Everybody knows and loves mushrooms. When people first hear about mushrooms, they often imagine them loaded on pizzas or as a starter soup. I, on the other hand, hear the rings of adventure and medicinal perks that come with them.
Sometimes, the word mushroom elicits fear due to its lethal toxicity. A mushroom mistake is plainly fatal but with careful forage, you can stock your pantries with a good load of nutrients and medicinal benefits.
Today is a good day to change your life as we are about to unfold the 3 most easily identifiable and highly-prized immune-boosting mushrooms you can forage in New Jersey.
Turkey Tail mushroom
Turkey tail mushroom is an edible polypore fungus that can be easily identified by its multiple colored rings on its caps, ranging from red to brown. Watch out for the false turkey tail that serves as a decoy and has orange hues. The flesh of the turkey tail has a leathery texture and its cap is triangular or round with a fine heath of hair.
Turkey tail mushroom is a fine treat on the decaying logs. It is highly popular due to its immune-boosting property. It contains polysaccharide-K (PSK) that is immensely invigorating for the weakened immune system.
Turkey tail mushroom is bagged with phenols and flavonoids that not only reduce oxidative stress but also initiate protective mechanisms that inhibit cellular damage. It improves the health of the digestive tract and is used in conjunction with cancer treatment to enhance the chances of survival.
Lion's Mane mushroom
Lion’s mane is a mighty mushroom with a funny appearance that resembles the fur around the lion’s neck. It is known for its powerful memory-enhancing and brain-boosting capabilities.
Always go for the white lion’s mane as the pink ones aren’t much flavorful. They are a rare treat and can only be found on the dead and decaying logs of maple, oak, and birch tree.
Lion’s mane mushroom can protect the human body against pathogen infection by projecting antioxidative effects. It strengthens the activity of the immune system and upregulation of nerve growth factor and myelin to guard against neurological disorders, especially Alzheimer’s and Multiple Sclerosis.
Maitake is the dancing mushroom that grows from the sclerotium. It is a bit hard to find Maitake mushroom on account of its growth at the base of the typically old decaying trees of oak, elms, and maple trees.
Maitake mushroom looks a bit like chicken’s feathers, appearing as a bunch of flattened caps that overlap each other. Maitake mushroom is a powerhouse of antioxidants, β-glucans, copper, potassium, amino acids, fiber, vitamin B, C, and D.
Maitake mushroom has been proven clinically to activate the complement system and encourages the macrophages and natural killer cells working to enhance the immune defense.
We encourage you to prepare for a trip to the forest and look for these 3 unmistakably gorgeous and medicinally fruitful mushrooms. We are sure you won’t head back to your homes empty-handed.