What does health mean to you? For traditional Chinese medicine, it is the balance of the body. A balanced state where everything is in harmony with everything else and our body is healthy. And not only healthy, we also feel good and enjoy a good quality of life.
Where do you stand with your health? Is your body in balance? Do you feel in harmony with your body?
In this article, you will find an explanation of how MycoMedica mushrooms actually work and why they are so popular.
Since the beginning of time, all around us, there have been two opposing forces. Yin and Yang. One can't exist without the other, and at the same time, one is constantly trying to overpower the other. To take over the other's territory. When one grows, it's at the expense of the other. Look at the monad symbol, where you can see it clearly. Yin gradually increases, and when it reaches its maximum, it turns into Yang. And vice versa.
This constant predominance creates regular cycles in the universe, in nature and in society, where Yin dominates for a while and Yang dominates for a while. The alternation of day and night, seasons, etc.
Even in our organism there are yin-yang changes practically all the time and at all levels, in digestion, in breathing, in the heart pumping blood, in cell metabolism.
Our whole body is one big monad. When we live more Yang, we increase the proportion of Yang energy in us. When we live more Yin, we increase the proportion of Yin energy. And at the same time, the environment we live in affects the ratio of Yin and Yang energy in our body.
Yang life means a fast-paced, active life, when we enjoy everything beyond measure. We work a lot, do sports, eat too much "fiery" food, etc. A simple example - if we consume roasted fatty meats, alcohol and listen to loud and loud music in the hot summer, Yang will increase in our body.
On the other hand, Yin life is all about calmness, slowness, inactivity, and cold food. If we eat too many salads of fresh, uncooked vegetables, tropical fruits, ice cream, milk in winter, Yin energy will dominate our organism.
This chart is a simplified representation of human life. The line in the middle is called the Path of the Middle (Zhong Yong in Chinese). It represents the ideal state. A state where Yin and Yang are in balance. This is the path we should follow to be healthy. Western medicine calls this homeostasis.
Homeostasis is a key biological process that maintains the stability of the body's internal environment, which is a prerequisite for the proper functioning of all organs and systems.
Unfortunately, by the way we live, we actually deviate up or down from the Way of the Middle on a daily basis. And because we are unreasonable people, the deviations from the center are often very pronounced.
Fortunately, our body has an amazing self-regulating ability that continually brings these swings back to the center, and much of the imbalance is self-correcting. That is, it can push excessive Yang (chili peppers) or Yin (ice cream) energy back to the center. This is the space between the Way of the Center line and the lines above and below it.
These lines represent the boundaries of illness. If the deflection is excessive and crosses these boundaries, then our self-regulatory abilities cease to function and subsequently disease erupts.
In order to deal with the disease, the stimulus must come from outside. Our body can't do it alone. And it doesn't matter whether the stimulus is antibiotics, vital mushrooms, herbs, acupuncture, etc. The principle is always the same - to harmonize the yinyang cycle. Push the deflection back to the Way of the Center.
What the stimulus will be is up to the patient. Whether he chooses chemical drugs or natural remedies. While chemical remedies are much more potent and work faster, they often cause other unwanted imbalances in the body. Natural remedies work gently, more slowly, but long term.
In general, people use the vigour of Western pharmacology for acute or life-threatening problems and natural treatments for chronic health problems. However, from my point of view, even such Chinese herbal tinctures, if properly indicated, can solve an acute problem (e.g. flu) within a day.
In a book on Chinese medicine I read about Doctor 1 and Doctor 2. Doctor 1 works and helps in the space between the Way of the Middle and the border of illness. In the space where we mostly help ourselves in different ways and support our body's self-healing abilities. If the boundary of illness is crossed, then Doctor 2 steps in.
One of the natural remedies that effectively help to find the lost balance is vital mushrooms. Vital mushrooms (or also medicinal mushrooms or healing mushrooms) are an increasingly popular means of improving and supporting long-term health today.
Vital mushrooms have long been overlooked by modern medicine, but since about the 1960s, countless experiments, research and clinical studies have been conducted to confirm what people knew in ancient China. They revealed their abilities to modulate the activity of the immune system, kill cancer cells, counteract the development of civilization diseases, act on the nervous system, etc.
They contain an extraordinary complex of active substances that help the human body and, if combined correctly, can help with a whole range of health problems where chemical remedies are - dare I say - a little unnecessarily indicated. They can affect human health comprehensively, they are universal helpers for improving and maintaining human health.
How do vital mushrooms work, you ask? Then you can look at them in two ways: the Western view, which only examines the active ingredients in mushrooms, or the Chinese view, which talks about how individual mushrooms affect Yin and Yang.
