Mushrooms represent a largely unexplored world especially in the Western hemisphere. They are not considered a plant because they don't undergo photosynthesis. They are a fungus. When it comes to fungi, there are over 5,000 different species in North America alone and many of them are wildly popular in the culinary world.
Several Eastern cultures have long recognized mushrooms for their health promoting attributes.* Over the last fifty years, scientists again, mostly in the Eastern world have finally begun to validate their many potential health benefits.
Over 300 different species of mushrooms are now thought to have potential for promoting health.* Evidence continues to emerge, confirming how mushrooms’ proteins, trace minerals, polysaccharides, amino acids and fiber promote overall heath.*
These and other compounds found in mushrooms are now believed to help…
- Support immune function*
- Promote normal cellular growth*
- Protect against environmental stressors*
- Support your body’s normal detoxification process*
- Preserve cellular structure*
- Support healthy gut flora*
- Promote optimal digestion*
In other words, mushrooms are increasingly thought to play many different roles: adaptogens, antioxidants, detoxifying agents just to name a few.*
A Mushroom Is More than What Meets the Eye
When most people think of a mushroom, they think of a stem and a cap.
However, there's much more to a mushroom. What you and I consider a mushroom is actually the fruiting body of a much larger mass called "mycelium".
The mycelium is the part of the mushroom you don't see or typically eat. It's the hidden part of the fungus and up to 95% of mushrooms' total biomass that lies beneath the surface of the soil.
Mycelium is a vast network of living cells covering much of the earth's surface. And when I say "vast", I'm not exaggerating.
More than 8 miles of these individual mycelium cells, called mycelia, can permeate ONE cubic inch of soil! And as the largest biological entities on the planet, these “fungal mats” can live for decades and even centuries.
Here’s an important point I want you to hold on to… During its life, the mycelium has one goal: To preserve and promote the existence of the species.
Mushroom or mycelium cells struggle to survive against invaders. In order to survive, mycelia have developed highly efficient and proactive immune systems.
Many scientists now believe that the highly developed immune system, the mycelia, has evolved over the years, along with its ability to break down organic matter in nature, are exactly what makes mushrooms so valuable to humans and other mammals.
To get a better understanding of how the mycelium promotes and preserves its species and what that can mean for us, let’s take a closer look at its life cycle.
Here’s a detailed look at the complete life cycle of the mycelium – and the mushroom:
The Life Cycle of the Mushroom
The diagram starts when the mature mushroom releases its spores (#1 in the upper left corner). These released spores germinate in an environment that promotes growth. It can be soil, plant matter, or other substrate.
Keep in mind everything is happening underground until step #4. Environmental conditions such as rain and warm temperatures encourage the mycelium to form compact masses that develop into “fruit” – mushrooms – that can literally pop up overnight.
In short, the mycelium achieves its goal of promoting its species by growing mushrooms. These mycelium “fruit” produce spores in their cap’s underside gills.
The spores rapidly multiply and by the time the mushrooms reach adulthood of their short lifespan, their gills release spores into the air and soil. After releasing their spores, mushroom fruit bodies decompose quickly, often within a day. The life cycle then repeats itself.
What you may not appreciate from this rather complex diagram is the enormity of the process.
Growing at the rate of one quarter to two inches per day, imagine the growth of the mycelial mass from just a single mushroom species. Every inch of soil hosts thousands of species of fungi.
Just more evidence of the power of the mycelium and its ability to promote the life of the species – this time through genetic diversity.
Making Mushrooms and Mycelium Work For You
As I mentioned earlier, other cultures have valued mushrooms for their health-supporting properties for five millennia and science is now starting to validate many of those claims.*
What is it about mushrooms and their mycelium that makes them so potentially valuable to your health?*
Beta glucans and proteoglycans are the primary biologically active compounds in mushroom fruit bodies and mycelia that support the immune systems of humans, and some animals, too.* Beta glucans are chains of polysaccharides, and proteoglycans are special proteins, often found in connective tissue.
And what makes mushroom-derived beta glucans so valuable to human health is this - their ability to help support the immune system.* And that may offer value to individuals who desire to support optimal immune function without over-stimulation. *
How do mushrooms support immune function?
The beta glucans found in mushrooms and their mycelium are large and complex long-chain molecules. What sets certain beta glucans apart are their unique side-branching patterns.
