· By Richard Gray
Agaricus Blazei Mushroom: Everything You Need to Know
Mushrooms have evolved in recent times from food ingredients in a stew or salad to sachets and capsules for medicinal health benefits.
There are many kinds of medicinal mushrooms that have been used for hundreds of years in traditional medicine and are now becoming more popular in the modern world.
Some of the most popular medicinal mushrooms on the market today are Lion’s Mane, Reishi, Chaga, and Cordyceps.
These medicinal mushrooms are prized for their ability to boost the immune system, reduce inflammation, fight fatigue, and improve cognitive function. They contain a wide range of bioactive compounds that have been shown to have numerous health benefits and are increasingly being studied for their potential to treat a range of health conditions.
One specific type of mushroom that has gained attention recently is the Agaricus Blazei mushroom.
In this blog post, we will uncover where this mysterious medicinal mushroom comes from, provide evidence of its health benefits, and advise how you can incorporate this mushroom into your diet.
We will draw attention specifically to its healing properties for cancer patients and how this mushroom can fight tumor growth.
Where Does Agaricus Blazei Come From?
Agaricus blazei Murrill (ABM), also known as the "Brazilian mushroom," is a popular medicinal mushroom originally native to a small village, named Piedade, in the highland areas of the Atlantic forest, near Tauape, in the province of Sao Paolo, Brazil. (1)
In fact, the mushroom is sometimes referred to as "Cogumelo do Sol" or "Sun Mushroom" in Brazil, due to its affinity for growing in warm, sunny climates.
Agaricus Blazei was actually first discovered in a small town in Brazil, by a Japanese grower and researcher named Takatoshi Furumoto who sent it to Japan in 1965 for investigation.
Japan eventually adopted the term "Himematsutake," which translates to "a mushroom native to Brazil," as its common name.
What Do Agaricus Blazei Mushrooms Look Like?
Blazei mushrooms range in size from tiny to moderate; they can be found alone or in small groups; their caps are rounded and convex; and their bodies are short and stocky.
The smooth cap ranges in color from white, brown, to grey and has silk-like fibers that develop into tiny scales as the mushroom matures.
Under the cap, the gills begin as white, turn to pink, and then to brown with age, and are compactly arranged, growing closely together. The cap connects to a truncated earthen white stem that is semi-thick, spongy, and crumbly in consistency.
When young, the stem or stipe is dense, but as it ages, it becomes hollow.
Interesting fact: Blazei mushrooms are known to have a unique almond, marzipan-like aroma, and a green, earthy, and nutty flavor.
What is Agaricus Blazei Good For?
The mushroom is traditionally believed to fight physical and emotional stress, stimulate the immune system, improve the quality of life in diabetics, reduce cholesterol, prevent osteoporosis and peptic ulcer, treat circulatory and digestive problems, and fight cancer. (2)
But let’s take a look at what evidence there is to support these claims...
Ability To Stimulate The Immune System
These mushrooms are packed with an incredible array of nutrients, the most prominent reason for these benefits lies in their polysaccharide content, which the scientific community has credited for the mushroom’s ability to powerfully influence the immune system in a manner unique to the Agaricus blazei.
Using ethanol and hot water extracts, many in vitro experiments have shown that both the mycelial and fruiting bodies of ABM l have immunostimulant and immunomodulatory effects. However, the results are not always the same; sometimes they are different.
Innate immunity is the component of the immune system that deals with immediate defense mechanisms. It is primarily controlled by phagocytes, which are the body's first line of defense against viruses and other invading invaders.
Studies have found that immune-boosting properties of ABM come from the various beneficial polysaccharides in the form of highly structured β-glucans they contain. (4)
These compounds are well-known for their extraordinary capacity to alter the body's immune response and provide preventing disease. According to numerous research, the polysaccharides present in this mushroom affect the synthesis of antibodies and serve as "biological response modifiers". (5) (6) (7) (8)
These studies on cells in a lab dish and on animals show that Agaricus activates white blood cells like macrophages, dendritic cells, granulocytes, and natural killer cells.
Agaricus is also a "modulator and educator" of the immune system. This means that it works in a smart way. If the immune system is overstimulated, as can happen with auto-immune disorders, it attacks everything in sight, including the body's own tissues. (9)
In this case, Agaricus will turn down the immune system and retrain it so that it responds more selectively and effectively to invaders.
On the other hand, if the immune system is weak, Agaricus will boost it and make it work better so it can deal with real threats.
Due to the evidence provided, we can confidently say that ABM contains immune-boosting properties, and consuming this mushroom can benefit humans, like you and me.
The mushroom Agaricus blazei Murill has proven antitumor activity for some types of cancer, and the use of this natural product can improve health and increase the patient's immunity. (10)
ABM is a known traditional remedy against cancer. The active compounds contained in it are polysaccharides, known to exert inhibitory effects against tumors indirectly by enhancing immune function. (11)
Due to the presence of its beta-glucan composition, this mushroom can be utilized as an anticancer agent. Scientists found that using certain chemicals like chloroform, n-hexane, ethylacetate, and dichloromethane to extract ABM can help fight cancer cells in MCF-7. This extract can be established as an anticancer agent in MCF-7 cells. (12)
Agaritine contained in ABM showed an antitumor effect against leukemic cells in vitro. It was very different from beta-glucan, which indirectly stops the growth of tumor cells. The way it works is through a process called apoptosis. Agaritine exerts an antitumor effect directly against leukemic tumor cells in vitro. (13)
Additionally, a steroid known as blazein obtained from this mushroom was found to promote cell death also structural variation suggestive of apoptotic chromatin condensation in lung cancer cells of humans. This chemical has also proven to work the same way on stomach cancer cells as it does on lung cancer cells. (13) (14)
ABM has also been found to induce apoptosis or programmed cell death in ovarian cancer cells of humans. (12)
ABM showed antitumor effects in mouse models of fibrosarcoma, myeloma, prostate cancer, ovarian cancer, and lung cancer. It also worked against gynecological cancer and leukemia in human studies, which measured the natural killer cell activity and the quality of life. (15)
Due to the evidence provided, we can confidently say that ABM has the ability to inhibit the growth of tumors such as cancer.