Vital mushrooms, which have been used for centuries in traditional Chinese medicine, contain a number of key active ingredients that have beneficial effects on the human body. Perhaps the most important is their ability to modulate the immune system, strengthening it when it is weakened, dampening it when it reacts inappropriately and excessively (allergies or autoimmune diseases).
Polysaccharides: one of the main active substances of vital mushrooms are polysaccharides, especially beta 1,3/1,6 D glucans. These substances are known for their ability to boost the immune system. They promote the production of defense cells such as macrophages and natural killer cells (NK cells), which can help fight infections and even some types of cancer.
Triterpenes: triterpenes are found in the reishi mushroom (Ganoderma lucidum) and may have anti-inflammatory, antihistamine and anti-allergic effects. They help to lower cholesterol and blood pressure.
Antioxidants: many vital mushrooms contain antioxidants (polyphenols and flavonoids) that protect cells from free radical damage and reduce the risk of chronic diseases, including some cancers and heart disease.
Vitamin D and minerals: some mushrooms are a good source of vitamin D and also contain minerals such as selenium, potassium and zinc, which are important for proper immune function and overall health.
Ergothioneine and selenium: these substances act as powerful antioxidants and protect cells from oxidative stress.
Of course, there are many more active substances involved, and not all the mechanisms of action of mushrooms on the human mechanism are explored by today's science.
Chinese medicine looks at specific categories of herbs and other medicines: temperature (whether they warm or cool), taste, and tropism (where they direct their effect). Vital mushrooms are mostly temperature neutral, their taste is usually more or less sweet, and their tropism is to the organs that form the center of our body, the Spleen and Stomach.
In other words, vital mushrooms such as Reishi, Hericium, Chaga, Coriolus, Cordyceps, Maitake, Shiitake, Agaricus, etc. push our total energy towards the center, towards the Way of the Center, by their properties. They return our organism to a state in which we feel healthy. And they do this at all times. In other words, they support Doctor 1 in his unappreciated work.
This is a slightly different approach than looking at vital mushrooms through their active ingredients. However, it very accurately and clearly captures the main benefits of mushrooms on the human body. They bring our body into balance, in all situations, for mild imbalances, but also for disease. And it doesn't matter whether the imbalances are on a physical or psychological level, whether the illnesses are caused by a weakened or overreacting immunity, or whether you are dealing with elevated cholesterol, weakened lung function or fertility problems.
The power of vital mushrooms is not a discovery of modern science. It was known 2,000 years ago in ancient China. The earliest medical materials mention in particular the Reishi mushroom, which the ancient Chinese physicians considered to be one of the few substances whose effects benefit the whole organism and which, even when used for a long time, have no negative effects on it. It was even valued so much that it appeared in ancient Chinese drawings, where it was associated with long human life.
Does that sound incredibly good to you? Like mushrooms are some kind of natural miracle that helps with all ailments? Well, it really is. It just needs to be pointed out that vital mushrooms are for those who have patience and are looking for a permanent solution to their problems. The changes that mushrooms induce in the body are more permanent.
Reishi (Ganoderma lucidum) is known for its anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, anti-allergic and immunostimulant effects. It is often used to promote overall health and vitality, and may also help in reducing fatigue and improving sleep. From a Chinese medicine perspective, it supports the heart and cardiovascular system and harmonizes our psyche. Along with the Coriolus mushroom, it is the most commonly used mushroom for cancer.
Shiitake (Lentinula edodes) is rich in polysaccharides such as lentinans, which can stimulate the immune system. It is used to improve the circulatory system and helps lower cholesterol.
Maitake (Grifola frondosa) has immunomodulatory and antidiabetic effects. Maitake helps regulate blood sugar levels and promotes heart and vascular health.
Cordyceps (Cordyceps sinensis) is used to increase physical performance and endurance. In addition, it has anti-inflammatory effects and supports healthy kidney and lung function.
Chaga (Inonotus obliquus) is high in antioxidants, which helps protect cells from free radical damage. It is also used to support immunity and has anti-inflammatory effects. It is used for inflammation in the digestive system.
Hericium (Hericium erinaceus) is known for its neuroprotective effects. It has a positive effect on the psyche and is a perfect boost for the brain and neurons. It promotes attention, memory and concentration. It also has potential in promoting nerve health and regeneration.
Coriolus (Coriolus versicolor) is very powerful in modulating the immune system. It is literally a "killer" of everything that does not belong in our organism. And it doesn't matter whether it is viruses, bacteria, chlamydia, borrelia or cancer cells. It is often used in parallel with anti-cancer treatment.
If you are excited about vital mushrooms and are thinking of trying them, I would like to point out a few important aspects. It is not easy to get to grips with vital mushrooms. Mushrooms are processed in many different ways today and there is a plethora of products of varying quality on the market. So before you decide to buy any product, I recommend finding out at least the following basic information about it: the origin of the raw material, the way the raw material is processed and safety tests.
