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Interview with Mushroom Expert and Herbalist, Don Ollsin

Written by Real Mushrooms - Updated: June 28, 2024

Fungi, Foraging, & Functional Medicine

Watch the video interview between Real Mushrooms founder, Skye Chilton, and mushroom expert and Herbalist, Don Ollsin, as they answer some curiously interesting questions about medicinal mushrooms and the fungi world.

Video Topics & Timestamps

0:11 Introductions: Don & Skye

0:33 What's your favorite mushroom or mushroom product?

1:49 Turkey Tail gum

2:11 The differences between mushrooms & mycelium

9:36 Fungi organisms in nature & how to connect with them

12:17 Mushrooms as nature's "recyclers"

13:03 Mushroom growing/farming & extraction

18:00 Mushrooms & Ayurveda

25:48 How Don & Skye use mushrooms

30:10 Pairing mushrooms with other herbs

36:05 Mushroom show & tell, closing remarks


Visit Don Ollsin's website for more fungi facts and fun: 

Don Ollsin on Adaptogenic Mushrooms
Don Ollsin, Herbalist

As a professional herbalist (one of only 250 in North America registered with the American Herbalists Guild - AHG), mushroom expert, author, and process-oriented educator since 1972, Don Ollsin now wishes to pass down his wisdom and experience to a new generation of budding herbalists. Because of his love of the earth, his students, and teaching he is now offering a professional training service. This is for those who wish to learn the art and science of herbalism. In 2013 Don completed his MA in Environmental Education and Communication at Royal Roads University and is the author of Don is the author of Pathways To Healing: A Guide to Ayurveda, Herbs, Dreambody and Shamanism.


You can explore the variety of health supports that mushroom can offer by reading our article introducing you to 7 types of medicinal mushrooms and their benefits. Or, you can explore our lineup of mushroom extracts for purchase here.

A hand is holding a packet of Tremella mushrooms in a kitchen setting, perfect for a Spring Cleanse. Adjacent packets of "5 Defenders" and "Lion's Mane" mushrooms are also visible. A banner reads "Shop Mushrooms.

The Transcript

Don Ollsin (00:02):
Hi, I'm Don Olson from Ollsin Herbalist Healing Community.

Skye Chilton (00:08):
Hi, I'm Skye Chilton from Real Mushrooms.

Don Ollsin (00:11):
So we're doing this video to follow up on a panel that we did with two other experts on adaptogens and mushrooms. And so we're just going to go more specifically into some areas by going back and forth with some questions. So my first question to you, Skye is what's your favorite mushroom or mushroom product?

Skye Chilton (00:34):
Yeah, I'm a big fan of right now sort of Reishi and Turkey tail. It kind of varies definitely of what I've got in the cabinet at any given moment. , I do like our Five Defenders blend quite a bit, for a good all-around immune system performance blend. Ah, so that's made of a Reishi, Shiitake, Turkey tail and Chaga. And then we'll try to throw some Lion's mane in there, you know, every now and then as well.

Don Ollsin (01:04):
Cool. So, you mentioned Turkey tail and Reishi. I was up hiking on Oak Bluffs yesterday on Pender Island and it's one of my favorite trails. And I also have a favorite Oak tree up there and it's old and it's dying, so it's got Turkey tails growing on it. So I was able to, , and it has been so wet recently, I was able to actually chew up one. I mean I finally spit out a little bit, but I was able to cons e most of it. So know again, that's one of my favorite ones, partially for the amount of research that's been done on it. Secondly, and the fact that I can gather it myself and that of course as we've talked about before, is the Reishi.

Skye Chilton (01:51):
Yeah. It's, it's interesting that you say that. I was just reading a Christopher Hobbs book just before we started here and he has a piece about Turkey tail and talks about Turkey tail gum and how it can be quite chewy and you can just like take it off the tree while you're walking and throw it in your mouth and start chewing.

Don Ollsin (02:11):
It's the only conch I know you can do that.

Skye Chilton (02:13):
Yeah. Maybe like tough chicken of the woods

Don Ollsin (02:20):
Yeah. I haven't had that opportunity of finding that one here.

Skye Chilton (02:24):
Yeah, I don't see it very often, but it's softer for sure. It's not going to be as hard as like a Reishi or something.

Don Ollsin (02:35):
Skye again in the panel, you, I thought you answered the question really beautifully about the difference between mushrooms and mycelium, so you can elaborate a bit on that, but this particular video.

