Influenza vaccines are available everywhere, from clinics to pharmacies to supermarkets. While disease control and prevention centers report that the only side effects of flu vaccines are redness, pain and swelling at the injection site, low fever and pain, others believe that vaccines contain mercury and other problematic materials and more lethal from the vaccine itself.
But long before there was a vaccine targeted, there was fungus to fight the flu. The Chinese have used mushrooms as medicine for thousands of years, and recent scientific studies have confirmed the effectiveness of mushrooms in strengthening the immune system. And a strong immune system is your best defense against the flu now.
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The most commonly eaten edible mushroom in the world is the button mushroom, which is believed to have no nutritional or medicinal value for years.
However, recent studies have found that low-level buttons, crimino and portobello contain as much antioxidant power as their Asian counterparts, which have been valued for their preventive and healing properties for centuries.
Specifically, the buttons contain, inter alia, polysaccharides and ergothionein, which activate the immune system and act as radical scavengers.
In Asian medicine, shiitake and maitake mushrooms, which are now widespread in the US market, have succeeded in strengthening the immune system and fighting cancer so they are now testing HIV. Enoki mushrooms have also been shown to be beneficial for the immune system.