Do you love mushrooms? Did you know certain mushrooms may be able to improve your fertility? Maitake (Grifola frondosa), also called “hen of the woods,” is a therapeutic and culinary mushroom that’s very popular in the natural health world. While probably best known for its role in strengthening immunity and in natural therapies for cancer, maitake also offers benefits for fertility. Maitake mushrooms especially play an important role in overcoming fertility challenges caused by PCOS and uterine fibroids.
A Look Into Maitake’s Fertility Benefits
For PCOS, maitake helps in numerous ways:
1. Maitake decreases insulin resistance and improves body balance. Research shows an extract from Maitake, called Sx fraction, reduces insulin resistance, normalizes glucose levels and balances lipids (fats) in the body- all promising news for improving fertility for women with PCOS.
2. Maitake promotes normal ovulation. By reducing insulin resistance, maitake helps to balance androgen levels, which are often high in PCOS and create a disruption in normal ovulation. In one Japanese study, maitake Sx fraction induced ovulation for 76.9% of women with PCOS. Adding maitake to the regimen even helped those who failed to respond to the fertility drug, Clomid, used by itself.
3. Maitake helps normalize tissues. Maitake mushrooms have a strengthening effect on body tissues. Natural health practitioners share their clients have fewer problems with polycystic ovaries when working with dietary approaches and supplementing with maitake mushroom.
Maitake normalizes the body from uterine fibroids:
Today, maitake is widely used in natural approaches for breast tumors and uterine fibroids. Like other medicinal mushrooms, maitake possesses strong anti-tumor activity. This means it encourages a healthy body environment and fights against the development of abnormal tissue. Maitake supports your body’s natural immune response against cancerous tumors and non-cancerous growths like fibroids and cysts. Used regularly, maitake may even help decrease fibroid size and discourage new fibroid growth.
Ways To Use Maitake
1. Cook with maitake. Its rich, meaty flavor enhances sauces, soups, stir fry, and casseroles. Thinly slice, rehydrate and add maitake to the recipes of your choice. Start with about ¼ cup and adjust to create the flavor you like. Fresh maitake is also good seared or grilled like steak. Use maitake in cooking a few times a week to give the immune system a natural boost. Tip: Always choose organic mushrooms to avoid toxic sprays used in conventional production.
2. Try Maitake supplements. For therapeutic use, a high-quality supplement is a good choice. Maitake is available in capsules, extracts or teas. For help with body balance and symptoms of PCOS, look for a supplement with Sx fraction, which has the most testing behind it. For support for abnormal tissue like fibroids or cysts, maitake works well in combination with herbs like Pau d’arco (Tabebuia impetiginosa), Goldenseal (Hydrastis canadensis) and Dandelion (Taraxacum officinale). For best results, use maitake mushrooms consistently for 1-4 months along with a Fertility Diet.
Try Maitake Mushrooms!
If you’re facing fertility challenges related to PCOS or uterine fibroids, consider adding maitake mushroom to your Natural Fertility Program. A complete program is often necessary for recovery and a return to fertility, but maitake can help you on your way.
- Chen J.T., Tominaga K., Sato Y., Anzai H., Matsuoka R. (2010, Dec.). Maitake mushroom (Grifola frondosa) extract induces ovulation in patients with polycystic ovary syndrome: a possible monotherapy and a combination therapy after failure with first-line clomiphene citrate. Journal of Alternative and Complementary Therapies;16(12):1295-9. Retrieved from: https://www.liebertpub.com/doi/abs/10.1089/acm.2009.0696?rfr_dat=cr_pub%3Dpubmed&url_ver=Z39.88-2003&rfr_id=ori%3Arid%3Acrossref.org&journalCode=acm
- Sillman, T. (2011, Feb.). Maitake Induces Ovulation in People With Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome. Retrieved from: http://www.naturalmedicinejournal.com/journal/2011-02/maitake-induces-ovulation-people-polycystic-ovarian-syndrome
- Kodama N., Komuta K., Nanba H. (2003, Winter). Effect of Maitake (Grifola frondosa) D-Fraction on the activation of NK cells in cancer patients. Journal of Medicinal Food; 6(4):371-7. Retrieved from: https://www.liebertpub.com/doi/10.1089/109662003772519949