Just like a key and lock, the beta glucan compounds in mushrooms must “fit” perfectly with cellular receptor sites to support the immune system.*
By binding to receptor points on cells important to the immune system, the beta glucan polysaccharide compounds can have a positive effect on your immune cells.*
Each individual mushroom species contributes a variety of beta glucan molecular structures. When you combine several species, you multiply the number of immune cell receptor sites that may be activated.
While beta glucans have been the most studied component, mushrooms and their mycelium contain many other bioactive compounds and proteins that support immune function, too:*
- Alpha glucans
- Ubiquitin-like proteins
How Mushrooms Support a Healthy Gut and Digestion, Too*
Supporting healthy immune function isn't the only thing mushrooms can potentially do for you.*
Mushrooms’ complex nutritional matrix of nutrients, dietary fiber and fungal enzymes has been shown to support healthy digestion and gastrointestinal tract function.*
Mushrooms that include the extra-cellular digestive enzymes produced by the mycelium are a source of a variety of enzymes that can help promote optimal digestive function.*
And as you’ll soon see, how a mushroom is processed affects its contribution to your
Produced using fermentation, specially processed mushroom mycelium preparations can help promote optimal digestive function and more.*
The Connection Between Your Gut, Brain, and Immune Function
If you’ve been reading my site for any period of time, you’re probably aware that optimal health starts in your gastrointestinal tract.
And when you have a healthy digestive system, you can more completely digest food particles that might otherwise keep you from enjoying optimal health.
Most people don’t realize that 80 percent of your immune system lies in your gastrointestinal tract.
So, in my opinion, if you want to help support your immune system, you must support your digestion.
Not only that, but additionally, your gut originates from the same type of tissue as your brain.
When a fetus develops, one part of this “brain” tissue
turns into his central nervous system and the other part develops into his enteric nervous system.
These two systems are connected via the vagus nerve, the tenth cranial nerve that runs from your brain stem down to your abdomen.
This nerve explains why your gut and your brain influence each other so powerfully.
And that explains why your intestinal health can affect your mental and neurological health. Including fermented products into your daily diet is an effective way to naturally help optimize your gut flora and support your immune system and brain health, too.*
Mushrooms... A Timely Addition to the Mercola Line of Quality Supplements
With all the latest research on the benefits of fermented foods, I am constantly searching for ways to make it easier for you to include fermented products into your diet each day.
Especially since I know not everyone is willing to regularly eat the few true fermented foods that do exist, such as natto, kim chee, and sauerkraut. (For a more complete list of fermented foods, see box at right.)
I have located a source of mushrooms that, in my opinion, offers the ultimate in mycelium benefits and is a fermented product.
Before I tell you more about the mushroom varieties included in my Fermented Mushroom Complex, let me introduce you to the extraordinary company we’ve selected to produce our unique blend.
The company, Mushroom Matrix (M2), led by an expert team of Mycologists, has worked with mushroom species from around the world since the 1980’s.
Pioneers in the field, they developed the proprietary Solid State Fermentation (SSF) production methodology and equipment that allows for the production of health-supporting mushrooms and their mycelium on organic substrate (more about that in just a minute).*
M2 obtained 100% organic certification status for all of their products in 2006, and today produce only certified organic mushrooms in their labs in San Marcos, California, just north of San Diego.
And now I’m thrilled to announce that they’ve agreed to develop a proprietary blend just for us, available only through Mercola.com.
7 Species That Made The Cut for the
Fermented Mushroom Complex...
M2 selected seven species for the new proprietary Fermented Mushroom Complex, based on their expert research of purported health benefits:*
- Niu-Chang (Antrodia camphorata)
- Shiitake (Lentinula edodes)
- Reishi (Ganoderma lucidum)
- Maitake (Grifola frondosa)
- Turkey Tail (Trametes versicolor)
- Himematsutake (Agaricus blazei)
- Cordyceps (Cordyceps militaris)
Starting with the species that, in my opinion, is most intriguing, let me tell you about Niu-Chang, or Antrodia camphorata, or Antrodia for short.
Niu-Chang A Rare Gift Originating From Taiwan’s Old-Growth Rainforest
A unique and rare health-promoting mushroom species native to Taiwan’s old growth rainforest, Antrodia or “Niu-Chang” is virtually unheard of in the Western hemisphere.*
In the wild, this orange-red mushroom grows inside the hollow trunk of one specific kind of tree named “Chang tree” (or the “Cinnamomum kanehirai”), found exclusively in Taiwan’s mountain regions.