Further reading: Can Agaricus Blazei Improve Quality Of Life During Chemotherapy?
Not only are the immune-modulating properties of Agaricus blazei of interest to those who want to maintain a strong immune system during cancer therapy, but also its ability to improve quality of life.
According to the researchers, patients who took the Agaricus blazei mushroom showed improvements in multiple areas, including appetite, hair loss, physical weakness, and emotional stability. (9)
Taken together, this suggests that supplementing with Agaricus blazei might be beneficial for patients undergoing chemotherapy in order to support a better quality of life.
As a supplement in general, Agaricus Blazei contains nutritionally significant nutrients, such as essential amino acids, vitamins, minerals, proteins, antioxidants, enzymes, dietary fibers, natural sterols, and immuno-stimulating polysaccharides.
Overall, Agaricus Blazei can be effective with preventive support in maintaining health and promoting healing through immune system enhancement.
Hepatitis B is a global health problem. The use of complementary and alternative medicine has been popular among patients with hepatitis B.
A 1-year open-label pilot study aimed to observe whether Agaricus Blazei Murill extract improves liver function in patients with hepatitis B.
At the end of the study, the mean level of aspartate aminotransferase and alanine aminotransferase decreased from 246.0 (+/- standard deviation [SD] 138.9) to 61.3 (+/- SD 32.6) IU/L and 151.0 (+/- SD 86.9) to 46.1 (+/- SD 22.5) IU/L, respectively. (16)
In conclusion, the initial observation seems to indicate the potential benefit of ABM extract in normalizing liver function of patients with hepatitis B. Controlled clinical studies with larger samples should be conducted in the future.
Due to the need for more research and studies around ABM and liver health, we can claim that ABM is a sustainable solution for hepatitis and liver function.
May Help Hypercholesterolemia Patients
Hypercholesterolemia is the medical term for high cholesterol. Your body needs some cholesterol to make hormones and digest fatty foods. But too much raises the risk of heart disease and other cardiovascular problems.
One study shows, thirty-two female Fisher rats were divided into four groups and given the standard AIN-93 M diet (C), this diet + 1 % A. blazei (CAb), a hypercholesterolemic diet with 25 % soybean oil and 1 % cholesterol (H) or this diet + 1 % A. blazei (HAb) for 6 weeks. (17)
This resulted in a significant decrease in abdominal fat weight, to values close to those of groups C and CAb. Supplementing the hypercholesterolemic diet with A. blazei promoted a significant reduction in total and non-HDL (bad) cholesterol, as well as in the atherogenic index, as compared to group H, and this effect was more pronounced in the serum.
There was no hepatotoxic effect caused by the supplementation of the diets with the mushroom. This study concluded that in their experimental model and in the concentration used, A. blazei was effective in improving the lipid profile of the animals. (18)
Does Agaricus Blazei Have Side Effects?
Will Agaricus Blazei make me high? The short answer is, no.
There is nothing hallucinogenic about this mushroom extract. There are no hallucinogenic ingredients in NutriMyco products; instead, they promote health.
But there are a few important factors to consider before consuming this type of medicinal mushroom:
- Pregnancy and breastfeeding: There is little information regarding the usage of Agaricus mushrooms during pregnancy and breastfeeding. To be on the safe side, refrain from using.
- Liver disease: One study showed evidence of severe hepatic damage one three cancer patients who were consuming Agaricus blazei extract. In one patient, liver functions recovered gradually after she stopped taking the Agaricus blazei, but she restarted taking it, which resulted in the deterioration of the liver function again. (3) We would advise not consuming this mushroom if you are suffering from liver disease.
- Surgery: According to WebMD, “Agaricus mushrooms might lower blood sugar. This might interfere with blood sugar control during surgery. Stop using Agaricus mushrooms at least 2 weeks before a scheduled surgery.”
Where Can I Get Agaricus Blazei and How Do I Use It?
If you're looking for a delicious way to incorporate the amazing benefits of Agaricus Blazei into your daily routine, look no further than Nutrimyco!
Our online shop offers premium-quality supplements made from this powerful mushroom, making it easier than ever to enjoy its many health benefits.
One of the easiest ways to incorporate Agaricus Blazei into your diet is by taking Nutrimyco's supplements. Our powder and liquid extracts are easy to take, and you can use them in a variety of ways.
Simply mix our powder supplement into your morning smoothie or sprinkle it over your breakfast cereal. Or, take our liquid extract with your morning glass of warm water for a quick and easy dose of this amazing mushroom.
If you prefer to eat your supplements, you can try our Agaricus Blazei liquid extract, which can be added to soups, stews, and sauces for an extra nutritional boost. Our extract is made from the highest-quality mushrooms, ensuring that you get the most potent and effective form of this superfood.
At Nutrimyco, we're dedicated to bringing you the best possible products made from the finest ingredients. Our supplements are free from harmful additives and ensure that you get the most potent and effective form of Agaricus Blazei.
So why wait? Visit our online shop today and start enjoying the many health benefits of Agaricus Blazei.
- Mizuno TK. Agaricus blazei Murrill medicinal and dietary effects. Food Rev Int. 1995;11:167–72. [Google Scholar]