Did you know that mushrooms are capable of preventing and reversing cancerous cellular changes? Medicinal mushrooms are getting a lot of attention lately.
Even those ordinary white button mushrooms sold in supermarkets have health benefits for your dog.
Why? Well, there’s a lot more research and more to come. But what we do know so far is pretty exciting.
That’s why I want to share why these medicinal mushrooms need to be part of your dog’s fight against cancer.
Why Use Medicinal Mushrooms For Cancer In Dogs?
Medicinal mushrooms will help protect your dog’s immune system and help her beat cancer. This is due to their anti-cancer, anti-tumor, and anti-bacterial compounds.
These are found in the stalk, caps, gills, and even the underground structures (mycelia) of every edible mushroom. And they offer trace minerals for added nutritional support.
Medicinal mushrooms also offer unique polysaccharides.
These interesting complex starches can be all-around health-promoters. They also have very few calories, no sodium and provide an excellent source of protein and B vitamins.
So let’s take a quick look at 5 Medicinal Mushrooms that can knock out cancer …
#1 Maitake (Grifolia frondosa)
This mushroom is thought to be more effective than any other fungi ever tested at inhibiting tumor growth. Studies show that it is best taken orally for those with active cancer.
It’s anti-cancer properties come from its bioactive extract D-fraction. And a 2004 in vitro study looked at its effect on three common types of dog cancer cells.
- CF33- Mammary cancer cells
- CF21-Connective tissue cancer cells
- CL1- Lymphoma cancer cells
They found that when using a D-fraction concentration of 1060ug/ml had the most impact on these cancer cells. With the biggest impact on the lymphoma cells. 90% of the cells died within 24 hours!
The research also showed that D-fraction had a strong ability to also inhibit the growth of the CF21 and CF33 cancer cells.
This makes it a great option if your dog is having a mass removed. Because you can lower the risk that those cancer cells will spread.
Researchers still need to look at running studies on dogs who currently have these cancers but you can see the lab testing so far is pretty impressive.
And testing in mice has shown that even using extreme doses of D-fraction does not have any toxic effects on the body.
Reach for Maitake mushroom supplements for your dog. Even if you choose to conventional chemotherapies. Human studies found it greatly improved their quality of life when taking toxic chemo agents.
#2 Reishi (Ganoderma lucidum)
Reishi is one of the most respected immune tonics in the world! Reishi Tea is the premiere tonic herb in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM).
Specifically, Reishi Gano 161. It’s a powerful preventative, liver tonic, and immune tonic. Even occasional use builds powerful immunity and reduces the risk of cancer.
So you can see why this one makes our list. You want to know that her immune system is at its best.
Most of the cancer research on Reshi focuses on how it supports cancer patients by boosting their immune systems. The polysaccharides (Gl-PS) provide anti-tumour support due to their ability to activate lymphocyte activity.
In the meantime it’s a great mushroom for your dog to help her feel as best she can during her cancer battle.
Consider using Reishi and shiitake together as they are great partners. The effects of one enhancing the effects of the other.
Reishi is best taken as a tincture, 20-40 drops, 3 times daily.
[RELATED: 6 Reasons Reishi Mushrooms Are Good For Your Dog ]
#3 Shiitake (Lentinus edodes)
Shiitake is highly medicinal. Regular consumption can increase the production of cancer-fighting alpha interferon.
The Shiitake mushroom produces lentinan, a β-glucan. And is known to be able to suppress and treat gastric cancer cells in humans and works to boost conventional chemotherapies.
Lentinan still needs some more research to better understand it …
… but what we currently know is that it helps by boosting the immune system.
By increasing the production of both killer T cells and NK cells. And it can help balance the right amount of cancer suppression cells with those that can kill cancer.
Shiitake is also great at reducing inflammation throughout the body. This helps ensure your dog has a long and healthy life.
Because chronic inflammation can lead to other diseases and cancers in your dog.
And if you’re already battling one type of cancer in your dog you don’t want another.
#4 Chaga (Inonotus obliquus)
Often considered “ugly”, Chaga is a hard to find fungi found on birch trees. Baba Yaga and other Russian herbalists favor it.
This is because Chaga is great at nourishing the immune system to support whole health.
And a study on mice found that long term use allowed them to maintain healthy body weight. As well as its ability to suppress cancer cells.
Long term use in humans has shown to be effective against Walker 256 carcinosarcoma cells and mammary adenocarinoma cells. Inotodial, a component in Chaga, provides these anti-cancer effects.
Chaga is also really high in antioxidants. This will help your dog fight free radical damage from pollutants and toxins in her environment.
And this is super important to feed her if shes’s taking any conventional chemotherapy agents…
…which are super toxic to healthy cells in addition to cancer cells.
[RELATED: Why Your Dog’s Food Needs More Antioxidants ]
#5 Turkey Tail (Coriolus versicolor)
This powerhouse mushroom is great at maintenance, protection, and restoration of immune health. So much so that Japan and China have it commercially available as drug.
It’s known as Krestin or PSK in Japan, and as PSP or Yun zhi in China. And it is utilized often for patients with immune diseases and cancer.
Turkey Tail is one of the world’s most researched medical mushrooms. With a hot water extract being the focus of its immune health support. Both in humans and animals.
There are more than 400 animal studies showing its impact on immune support. And a 2012 study looked at turkey tail’s success in treating dogs with hemangiosarcoma.
And the survival time increased in the ones treated with PSP. Pretty impressive in a cancer that is normally very aggressive with poor life expectancies at time of diagnosis.
And there are over a dozen human clinical studies published in peer-reviewed medical journals. If you really want to dig into the anti-cancer benefits Turkey tail further.
[RELATED: Turkey Tail Mushroom Uses For Dogs ]
Mushroom Bonus: They Are Also Great Prebiotics!
High fiber mushrooms are perfect for this task. Mushroom terpenoids are antimicrobial against pathogenic bacteria in your dogs gut. And they support the beneficial bacteria as a prebiotic.
A 2013 study looked at the polysaccharides found in the stem of shiitake and other mushrooms. The found they enhanced the survival rate of probiotics.
This offers you the ability to boost your dog’s immune system by supporting her gut health. Because 80% of her immune system is in her gut.
Choosing Which Medicinal Mushrooms To Feed Your Dog
There are many medicinal mushrooms on the market for dogs. Knowing which one is best for your dog can be the challenge.
Check with your holistic vet to see if there is a certain mushroom that would be best for your dog’s specific cancer. Often the recommendation is to use a mushroom blend or mix.
This allows your dog to have the various health benefits each medicinal mushroom offers.
When choosing a mushroom supplement you want to look for one that has been double extracted. And stay away from mycelium only products.
Look for a product that states something like “mushroom mycelial biomass powder cultured on organic oats.”
You want to avoid serving your dog raw mushrooms as they can be toxic, even if that particular mushroom is safe for dogs. When in doubt ask your holistic vet.
You can also check out Karen Stephenson’s blog: “Preventing Disease: Beta Glucan, Mushrooms And Dogs“ for more details on feeding fresh mushrooms to your dog.
Now I know hearing that your dog has cancer is hard. But at least now you know there are many ways medicinal mushrooms can help your dog battle cancer. Meaning more happy and healthy days to spend together.[Related: Canine Cancer Lessons: 11 Tools For Prevention]