Mushrooms, chestnuts, pomegranates and grapes are only some of the foods in season in October. Here’s the list to buy and eat sustainably this month.
All the virtues of medicinal mushrooms
Micotherapy uses many medicinal mushrooms to protect our body against many pathologies and to preserve our vital energy.
Mushrooms, employed by Chinese traditional medicine for many centuries, have recently piqued the interest of western countries that are studying their beneficial effects and therapeutic use. There are different types of medicinal mushrooms with diverse functions on the human body, but they all have positive effects on the immune system, lipid and glucose metabolisms and to tackle inflammation.
Reishi or Ganoderma lucidum was called by Chinese ancients Ling zhi, i.e. the mushroom of immortality, because it is thought to encourage longevity. An ancient Chinese book says that reishi mushrooms are useful to increase vital energy, improve the ability to think, memory and to delay ageing. It is an adaptogenic substance because it helps the body to recover its natural power of healing itself, so to improve its resistance to disease and limit its ongoing manifestation. It’s inedible for its bitter taste and woody texture and it is an immune modulator, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, lipid metabolism regulator, liver protector, antiviral as well as it promotes sleep. It improves the ability of manage psychophysical stress and enhances the heart’s energy, Qi. For its high content in polysaccharides, amino acids, vitamins and mineral salts it is a powerful remedy that normalises body functions.
Maitake mushrooms or Grifola frondosa, is known as the king of mushrooms for its dimensions and its many properties. It is considered a tonic that increases vitality, it is useful to treat hypertension, to improve the immune response and in all cases of metabolic disorder. According to recent studies it is a natural remedy to treat bladder and prostate-related pathologies.
The Shiitake mushroom or Lentinula edodes is also considered the king of mushrooms and it is the first one to be used for therapeutical purposes. It improves the flow of blood and vital energy and it helps fight colds and it functions as a tonic for the liver and kidneys. It is considered a delicious food with a sweetish flavour mostly consumed by those people who have high cholesterol levels. Like reishi mushrooms, it promotes longevity, tones up the vital energy and protects the heart and, in addition, it is employed to treat gastrointestinal diseases.
Another therapeutic mushroom is the Polyporus umbellatus that drains and dissolves humidity, so it has a diuretic effect. It is also useful to tackle urinary tract infections and it is specific for the lymphatic system.
The Coprinus comatus contains vitamin C, D, E, group B, 20 amino acids including all the essential ones, proteins and is very high in minerals. It is excellent when cooked and it is used to improve the metabolism and glucose levels in the blood, but even to counterbalnace the damages caused by oxidative stress in case of hyperglycaemia.
The Hericium erinaceus, also called lion’s mane or bearded tooth, is employed to treat gastrointestinal diseases. In ancient times it was used powdered on the wounds to heal it over faster. New studies demonstrates its beneficial effects on the gastrointestinal mucosa thanks to its anti-inflammatory and mucosa regenerating properties and its probiotic action. Besides being used in cooking, they are sold in capsules to be taken a couple of times per day, with or without food, according to every need, with vitamin C that improves their digestion.
In any case, the tip is to choose products distributed by reliable companies that guarantee the origin and the healthiness of the food they sell. In addition, it’s better to consult experts in order to choose the most suitable kind of mushroom to the condition one has to fight, since the remedies are personalised.
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There are mushrooms that have been used for centuries all around the world for their therapeutic properties. We have chosen five of them.
The Shiitake (Lentinus Edodes) is a variety of mushrooms native to the Far East.
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