Grifola frondosa - USA Grown
“Maitake” means dancing mushroom in Japanese. The mushroom is said to have gotten its name after people danced with happiness upon finding it in the wild, such are its incredible healing properties.
The mushroom grows wild in parts of Japan, China, and North America. It grows at the bottom of Oak, Elm, and Maple trees. It can be cultivated and even grown at home, though it typically won’t grow as well as it does in the wild. You can usually find the mushroom during the autumn months.
Maitake is considered a medicinal mushroom and is classified as an adaptogen. An adaptogen helps the body resist all forms of stress, either mental or physical and has a normalizing function on the body. Unlike common mushrooms, Maitake is packed with healthy nutrients, such as powerful antioxidants, Vitamins B, C and niacin, minerals like iron, zinc, potassium, selenium, protein, amino acids, and fiber.(6)
It is thought to be the most powerful mushroom as far as strengthening the immune system. The glucans and polysaccharides in it stimulate the immune system by increasing the activity of the T-helper cells. The Maitake mushroom has an active ingredient called beta glucan. It’s a polysaccharide found in other medicinal mushrooms. The maitake, however, contains one called D-fraction. Researchers believe that it is this beta glucan that gives the mushroom it’s healing powers.
Although maitake mushroom has been used in Japan and China for thousands of years, it has only gained popularity in the United States over the last twenty years. People are praising this mushroom for its promises of health, vitality, and longevity.
What health benefits are tied to maitake mushroom? Compared to other mushrooms, maitake has shown better results in preventing and treating cancer and other health conditions. Maitake also has a positive effect on overall immunity.
Maitake mushrooms are rich in:
vitamins B and C
The mushrooms are also:
Scientists are currently studying the unique way the mushroom supports overall health and fights illness.(1)
A 2013 study indicates that maitake D-Fraction could be useful in preventing and treating breast cancer. Researchers suggest that this mushroom can fight the growth and reproduction of cancerous cells.(3)
Maitake mushroom has been shown (2) to suppress tumor growth in mice. It can also increase the number of cells fighting against the tumor. This suggests that it could also be effective in managing cancer in humans when taken orally.
An earlier study found maitake D-Fraction, which is an extract, to be efficient in killing human cancer cells. It was taken alongside a protein that also fights cancer and succeeded in increasing the protein’s effectiveness.(4)
The results of a 2015 study showed that maitake mushroom can have a positive effect on rats with type 2 diabetes. During the study, maitake mushroom consumption had a positive effect on glucose levels of rats. This points to the mushroom’s potential to treat type 2 diabetes in humans.(5)
Maitake mushroom may also be useful in treating:
cold and flu viruses
high or low blood pressure
side effects of chemotherapy
Maitake also has very strong antiviral properties and has been shown to kill HIV virus in lab experiments. It has also been used to treat hepatitis and chronic fatigue syndrome. It may also have value in treating high blood pressure and improving insulin levels.