Here is the first book of its kind in English, at least to my knowledge. The Reishi mushroom (Ganoderma lucidum), known as Ling zhi in Chinese, has been used for centuries in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) for its anti-inflammatory properties and as a general tonic, among other uses.
Reishi (its Japanese name and its most commonly used name in the U.S.) is gaining popularity in the U.S. herb markets, based partially on the increased acceptance of many other Chinese herbs, but also on numerous studies that indicate a role for Reishi mushrooms in immune therapy.
This book examines the various historical and folklore uses of Reishi in China and Japan, its clinical uses, and its possible future in Western medicine as an adjunct treatment in cancer chemotherapy and radiation therapy. The volume also has various appendices, including a perspective of Reishi with other Ganoderma species and other tonic mushrooms, discussion of "active" ingredients, and numerous technical references and an index.
This work will, no doubt, find a willing audience among mycologists and other mushroom and fungi fans, herbalists, acupuncturists and other practicioners of TCM, health professionals, researchers, and consumers. The awareness of Reishi mushrooms as examples of the role that Chinese medicinal mushrooms can offer to public health is just beginning. This timely book will accelerate that trend.
Article copyright American Botanical Council.