Only mature Chang trees over 100 years old provide the right conditions for Antrodia to grow. Considered “Taiwan’s National Treasure”, Antrodia, in the wild is found nowhere else in the world.
Luckily for us, M2 has figured out how to culture Antrodia mycelia in its lab in San Marcos, California.
Antrodia is not only one of the world’s most rare and expensive mushrooms, it’s said to possess an impressive array of health-promoting attributes.*
Both the fruit bodies and the mycelia have been shown by research studies to contain powerful, bio-active compounds.*
Some of the scientifically studied uses of Antrodia include:
- Supports immune function*
- Promotes normal cellular function and growth*
- Supports liver health*
- Promotes healthy blood circulation*
- Promotes healthy blood pressure levels already in the normal range*
- Helps support optimal gastrointestinal health and function*
- Promotes normal immune response*
- Helps supports optimal neurological health*
M2 was the first company in the Western world to successfully culture the mycelia of this unique mushroom species.
From Virtually Unknown to One of the Best Known
Shitake, or Lentinula edodes, is well-known and often used in Asian cuisine.
But did you know that both the fruit body and mycelium of the shitake are also highly valued in Asian cultures for their supposed health-promoting benefits?*
Cultivation of this mushroom has been practiced for over one thousand years.
The use of Shiitake dates back to at least 100 AD in China. In Traditional Chinese Practice, Shiitake was used to support a wide range of body functions.*
In vitro and animal research shows shitake to be useful for helping to:
- Support immune function*
- Support normal cellular growth and development*
- Support liver function*
- Promote optimal blood circulation*
- Support oral health*
- Promote healthy cholesterol levels already in the normal range*
- Promote normal response to stress as an “adaptogenic”*
The Oriental Mushroom with the Longest Recorded History of Use
Of all the health-promoting mushrooms, Reishi or Ganoderma lucidum is not only the most revered, but also has the longest recorded history of use.
Reishi is considered a “warming” ingredient in Traditional Chinese practice.*
Known as a “three treasure” herb, it’s thought by the Chinese to harmonize jung (life force), qi (energy), and shen (spirit).*
A richly colored mushroom, Reishi is found in the wild around the world, especially in subtropical regions. For our formula, M2 has developed a way to culture Reishi in its lab in San Marcos, California.
Active compounds are found in its fruit bodies, spores, and mycelia. Studies, including animal studies, suggest that they help:
- Support immune function*
- Support normal cellular growth and development*
- Promote the body’s normal detoxification processes*
- Support healthy blood pressure levels already in the normal range*
- Support liver and kidney function*
- Promote restful sleep*
- Help support optimal cellular energy*
- Support healthy blood sugar levels already in the normal range*
- Promote normal response to stress as an “adaptogenic”*
- Support muscular and joint comfort and movement*
- Help support optimal neurological and psychiatric health*
- Promote optimal blood flow and healthy heart muscle function*
Special Note: If you’re currently taking medication for high blood pressure, please consult with your health care practitioner before taking Fermented Mushroom Complex, and be sure they continue to monitor you throughout the duration of your use of this product.
The “Dancing Butterfly Mushroom” A Culinary Delight and Provides Beta-Glucans, Too
Almost resembling a butterfly in flight, Maitake, or Grifola frondosa, is a large mushroom characterized by multiple overlapping layers.
The fruit bodies and mycelia of Maitake provide immune-supporting beta glucans.* Compared to extracted fractions of Maitake, the whole powdered fruit body and mycelium show a wider variety of benefits.*
The synergistic chemistry of Maitake’s complex variety of polysaccharides, amino acids, proteins, enzymes and antioxidants contribute to its many suggested health-promoting benefits, including*:
- Supports immune function*
- Supports normal cellular development*
- May promote healthy glucose levels already in the normal range, as well as a normal insulin response*
- May help support weight management when combined with a healthy diet and exercise*
- May promote healthy blood pressure levels already in the normal range*
- May promote skin health*
The Turkey Tail One of the Most Researched and Respected...
The Turkey Tail, or the Trametes versicolormushroom, with its fan-shaped, colorful overlapping layers of fruit bodies truly resembling turkey tails, is a common inhabitant in the northern forests of the world.
