Return to site

Medicinal Mushrooms and Immune System Response

Latest research has concluded that therapeutic doses of medicinal mushrooms and modified citrus pectin have positive effects at mitigating a protein in the body called galectin-3. Galectin 3 can spur a cascade of inflammatory cytokine signals that can end up causing a life-threatening, over-active immune response. AKA a cytokine storm.

Researchers behind this discovery suggest that galectin-3 blockers may be able to suffinciantly block replication of the covid 19 virus… AND help to reign in the cytokine storm, if it gets to that stage.

Typical Cytokine Storm Concerns

Cytokines are special immune proteins that play important roles in cellular communication. Among other actions, they help direct your immune system on when and where to attack, and when to retreat.

Examples of cytokines include:

· TNF-α (tumor necrosis factor alpha)

· IL-1β (interleukin-1-beta)

· IL-6 (interleukin-6)

· IL-8 (interleukin-8)

· IL-18 (interleukin-18)

· CRP (C-reactive protein)

· Fibrinogen

When your body releases a surge of cytokines that increase the inflammatory immune response, it can be challenging to reverse their course. An overactive immune response can attack normal healthy tissue, and may result in numerous damaging effects, such as:

· High fever

· Uncontrolled inflammation

· Sudden drop in blood pressure

· Blood clots

· Fluid in the lungs

· Multiple organ failure

· Death

If the galectin-3 triggering an inflammatory cytokine storm affect is slowed down or blocked, symptoms may then act more like a bad cold. Some may not experience any symptoms at all. This is why blocking and or slowing galectin-3 offers an important strategy for helping to defeat aggressive viral infections.

What we know:

-Modified Citrus Pectin:

Derived from citrus peels and modified for absorption, modified citrus pectin (MCP) is shown in a fast-growing number of published studies to bind to galectin-3 and stop it in its tracks. At the same time, MCP reduces the expression of inflammatory cytokines such as TNF-α, IL-1β and IL-18, thus helping to avoid or halt a cytokine storm.

-Botanically-Enhanced Medicinal Mushrooms:

For thousands of years, practitioners have revered medicinal mushrooms for their remarkable array of healing and protective properties. Medicinal mushrooms are rich in therapeutic compounds that help to train your immune system to better fight invaders, reduce inflammation responses and protect organs and tissues. Currently, researchers around the world are searching for ways to use medicinal mushrooms in the fight against emerging global pathogens.

Many species of mushroom boast an exhaustive list of benefits—for immunity and beyond. Top medicinal varieties include:

  • Turkey tail (Trametes versicolor): Rich in potent antioxidant compounds, this mushroom provides significant immune system support, while controlling inflammation 
  • Reishi (Ganoderma lucidum): Supports optimal immune response and calms overactive inflammation 
  • Agaricus (Agaricus blazei): Reduces inflammatory cytokines, has potent antioxidant activity, helps control blood sugar
  • Cordyceps (Cordyceps sinensis): Adaptogenic support to promote healthy stress responses, helps balance immune responses to prevent overreaction, enhances respiratory health and tissue oxygenation, reduces inflammation, supports antioxidant activity 
  • Umbellatus (Polyporus umbellatus): Supports a healthy immune response, reduces inflammation, protects liver function
  • Maitake (Grifola frondosa): Supports immunity against infections, helps balance blood sugar, helps fight cancer 

Medicinal mushrooms offer powerful balancing support to optimize your immune system responses. And when they’re specially cultivated with immune-supporting herbs, it significantly increases their healing potential.

When you combine the immune modulation support of therapeutic quality medicinal mushrooms, together with the galectin-3 blocking powers of MCP, you give your immune system the advanced support it needs to help defend you against an increasing number of health threats.

Fortunately you can find these immune support products in our online pharmacy!


Chen L, Liu HG, Liu W, Liu J, Liu K, Shang J, Deng Y, Wei S. [Analysis of clinical features of 29 patients with 2019 novel coronavirus pneumonia]. Zhonghua Jie He He Hu Xi Za Zhi. 2020 Feb 6;43(0):E005. Chinese. doi: 10.3760/cma.j.issn.1001-0939.2020.0005. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 32026671.

Ruan Q, Yang K, Wang W, Jiang L, Song J. Clinical predictors of mortality due to COVID-19 based on an analysis of data of 150 patients from Wuhan, China [published correction appears in Intensive Care Med. 2020 Apr 6;]. Intensive Care Med. 2020; 46(5): 846-848. Doi: 10.1007/s00134-020-05991-

Eliaz I. Letter to the Editor: Not all modified citrus pectins are the same: size does matter. Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol. 2019 May 1; 316(5): H1232-H1233. doi: 10.1152/ajpheart.00118.2019. PMID: 31070458; PMCID: PMC6580396.

Hetland G, Johnson E, Bernardshaw SV, Grinde B. Can medicinal mushrooms have prophylactic or therapeutic effect against COVID-19 and its pneumonic super infection and complicating inflammation? [published online ahead of print, 2020 Jul 13]. Scand J Immunol. 2020;e12937. doi:10.1111/sji.12937

Wachtel-Galor S, Yuen J, Buswell JA, Benzie IFF. Ganoderma lucidum (Lingzhi or Reishi): A Medicinal Mushroom. In: Benzie IFF, Wachtel-Galor S, editors. Herbal Medicine: Biomolecular and Clinical Aspects. 2nd ed. Boca Raton (FL): CRC Press/Taylor & Francis; 2011. Chapter 9. PMID: 22593926.

Guo Z, Zang Y, Zhang L. The efficacy of Polyporus Umbellatus polysaccharide in treating hepatitis B in China. Prog Mol Biol Transl Sci. 2019;163:329-360. doi: 10.1016/bs.pmbts.2019.03.012. Epub 2019 Apr 9. PMID: 31030753.