by Morton Walker, DPM.
Widely used in Japan as an adjunctive treatment for cancer
- reprinted with permission from Townsend Letter for Doctors &
Patients, October 1998, issue #183
Did you know that numbers of different fungi have, for at least
40 centuries, been vital parts of mythology and medical practice
around the world? Fungally-derived phytochemicals find significance
among peoples along the Pacific Rim (e.g. Japan and Thailand),
on the Asian continent (i.e. China and Russia), plus inside darkest
Africa (especially for the Yoruba tribe of southwestern Nigeria).
Among the more than half-a-million varieties of fungi (with over
100,000 named species), mushrooms hold value especially for Europeans,
who have always appreciated the gastronomic excellence of both
the domestic- and wild-growing species. Gourmet cooks, especially
French, Belgian, and Austrian chefs, consider mushrooms “flowers
of the fall” and label them in their recipes with this loving
Are you aware that mushrooms are the perfect food for staying
trim, remaining healthy, and feeling a sense of wellbeing? Because
mushrooms contain only insignificant amounts of fat - predominantly
as unsaturated linoleic acid - eating them may help one to hold
onto a healthy cardiovascular system and stay free of malignancy.
Are you aware that most inhabitants of the United States, Canada,
Great Britain, Australia, and New Zealand are rather ignorant
about mushrooms? In fact, these English-speaking populations actually
dislike or fear ingesting mushrooms, because of “fungophobia”
- the view that they are associated with unsavory or “poisonous”
Do you have fungophobia? In contrast to your possible prejudice
or general misinformation, be advised that mushrooms possess medicinal
value far surpassing or at least on a par with such beneficial
phytochemicals (nutraceuticals) as oligomeric proanthocyanidines
(OPCs), d-alpha tocopherol (natural vitamin E), thymus gland extract,
CoEnzyme Q10, olive leaf extract, and particular probiotics.
Did you know that certain mushrooms are extremely safe to consume
and definitely provide the user with high quality healing nutrients
for a variety of serious health problems? Listed in the latter
category are those mushrooms belonging to the family of Polyporaceae
(also known as Basidiomycotinae). Among these Polyporacea species
is Coriolus versicolor which shows great biological activity for
the treatment of immune dysfunction.
Medicinal Mushroom User Steven Bailey, ND
“Of all medicinal plants, Coriolus versicolor is one of the safest
and most effective agents any doctor can use against chronic diseases.
This mushroom places no metabolic demand on the liver or extenuating
stress on the kidneys,” says Portland, Oregon naturopathic doctor
Steven Bailey, ND. “So when one looks at treatment risks for all
of the recognized phytochemical products, the Coriolus versicolor
mushroom exhibits one of the lowest treatment imperilments for
viral infection, malignant tumors, or immune system depression.
“I see Coriolus versicolor as having a very high degree of reliability
for boosting human and animal immune system function. It does
this in ways that are beneficial not only for the body's surveillance
or destruction of tumors but also as a protector against secondary
infection,” Dr. Bailey confirms. “The two immunologically active
fractions of this therapeutic mushroom negate or decrease side
effects connected with chemotherapy, surgery, and radiotherapy.
And those fractions offset other chronic immune imbalances, including
autoimmune diseases. Definitely I consider Coriolus versicolor
to be a potent immune system builder that's easy for the patients
to ingest as capsules.”
In private practice for 15 years, Dr. Bailey has taught courses
in nutrition and pharmacognosy at the National College of Naturopathic
Medicine in Portland. He has been using the Coriolus versicolor
polysaccharide extract for three years to relieve such illnesses
as hepatitis B and C, AIDS, herpes genitalis, cancer, general
immune suppression, and post-surgical recovery. Usually Dr.
Bailey doesn't administer the Coriolus polysaccharides as a single
treatment agent; rather, it becomes part of his fairly comprehensive
“Of course, some cancer patients take Coriolus versicolor even
while they engage in radiation treatment or chemotherapy” Dr.
Bailey advises. “Or, the patients don't submit to chemotherapy
or radiotherapy at all but rely, instead, exclusively on nutritional
therapies with the mushroom as a main treatment ingredient.
For example, one of my patients, a 34 year-old woman working in
the health field consulted me with a cancer spreading at two sites
in her lungs. Orthodox treatment had been tried but no longer
was effective. She embarked on nutritional therapies and completed
six months of taking Coriolus versicolor. Radiological examination
then showed that all of her lung tumors had disappeared. Seeing
her current progress, orthodox medicine probably would declare
this patient to be cured.”