Skye Chilton (02:52):
Sure. Yeah. So mushrooms and mycelium are two different plant parts or fungal stages of these fungal organisms. The other primary stage being spores. And so typically spores will be out in the air around us, in the woods. I mean, they can even found them in upper parts of the atmosphere, but they will land somewhere and when the conditions are correct, they will germinate and they will start to grow into these very fine filaments called hyphae. And these hyphae will keep growing and start to fuse together and they will form what's called mycelium . And so the mycelium will be out in nature and it will be, kind of decomposing organic matter to, get sort of food per se by gaining nutrients. And then when the conditions are correct, it will produce a, what we call a mushroom. So that's also commonly referred to as a fruiting body.

Skye Chilton (03:51):
And the, mycelium is commonly referred to as the vegetative body. So it's kind of the overall, sort of a root system of this organism that lives on beyond, the mushroom, just like say an apple tree keeps going every year. So it's really important when we're talking with a mushroom and mycelium products to really differentiate the two, because there's a very big difference between how they are processed.

Don Ollsin (04:22):
So just briefly, what's the difference of the research on mycelium versus the fruiting body in terms of medicinal active constituents?

Skye Chilton (04:33):
Sure. So when we look at the overarching literature, the majority of it is done on mushroom extracts. , typically hot water extraction and, extraction is done just so that the cell wall of these, fungal species can really get broken down. So the cell wall is actually made up of chitin, which is the same material that crustaceans make their shell out of.

Skye Chilton (04:59):
So it's this very tough substance that we have a hard time digesting, which makes eating fresh mushrooms, a very good source of dietary fiber cause it'll just go through the stomach, doesn't get processed too much, but then ends up feeding our gut. But if we really want to get access to those active compounds, the important constituents in there, we need to do an extraction on this to break down that cell wall first. So we can access those compounds easier. And when it comes to mushrooms and mycelium, so there's different ways to grow mycelium for one, so you can grow it in a solid substrate or you can grow it in a liquid substrate. Typically when you look at the research, most of it has been done on liquid culture mycelium. So you grow the mycelium in a liquid vat of nutrients.

Skye Chilton (05:50):
It's usually sugars and proteins, and it will grow out. This mycelium cake, if you think of like maybe tofu or something like that, and then at the end of the process you can drain off all the water and then you have this pure cake of mycelium, which you then you can dry and you can powder. And so this is primarily how they grow mycelium in Asia. And as most of the research on medicinal mushrooms comes out of Asia, most of the research on mycelium is based off this liquid culture of mycelium. But what's commonly grown here in the North American market is using a solid substrate. So a solid substrate, if you'd know of the food product tempeh, tempeh is a soy product where they take cooked soybeans and they inject a fungus onto it and they grow out this sort of white grain cake.

Skye Chilton (06:45):
And they saw that as food product. And this is a similar process where we're taking something like, say, reishi, mycelium, we're injecting that into sterilized grain. This could be rice or oats. And then that's growing out into this sort of grain log here that then gets dried and powdered and sold as a, mushroom supplement. And you also, you have that entire grain substrate that still ends up being part of the final product. And this conflicts with the existing literature because the majority of it's based on that liquid substrate mycelium that I just talked about. And so that's, these two are very different. And so it's when you look out, into the marketplace, when people are talking about mycelium, they're usually pointing to research that's based off liquid fermentation mycelium , but then they're pointing to a product that's made from solid state mycelium. So there's this kind of contrast there. But when you look into the body of research, a lot of it is based around the mushrooms. So the fruit body, which has been extracted in some sort of way, most likely hot water and or alcohol. And this, like if you, I was going for a long time. So when we look at the overarching literature and research on mushrooms and mycelium, we see typically hot water extractions based off the mushroom. And the mycelium is usually based off a liquid fermentation mycelium.

Don Ollsin (08:25):
So yeah, so bits of research that I've seen is that basically when you test these products that are mycelium, they're mostly starch because they're growing on the grain. And so there is not much of the active constituents there.

Skye Chilton (08:39):
Yeah, that's correct. So the grain actually becomes the dominant ingredient in the product, and that translates to a high amount of starch and a small amount of the medicinal compounds. Things like beta glucans or ergosterol, that are much more common in the mushroom itself.

Don Ollsin (09:01):
Thank you.

