I've tried many different mushroom supplements over the years, some that I feel had a positive effect and some that were just a waste of money. Below is a list of what I consider to be some of the best supplements, along with links to purchase them online.
I've included some of the most popular ones, such as cordyceps sinensis and reishi, along with blends of different mushrooms and lesser-known species such as lion's mane.
Medicinal mushrooms can help boost energy levels, strengthen the immune system, stabilize blood sugar, and reduce cholesterol. There are also mushroom supplements for cancer that can be taken along with traditional treatments. However, as with any supplement you should consult your doctor as they may cause an allergic reaction or interfere with a medication you are taking.
Each supplement below comes from a reputable company that I personally recommend. A final word of warning: you generally want to start small with supplementation. Take half the dose for a week and work your way up. Stomach unpleasantness may result if you begin with a large dose right away!
Host Defense is the company founded by renowned mycologist Paul Stamets, so it's no surprise that this is one of the best mushroom supplements for cancer and general immune support that you can buy.
This product is made up of 17 different organically grown mushroom species. It supports the immune system with polysaccharides, glycoproteins, ergosterols, triterpenoids and other myco-nutrients. Most people who take it (myself included) report fewer colds and better overall immune health.
Host Defense MyCommunity seems expensive at first, but when you break it down it's actually a really good deal. It's about $50 for 120 pills, and the dose is two per day. So you get great immune system support for roughly $25/month. This allows you to buy a bottle, take it for two months, and see how you feel.
I never get sick when I'm taking this, and the reviews on Amazon are extremely positive as well. If you buy only one mushroom supplement for general health, try this one first.
Reishi (Ganoderma lucidum) is another popular species of medicinal mushrooms. They're known to lower blood pressure, help with allergy symptoms, increase immune system functioning, and act as a general adaptogen giving you more vitality and energy.
You'd expect Nature's Way products not to work very well given how inexpensive they are, but I've had great results with this company. At about $7 for a bottle of 100 pills, you have the opportunity to try an effective Ganoderma lucidum supplement at a low cost (assuming 2 pills/day).
I don't believe these are organically grown, and they don't specify where the reishi is sourced from, but this is still a good option if you're low on money. Not everyone can afford the Host Defense products, so if you don't have much to spend give this one a try and see what it does for your health.
If you can afford a more expensive Ganoderma lucidum supplement, the reishi from Host Defense is the best out there. It's organically grown in the USA, and seriously helps the body adapt to stress and strengthen the immune system.
One of the reasons I started taking this product was its rumored effect on insomnia. Since reishi can promote a sense of calm and well-being, it often has a positive influence in helping sleep issues. I did find that it helped me feel better and stay asleep longer.
Host Defense is also good for asthma, allergies, fatigue, and immune system boosting (say goodbye to colds and sinus infections!). At $40 for 120 pills, you can take 2/day for $20 a month. It's ultimately a good deal for your health. I love this company!
Cordyceps sinensis is another popular medicinal mushroom, and one of my favorites. In addition to powerful immune system support, it helps the body be more effective in oxygen utilization. So it helps you breathe better, increases stamina, and improves libido.
It really does! Because it dilates blood vessels, thus increasing blood flow, cordyceps can act as a mild "natural viagra". Without going into great detail, I'll say I've found this to be true. ;)
Aloha Medicinals are cordyceps experts, and this is the single best cordyceps you can buy. They sell them in 3 packs of 90 capsules per bottle for $34. Depending on how many you take, that could be around a 2-3 month supply. A good deal for effective Cordyceps sinensis mushroom supplements.
If you want something slightly cheaper and just want to give cordyceps a shot for a month to see if it works for you, the Now Foods brand is a good alternative.
Now Foods is another company that seems too cheap to work, but it does. This product is a 90 pill bottle for $15, giving you a one month supply. It boosts energy, immunity, and stamina and the pills are 100% vegetarian. It's not organically grown, and I think the cordyceps is imported from China, but it's an effective option if you don't want to make the commitment to a lot of cordyceps.
Purchase the Aloha Medicinals brand if you can afford it up front as it's the same price (or less) over the course of 3 months. But if you're just looking to see some Cordyceps sinensis benefits on a smaller initial cash outlay, this one might be for you.
Turkey tail mushrooms (Trametes versicolor) are another medicinal known for boosting the immune system. They have a really good reputation as mushroom supplements for cancer, and many people take this product in addition to chemo and radiation.
As always, Host Defense makes an excellent product. This turkey tail supplement is from mycelium grown organically in the USA, and the capsules themselves are vegetarian. They have an amazing reputation, both in mycology circles and on Amazon.
At $45 for a 2 month supply, Host Defense turkey tails are a good investment in your health.
Lion's mane (Hericium erinaceus) is one of the most interesting medicinal mushrooms out there. In addition to immune system support, these funny-looking mushrooms are famous for increasing memory, improving mental clarity, and supporting the brain and nervous system.
People with alzheimers, Parkinsons disease, and other neurological challenges have reported improvements in their conditions after using this product. I don't promise any miracles, but I definitely think this one is worth a try for anyone with a nerve/memory disorder, or just anyone looking to enhance mental clarity.
As with all Host Defense products, their lion's mane supplement comes from organically grown mycelium in the USA. This one is $24/month, and definitely worth it if you see results.
Chaga (Inonotus obliquus) is a parasitic fungus that appears on birch trees. While not very pretty to look at, the fungus itself is a famous medicinal lauded for its antiviral, antibiotic, antioxidant, and anti-cancer properties. It's also another adaptogen, helping the body respond to stress and granting more energy and vitality.
Sayan is renowned for its chaga, and I've found them to be a very responsive and open company. They answer many questions on their Amazon page, and give helpful specific instructions on how much to take and how long to take it. (They advise taking it for four weeks and then giving your body a one week break).
This bottle is $23 for 90 pills, with a recommended dose of 2/day. So you get a month and a half supply for your investment from a company that offers some of the most powerful chaga.
Maitake mushrooms (Grifola frondosa) have gained a reputation for being a powerful immune system booster. Their long chained polysaccharides fight cancerous cells, regulate blood sugar, and can help control cholesterol and blood pressure. This is another popular mushroom supplement for cancer.
Mushroom Wisdom offers mushroom supplements that are well-known and effective. It's a big bottle too, with 360 capsules for about $44. They recommend 2/day (although you can take more), so it's a 3 month supply. A good deal for the money if you're looking for specialized or generalized immune system support.
Shiitake mushrooms (Lentinula edodes) are another species with a long history of culinary and medicinal use. In addition to containing many potent antioxidants, shiitake is thought to lower cholesterol and fight cancer. Despite the benefits, it's hard to find shiitake supplements. Probably because they're such a popular edible. Why take a pill when you can eat a delicious mushroom!
Still, if you want to start supplementing with shiitake, this product from Solaray is a good choice. It's cheap at $13 for 100 pills (600 mg each). They recommend a dose of one pill a day, which would make this a 3 month supply and you can't find a better deal on mushroom supplements than that! (Although honestly, I'd take 2/day).
Please note that prices of products may fluctuate due to demand, season, and harvest. Enjoy your mushroom supplements!