And it also happens to have one of the longest histories of health-promoting use in China and Japan.*
Known for its supply of a particular type of polysaccharide PSK Turkey Tail has been widely studied. Some of its purported benefits include:
- Promotes respiratory health*
- May support urinary and digestive health*
- Supports immune health*
- Supports normal cellular growth*
Supports normal cellular growth*
Looks Like a Common Mushroom, But Is It Really?
Himematsutake (or Royal Sun Agaricus or Agaricus blazei species) falls into the same genus as the common button mushroom.
Richly almond scented, Agaricus boasts immune-supporting polysaccharides and other important cellular growth-supporting compounds, clearly setting it apart from its every day cousin.*
Other possible benefits attributed to Agaricus, in addition to supporting immune health and normal cell growth, include: *
- Helps promote optimal insulin response*
- Supports heart health*
- Supports liver health*
- Promotes optimal gastrointestinal health*
One of the Most Valued Herbs Used Traditionally in China...
Cordyceps, or Cordyceps militaris, has been used for centuries for a wide variety of health-promoting properties.*
Looking the least like a mushroom, long, slender Cordyceps fruit bodies and its mycelia both show important health-promoting properties.*
Compared to Cordyceps sinensis, researchers have found the mycelia of this variety of Cordyceps to provide additional bioactive ingredients.
has been shown in studies, to potentially help:
- Support athletic performance and energy*
- Support sexual function*
- Promote optimal circulation*
- Promote lung and respiratory health*
- Support kidney health*
- Support immune function*
- Support healthy cholesterol levels already in the normal range*
Chinese herbalists believe that Cordyceps replenishes Yin and Yang Jing and acts to help the body better respond to exertion, stress, or normal aging.*
I’m Bringing You What I Believe to be the BEST in Health-Promoting Mushrooms*
My Fermented Mushroom Complex contains 7 species of highly-valued, health-promoting mushrooms and their mycelium that provide an array of enzymes, nutrients, antioxidants and immune-supporting compounds.*
Additionally, I've made sure my blend is:
- Made from a whole food, and NOT from an extract
- Cultivated using organic oats instead of rice
- Contains mostly the mycelium and also fruiting bodies
- Produced using Solid State Fermentation (SSF)
- Biologically active
- Free of unhealthy levels of toxic heavy metals
- Grown and processed in the U.S.A.
- 100% Certified Organic
- Free of additives and fillers
As with all of the supplements I offer on my site, I refuse to sacrifice quality. What’s more, I will never recommend a supplement to you that I cannot fully embrace.
Whole Food vs. Extracts: Why I Believe Fermented Mushrooms Trump Isolated Mushroom Extracts
Whereas most mushroom products you’ll find on store shelves are made from “extracts”, our product is truly made from a whole food.
You already know how passionate I am about whole foods and supplements are no exception. When you isolate nutrients from their food source, you strip them of their valuable enzymes, co-enzymes, and other important co-factors responsible for a nutrient’s actions.
In my opinion, a whole food with its ratio of natural components designed by nature will always be a better choice than concentrations of individual elements.
A recent study shows that consuming food nutrients such as vitamins and minerals in their natural “whole food” matrix offers greater nutritional value than ingesting those same vitamins and minerals in an isolated, purified state.
Just like eating a fresh vegetable with its fiber and natural nutrients intact is the preferred way to get those nutrients, it’s no different with mushrooms.
When you extract certain bioactive compounds from mushrooms, such as important beta glucans and polysaccharides, you leave behind enzymes, coenzymes, and chelated mineral activators.
These valuable compounds support the mushroom’s bioactivity and how your body receives benefits from the compound. The extraction process can also damage many of the bioactive enzymes and proteins.
And here’s something else I must mention... Highly concentrated mushroom extracts can bring the potential for unintended consequences. As powerful as they can be, an overload of certain compounds in isolated extracts may shut down the important feedback your body depends upon.
The Mycelium’s Substrate Why Our Supplier Chose Oats Over Rice
In stark contrast to other mushroom products, the mycelium for Fermented Mushroom Complex is cultivated using 100% Certified Organic Whole Oats, complete with the outer hull intact.
Our supplier believes that oats make a better growing substrate for mycelium than hulled brown rice, the medium commonly used. Why?
- The outer hull protects the oat seed from oxidizing and going rancid
- Oats have a higher content of nutrients, protein, and fiber
- Oats’ cellulose, hemicellulose, and lignin stimulate the mushroom to activate a more complete set of metabolic and enzymatic pathways, vital to the mycelia’s bioactivity
- Oats are easy for the mycelium to digest
- Almost all the oats are digested during the fermentation process
- Oats’ plant beta glucans compliment the fungal beta glucans
Why M2’s Proprietary Solid State Fermentation Method
Delivers What I Consider a Better Product
M2 has developed and optimized a proprietary Solid State Fermentation (SSF) method to produce their mushrooms.
