BY DR WONG KAH HUI
EDIBLE mushrooms represent an untapped source of nutraceuticals. They are treasured as functional food that can improve our health and quality of life.
Mushroom-based functional food are products from mycelia or the fruiting bodies of mushrooms and are being utilised by traditional physicians, herbalists, naturopathic practitioners, chiropractors, acupuncturists and herbal experts in Oriental medicine.
Hericium erinaceus also known as Lion’s Mane, Monkey’s Head, cendawan bunga kobis, Hedgehog Mushroom, Satyr’s Beard, Pom Pom Blanc, Igelstachelbart and Yamabushitake is one of the most popular culinary and medicinal mushrooms used in Asia, Europe and North America.
Lion’s mane is a unique-looking medicinal mushroom that has long white or cream-coloured spines (5-30cm). The fungus may be found “frozen” to the tree during winter.
Prior to 1960, Lion’s Mane was available only in the wild, and it was difficult to harvest it, as it grows as a saprophytic inhabitant on dead trunks of hardwoods in deep forests.
The first report on the cultivation of Lion’s Mane