List of medicinal mushrooms – vital ingredients of mushroom supplements

Before I dig into types of mushroom supplements, and how you can benefit from them, I find it important to introduce you to the list of medicinal mushrooms first. My goal behind creating the list is for you to get familiar with the essential ingredients that you will encounter in any mushroom supplement. I will also add a short description of why they deserve to be on the list (we know more than 50 species of mushrooms with therapeutic properties, however 16 within them are most popular, widely used and scientifically studied).

But, Katja, you’ll jump right over to the list, without any explanation what mushroom even is? And what about this ”medicinal” nonsense? Are you just trying to make something sound better than it actually is?

You are right, I owe you a couple of definition first.



Any one of many types of fast-growing fungus (plants without leaves or flowers) with a round top (a cap) and short stem. On the underside of the cap you may see a series of closely spaced slits that are called gills. Mushrooms vary in size and color, and some of them also don’t conform to the stalk-and-cap shape. A mycelium, the parent organism of mushrooms, lies beneath the soil. Many of mushrooms are edible/safe for human use, but also many of them are poisonous.

The word mushroom is considered to derive from the French word ”mousse” meaning ”moss”. However, its exact origin is not known.

Medicinal mushrooms

Medicinal mushrooms are macroscopic fungi that are used in the form of powder or extracts. Our ancestors have been using them as a part of traditional medicine and healthy diet. Nowadays they are used for the same purpose – as part of a balanced life-style and for prevention, alleviation, or healing of different diseases.

Medicinal mushrooms generally possess antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-allergic properties. They are known to regulate blood sugar, blood pressure and cholesterol levels. Many scientific studies are proving the therapeutic properties of medicinal mushrooms in humans.

And now, ladies and gentlemen, please meet the mushroom stars that make the difference…

List of medicinal mushrooms

Birch Polypore

  • used to relieve pain and as antiseptic
  • prepared as tea to strengthen the immune system, soothe and reduce fatigue
  • in traditional medicine also used to treat different types of cancer

Caterpillar Fungus

  • used in East Asia as part of a traditional medicine for fertility and as an aphrodisiac
  • positive effect on stress-related issues (such as depression and exhaustion)
  • improving physical performance and recovery

Hoelen Mushroom

  • used as a diuretic and as overall health booster in traditional Chinese and Japanese medicine
  • reducing blood glucose levels
  • anti parasites’ activity

Lion’s Mane

  • benefits nervous system – preventing dementia, Alzheimer’s disease, and improving brain functions
  • helping with menopause symptoms
  • to prevent cardiovascular disease and diabetes
  • improving immune system


  • protecting against high blood pressure
  • reducing blood sugar levels
  • antioxidant properties, which help increase well-being
  • reducing side effects of chemotherapy
  • beneficial for patients with Candida albicans infections

Oyster Mushroom

  • regulates cholesterol and triglyceride levels
  • lowers blood pressure and sugar levels
  • acts anti-inflammatory
  • protecting against cardiovascular disease
  • strengthening immune system and liver health
  • known to help with anti-aging

Red Belted Polypore

  • improving immune system
  • treating headache
  • treating digestive problems such as diarrhea, constipation, and inflammation of the digestive tract
  • acting anti-inflammatory

Red Yeast Rice Mushroom

  • lowering cholesterol levels in blood
  • anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, which help to prevent cardiovascular disease (stroke, coronary heart disease)
  • decreasing blood glucose levels

Reishi, Lingzhi

  • know in traditional East Asian medicine for improving health and longevity – even its name, reishi, means ”mushroom of immortality”
  • antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-allergic properties
  • improving immune system
  • to prevent cardiovascular disease by preventing formation of thrombosis, lowering blood pressure and cholesterol levels
  • preventing respiratory (bronchitis, asthma) and gastrointestinal disorders (gastric ulcers)
  • positive effect on liver and kidney
  • acting as antiviral and antibacterial
  • helps with insomnia and anxiety

Royal Sun Agaricus

  • antitumour and immuno-stimulatory activity (preventing and treating of different types of cancer)
  • anti-inflammatory, anti-allergic, and antiviral
  • lowering blood sugar (protecting against diabetes) and cholesterol levels
  • reducing emotional and physical stress
  • treating hepatitis, dermatitis, osteoporosis and peptic ulcers


  • known as ”elixir of life” in China and Japan, for its promotion of energy and vitality
  • improving immune system
  • to prevent cardiovascular disease (by reducing blood lipid levels)
  • acting as antioxidant and anti-inflammatory
  • helping with allergies and bronchitis
  • activity against infections, such as influenza, common cold and candidiasis

Shaggy Mane

  • antioxidant
  • anti-anxiety effects
  • antitumour activity against breast, ovarian and prostate cancer
  • lowering blood glucose levels

Tinder Fungus

  • used as styptic to stop bleeding and therefore used for treating wounds
  • traditional medicine is using it for relieving pain, treating rheumatism, painful menstruation, hemorrhoids and bladder disorders

Turkey Tail

  • antitumour properties – used for treating various cancers, combined with conventional treatment (first mushroom derived medicine that was approved)
  • improving immune system
  • antioxidant
  • helping with fatigue

Umbrella Polypore

  • used as diuretic
  • improving immune system, and having beneficial effect on kidney and liver
  • anti-inflammatory and antioxidant

Wood Ear

  • used for treating inflammation of the throat and eye irritations
  • antioxidant
  • reducing levels of cholesterol
  • anti thrombotic properties

Wow, mother nature was so generous to us!


I hope my list of medicinal mushrooms brought you a bit of ”behind the scenes” understanding of why there even are mushroom supplements. In my following posts you will get to know each medicinal mushroom mentioned above more in depth.

I would love to hear your intake on the list. Were you already familiar with any of mushroom (or all of them)?

Are you secretly happy to find out about Tinder Fungus, because you’ll use it as a fun dinner conversation input? I sure am, and to let you in on my plan: I will bring it up ”casually” right after I’ll place my order for mushroom soup.

With love,


Note: The list of medicinal mushrooms was made in the alphabetic order.

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