SSF is a process where the insoluble substrate in this case, organic whole oats is fermented with enough moisture, but without excess water. It results in higher quality production and yields while degrading the starch and enhancing nutrients.
In this process, the team cooks the oats to hydrate them to 55% moisture and to remove competing fungi, viruses, yeast, and bacteria.
This substrate is now ready for the mycelium starter to be added.
Grown in bags over the next 30 to 80 days, the mycelium gradually digests the oats until the grains vanish, leaving behind a solid white mass the mycelium biomass. Due to this length of time, almost all the oats are digested, unlike mushroom spawn, which is harvested after about seven days.
At this point and right before the biomass enters the erupting fruit body stage the team members open the bags and slowly dehydrate the biomass to reduce the moisture content. The use of controlled 118 degrees preserves live enzymes, protein structure, and the many bioactivities of each mushroom species.
Once the mushroom biomass reaches 5 percent moisture, it is milled into a fine powder and is ready for use.
Fermented Mushroom Complex is Safely Grown and Processed in the USA
With mushrooms, their growing environment matters, just as it does with other plants. Their intense ability to concentrate minerals and metals in their tissues makes polluted environments a real threat to their purity.
When grown in a polluted environment, mushrooms may contain lead, mercury, cadmium, arsenic, and hexavalent chromium, which can be toxic, depending on the levels.
Recently, Asian (and Chinese, in particular) mushroom products have been found to contain unhealthy levels of lead, cadmium, arsenic, and chromium, most likely from widespread water, soil, and air pollution.
Although M2 Mycologists select strains of mushrooms from around the globe and carry home tissue cultures of these extraordinary species, they propagate and produce all of their own mushrooms in their lab in San Marcos, California.
All critical points of quality control stay totally in their hands.
Further, they routinely test for heavy metals in the tissue samples, the organic oat substrate as well as the finished mushroom ingredients, so we’re assured of a product free of dangerous levels of heavy metals.
I Challenge You to Find a More Bio-Active, Cleaner Organic Mushroom Blend...
If you believe and are convinced in the value of mushrooms for your health, then there’s no question in my mind that we’ve found ourselves a winner with my Fermented Mushroom Complex.
When I first found out about the mushrooms in this blend Rare Antrodia... Revered Reishi... Cordyceps militaris... I suspected it was too good to be true.
But when I learned more about and met with the incredible team of Mycologists at M2, I had nothing but utmost respect for their vast knowledge of mushrooms’ health-promoting benefits.*
The tipping point for me came when I learned how their finished product was fermented. That cinched it for me.
I immediately requested a supply to be rushed to my office. I’ve been taking Fermented Mushroom Complex ever since the first day it arrived.
And now I’m more convinced than ever... we have struck gold.
The Countdown to Excellence... Fermented Mushroom Complex Emerges a Winner
This extraordinary blend of 7 organic mushrooms...
- Is made with the whole food mushroom and mycelium, not isolated extracts
- Is produced using fermentation, thanks to M2’s breakthrough SSF processing methods
- Is free of unhealthy levels of heavy metals
- Contains some of the rarest and most bio-active mushrooms*, some of which are barely known to the Western hemisphere
- Is grown and produced entirely in the U.S.
- Uses oats instead of rice for its substrate, adding valuable plant beta glucans and enhancing the mycelia’s bioactivity*
- Retains its potent bioactivity through carefully controlled processing methods*
- Beta-glucans promote healthy immune function within its normal range rather than over-stimulation like some herbal products*
- Was created just for Mercola.com and available nowhere else
Now it’s Your Turn. Are You Ready to Be a Winner?
Winning is, of course, a personal matter. For me, winning means taking control of my health and succeeding, emerging with robust and radiant health.*
Fermented Mushroom Complex can help support your health.* You now have what I consider the highest quality health-promoting mushroom product available on this side of the planet.
Above all, please don’t gamble with your immune system. Go with what I consider to be the winner and increase your chances of emerging as one yourself.* Order Fermented Mushroom Complex today.
Click or call now. We’re waiting to rush your supply of Fermented Mushroom Complex to you today.