are these exact mushrooms I speak of. These mushrooms were way different than the ones at a conventional grocery store and even way beyond the one’s at the local health food store.
These medicinal outdoor grown spring water fed mushrooms were lovingly cared for by the grower. They were so potent in aroma, so moist in texture and oh so rich in color I was so thrilled to take these home and make something special. I love spring and summer time because of the bounty at the grower’s markets. These mushrooms inspired me to dive deeper into the qualities and benefits of truly medicinal shiitake mushrooms. So let’s take a journey together and learn more about these potent fungi that bless the earth.
Shiitake mushrooms are native to Eastern Asia where they grow wild and are also cultivated. Rich in vitamin D to regulate our hormones and help us keep strong healthy bones, these mushrooms are valuable immune modulators to keep our system running clean and efficient.
Due to the high polysaccharide content they induce the production of interferon in our body. Just as it sounds, interferon, interferes with tumor cells, parasites, bad bacteria, viruses and pathogenic substances. These interferon’s can then activate NK cells and white blood cells to really suppress tumor activity.
I love to include soups, made with these shiitake mushrooms, in a rebuild program because they are allies in health and well being.
Easy to digest, when properly prepared these are key for those needing gentle yet powerful foods to generate a strong and healthy immune response.
Who could benefit from Shiitake Mushrooms?
Really anyone wanting to prevent illnesses as well as those wanting to naturally recover from illness. Those with auto-immune conditions, AIDS, herpes, influenza, colds, overgrowth of candida, hepatitis could all benefit.
And the earth greatly benefits from shiitake mushrooms as they aid the soil in cleansing of unnatural chemicals that are rampant today.
The mushrooms full potential is released when hot water extracted, so preparing a soup is best. I love a simple chickpea miso broth base, then adding in other veggies like broccoli, seaweed and mineral rich greens at the end to not over cook them.
Chinese medicine teaches us that Shiitake mushrooms work on the yang energy of the body invoking an upward movement of this energy.
This is great for lower body issues such as digestive disturbances. These mushrooms help the circulatory system run smooth, activate the blood and neutralize toxins.
They are anti-inflammatory, natures antibiotic, anti-viral and anti-carcinogenic. Enjoy adding in other medicinal mushrooms to your soups like hot water extract capsules of cordcyeps and reishi. Or try brewing a chaga tea base for a power pact immune strengthening brew.
I am so grateful that I was able to come across these potent mushrooms and really get to know our shiitake mushroom friends. Beyond all of the medicinal benefits they taste so amazing when you can find really fresh wild or outdoor grown one’s cultivated with love!