Fungi are very sensitive to the environment in which they grow. They can easily absorb harmful substances such as pesticides, heavy metals, pathogenic microorganisms or radioactivity. Much more so than herbs. It is therefore extremely important to use mushrooms grown in an environmentally friendly environment as a source of raw material for production. Which costs money. And there is always someone who wants to make a quick buck at the lowest possible cost. A good producer should definitely know the source of his raw material and declare it on request.
Good producers also test their mushrooms for polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), which are carcinogenic, can affect fetal development and have been linked to cardiovascular disease.
It is a good idea to monitor whether the manufacturer processes the mushrooms by double extraction - water and alcohol. Some substances are insoluble in water, such as terpenes, and therefore need to be released with alcohol. In practice, this applies to only two mushrooms - Reishi and Chaga.
For example, a very popular trick of raw material processors is to replace some of the active substances from vital mushrooms with alternative substances from cheaper sources. Instead of mushroom polysaccharides, ordinary starch is added, instead of mushroom terpenes, terpenes from sage are added. They won't do any harm, but they won't have the desired effect for which we take vital mushrooms.
In fact, if you are buying a package of mushrooms for around 300,-Kč, it is highly likely that it does not contain much Reishi anymore.
The ingredients used must be properly processed. The body of the mushroom cell is made up of chitin, a substance that our digestive system cannot digest. In turn, chitin is responsible for the digestive problems that can occur if we eat uncooked mushrooms. If we want to use the active substances that are "locked" in the mushroom cell, we must first process the mushroom properly. An improperly processed raw material will logically not have the same effects on the body as a mushroom processed in the right way.
Another measure of quality is standardisation. Recent analyses have shown that conventional products tend to have a 30% to 40% polysaccharide content, but the actual proportion of water-soluble polysaccharides is much lower. This may not be so much a deliberate attempt to deceive the manufacturer, but rather a lack of expertise and poor quality of the analyses performed. These variations are unfortunately common and make it impossible to dose mushroom products correctly.
The quality of the raw material is crucial for mushrooms. You want it to support your immune system and not clog it with other impurities. So, in addition to the origin of the raw material, you need to know its safety. Mushrooms are capable of picking up various harmful substances such as heavy metals or pesticides. Or even radioactivity. So when buying vital mushrooms, look for quality and time-tested producers who have their products regularly tested for a range of harmful substances. And ideally those who are able to document that their mushroom contains what it's supposed to.
Take your time in finding the best product, the best mushroom. Research, investigate and ask questions. Read and think. Help, relief and health should be waiting for you in mushroom products. So let's make sure you find them there.
MycoMedica's philosophy is simple yet uncompromising - to provide products that are synonymous with quality, safety and efficacy. This commitment leads MycoMedica to carefully select the best mushroom raw material suppliers. Their goal is to ensure maximum efficacy of their products while eliminating the presence of any hazardous substances. Their mushrooms are selected with the utmost care to ensure they are completely pure and free of unwanted contaminants such as pesticides or heavy metals.
If we compare MycoMedica mushrooms to champagne, just as true champagne comes from Champagne, MycoMedica mushrooms are grown in the purest regions of East Asia. Here, in the traditions of local communities, they mature under the careful supervision of generations of mushroom growers. Mycomedica's vital mushrooms retain their unique potency thanks to ideal climatic conditions, clean air and quality water.
MycoMedica uses a combination of thousands of years of knowledge of traditional Chinese medicine and modern techniques. Each type of mushroom requires specific conditions for growth, which includes careful selection of substrates and a sufficiently long maturation period. For example, Reishi requires quality oak wood for optimal growth, while Chaga thrives on birch trunks, from which it extracts betulinic acid.
MycoMedica Vital Mushrooms undergo a rigorous inspection process to ensure the highest possible quality. From cultivation to harvest, MycoMedica raw materials are tested for heavy metals, pesticides and other impurities. Samples are sent to independent accredited laboratories in the Czech Republic and in Germany or Austria, where they are subjected to numerous tests for safety and purity.
The uniqueness of MycoMedica products is also visible in the crystallization images. These images show the intrinsic quality of the substances and confirm the higher vitality of our mushroom products compared to conventional commercial products.
The final MycoMedica products are manufactured in the Czech Republic, in a family production facility in Police nad Metují, in the middle of the beautiful and clean environment of the Teplice-Adršpach Rocks. They use the most modern technologies and adhere to the strictest hygiene standards.
In conclusion, MycoMedica products are the result of a combination of traditional knowledge, careful selection of raw materials and modern production processes. MycoMedica is proud to offer popular products of the highest quality that are safe, effective and produced with sustainability and purity in mind.
Autor: Milan Schirlo – traditional Chinese medicine therapist, founder of MycoMedica.cz