An herb entry from the Ancient Herbs and Modern Herbs book by James K. Sayre, Copyright, 2001. All rights reserved.


Mushroom, Maitake - Grifola frondosa - family: Polyporaceae, order: Polyporales, class: Homobasidiomycetes.

This is an edible gray-brown mushroom whose fruiting body consists of a series of layers of small petal-shaped structures. The visible portion (fruitbody) of this mushroom may be up to two feet wide. It is typically found growing near the base of stumps or live trees. It produces white spores. Traditional use in Asia as a food source. Modern Japanese use of this mushroom as a remedy for hepatitis and other liver problems and to lower the blood glucose levels in adult diabetics. Modern Japanese use of extracts of this mushroom to support immune systems. Modern Japanese (Kampo) use of fruiting body in the medical treatment of some cancers. Modern American folk use as a remedy for colds, chronic fatigue syndrome and diabetes-related infections. Native to eastern North America, Europe and eastern Asia. Cultivated in Japan.


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Web page last updated on 22 May 2003.