Everything you need to know about medicinal mushrooms; Interview with Jeff Chilton with 40+ years experiences in the mushroom business

The ever-increasing popularity of medicinal mushrooms has led to the industry to boom, and today many companies sell mushroom products. But not all mushroom supplements are created equal – in our conversation, Jeff walks us through in detail everything you, as a savvy and well-educated consumer, need to know about mushrooms including what makes mushrooms so healthy, how to choose a top-quality mushroom supplement (make sure that you are NOT unknowingly consuming grains instead of mushrooms!), some of the key health components in mushrooms such as beta-glucans, ergothioneine and sterols, and a lot more!


2:50 What makes mushrooms so healthy and beneficial? Fibers, beta-glucans and much more. 
6:30 Mushrooms – the forgotten food that promote longevity 
9:30 Beta-glucan 101 
15:00 Mushrooms in Japan/Asia
20:20 Could Jeff have predicted the current level of mushroom appreciation?
23:20 Beverages, chocolate and other products with mushroom extracts 
26:20 How to choose high-quality mushroom supplements
31:20 Shocking truth about grain-grown mycelium sold as mushroom supplement
38:30 Telltale signs for false mushroom products
41:00 How Jeff makes sure his mushroom product is certified organic and tested for harmful chemicals
47:00 Dried mushroom powders vs. mushroom extracts: the latters are much more concentrated
50:40 Drugs made from mushrooms, PSK, Lentinene made from shitake, D-fraction made from maitake
53:10 Greenhouse vs. wood log grown mushrooms; do their nutritional profiles differ?
58:00 Where does Jeff see the mushroom business is going to?
60:20 Ergosterol, Vitamin D2


Jeff’s mushroom extracts for industry (B2B):
Jeff’s mushroom extracts for consumer:
Check out my tasty medicinal mushroom recipes from Japan!
Creamy mushroom sauce with maitake:

Grilled vegetables with shiitake on raspberry balsamic sauce:

Baked salmon with creamy mushroom sauce and pomegranate:


My medicinal mushrooms trip so far; how I found mushroom supplements that work for me

Medicinal mushrooms have become darlings of biohackers, health enthusiasts and alike. New mushroom products are popping in the marketplace, like the mushroom themselves in rainy autumn forests!

Coming from Japan, where many medicinal mushrooms like shiitake, maitake, and shimeji, are staples of its culinary culture, and their health benefits widely known, I open-handedly embraced the idea to incorporate these beneficial mushrooms in my life beyond in the form of tasty meals.


Medicinal mushroom recipe: Gomokugohan (Cooked rice with vegetables, mushroom, and chicken)

Cooked rice with different toppings, gomokugohan in Japanese, (means “rice with five toppings”) is a delicious way to incorporate different medicinal mushrooms in your diet.

Like other mushrooms shimejis are high in fibre and contain both water-soluble and water-insoluble fibres. The former forms gel-like substance in the gut and helps to regulate bowl movements. There are different varieties of shimejis, and bunashimejis, most common kind of shimejis available in Japan, typically contain 3.7 g of fibre per 100g. They also contain a decent amount of potassium (380 mg/100 g), vitamin B1 (0.16 mg/100g) and vitamin B2 (0.16 mg/100 g).

In Japan shimejis are known for their ornithine content, a amino acid-like molecule that studies show to help with physical recovery, such as exercise fatigue. Many popular energy drinks in Japan contain ornithine for this reason. But who needs a supplement when you can get it in this delicious and healthy recipe!

Serving: 6-8


3.5 dl Rice. Japanese sticky rice works best but you can use other types as well such as basmati


70 g Burdock

1 small Carrot, cut into 5 mm x 1.5 cm sticks

100 g shimeji, chop off the cups

100 g Maitake, shop off the cups and chop into 1 cm cubes

200 g Chicken thigh file, chopped into 1 cm cubes

4 dl Dashi (Japanese bouillon). If you are unfamiliar, see the tip below

2 Tbs Mirin, see tip below

2.5 Tbs Soy sauce

Cooking Steps:

1. If using Japanese rice (sticky, short and round kind), rinse it with water several times. After rinsing, let the rice stay on a strainer to strain excess water.

2. Peel the burdock. Make the peeled burdock into thin strips using a peeler. The strips should be thin like peeled vegetable skin and about 2-3 cm long.

3. Pour the dashi, mirin, and soy sauce in a medium pot. Add the chicken cubes, burdock strips, carrot sticks, shimeji and maitake. Cook on a medium heat. When it starts boiling, lower the temperature to low medium. Continue to cook for about 7 minutes until the vegetables are soft. Strain the mix saving the liquid.

4. To another medium-size pot transfer the rice and add the topping mixture. Add 4.5 dl of the cooking liquid. Put the lid on the pot.

5. Cook the pot on a low temperature for 3 minutes. Then raise the temperature to high, allowing the liquid to boil. When the pot start steaming, lower the heat to medium so that

the pot is constantly steaming for about 5 minutes. When the liquid has almost disappeared, lower the temperature to low and continue to cook for 5 more minutes or until all the liquid has evaporated.

6. Let the rice to set in the steamy pot for about 5 minutes. This step is called murasu in Japanese.

7. Serve and enjoy!


Dashi: there are different varieties of dashi, and the most common ones are katsuodashi made with flakes of dried bonito fish, niboshidashi, made with dried small sardines, and kombudashi, made with kombu seaweed. For this recipe I recommend kombudashi, as its mild taste is a perfect fit to the rice. To made kombudashi, put a 5×5 cm piece of kombu into 4 dl of water. Let it soak for 2-3 hours and then heat the water but avoid boiling. Take out the kombu, and you have the dashi you need for the recipe.

Mirin: if you don’t have mirin you can substitute it with a 50:50 blend of sake and honey. Blend 1 Tbs of sake with 1 Tbs of honey to substitute for the mirin in this recipe