Skye Chilton (09:02):
Yeah, and this is definitely different. So if you think about, we were just talking about Turkey tail. There's, you know, PSP and PSK which commonly get cited. Both of these are anticancer drugs in Japan and China. And they're actually both made from mycelium. And so it's liquid fermentation mycelium that they're growing in a liquid, but then they're also taking a further step where they're then concentrating and isolating certain compounds to increase the levels.

Skye Chilton (09:38):
And so they're very different than what you would traditionally see in the North American marketplace, or I'm talking about mycelium products. So it's always good to differentiate the two and really separate that out. Similar for Cordyceps as well. If you look at cordyceps CS4, so CS4 is a product out of China when they were trying to learn how to cultivate cordyceps sinensis, they couldn't figure out how to get it to grow a fruiting body. So they ended up with growing the mycelium and liquid, which turned into Cordyceps CS4, and we've seen nutritional analysis as well as analysis on the active compounds that have very drastic differences between the pure mycelium and mycelium that's been cultivated on a grain where the grain becomes the dominant ingredient.

Don Ollsin (10:31):

Skye Chilton (10:35):
So Don, do you want to talk a little about how these fungal organisms exist in nature and, and they're sort of sentient beings out there?

Don Ollsin (10:48):
Yeah, I mean that's one of the reasons I love the Turkey tail and the Reishi is because I can have a relationship with them because I'm here in the Pacific Northwest. They both grow fairly abundantly. And when we do shamanic work with people, we actually have people come and tune into the mushrooms. And that's quite a powerful experience actually. I was quite surprised. We tuned into some Turkey tails in one of our workshops and everybody had a pretty profound experience. So what tuning in means is that you're actually communicating with the sentiment being, and of course they communicate in different ways, but we can receive information from them. And so it's another way of connecting with our medicine that I think is really important

Skye Chilton (11:39):
So how is that done? Are you out in the forest?

Don Ollsin (11:44):
I do recommend it live. Yeah, I do recommend it. It can be done. You know, I like looking at my Reishi that's grown here. But, we generally do it with people in the forest. I'm remembering one, you know, often they grow on dead logs, right? And so this is the large dead log and there's like probably 20 of us all humped over this dead log. Just closing our eyes and, and, and tuning in. And you know, it seems like such a simple process, but sometimes it's just so amazing just the amount of energy that comes out of it. Cause you kind of think of these beings is that they're huge part of our ecosystem. And again, that's the thing. Another thing that people must to realize that where we live on in our, fir forests, all these trees are connected to the mycelium body and they get all, all, they communicate and receive a lot of their nourishment. They're dependent upon the mycelium to live. I mean it's not just a, in a relationship it's like they are what actually transmute the minerals and the other things in the soil to make them bio available to the tree. And here in the forestry department when I used to be in the mycology society, it was great because they had mycologists on full time working in the forest because the mycology is so important to the health of the forest.

Skye Chilton (13:06):
Yeah, that's a really good point. I mean they're out there, you know, everywhere in the forest you can kind of dig down and you'll see all the white little filaments. And you'll see them, you know, the mushroom starting to grow off the trees and the polypores and they're out there as nature's recyclers who are breaking down this organic matter and allowing other plants to utilize this almost like a compost per se to give nutrients to new life.

Don Ollsin (13:36):
Yeah. I mean we got some soil from somewhere and it had a lot of wood in it and all of a sudden we had hundreds of mushrooms and, and that was fine cause I knew they were breaking down that material can make it a bio available. And we mentioned in the panel about working with the garden giants for example, in restoring land that's been, you know, polluted, so it's a different process. But it's still taking some land that's not bioavailable and making it available. And that's kind of what the mushrooms do. So how, you know, like Real Mushrooms, how are your mushrooms growing?

Skye Chilton (14:15):
Yeah, so we grow all the mushrooms, are all certified organic. We try and use more, I'd say traditional methods with state of the art processing. So we are in China on certified organic farms and they're typically, mushrooms are grown on sawdust logs, sawdust is a really good nutrient for mushrooms to grow on. And, usually they're grown in shade houses, so it can be like basically made out of bamboo for the most part, a really simple, it's always grown with the seasons. So certain mushrooms start earlier, so like Reishi gets planted in April. Whereas Shiitake and Maitake grow in and around September. So Reishi takes a long time to grow, but Shiitake and Maitake go out in September and then by November you're harvesting and it's dependent on ambient temperatures. You know, what's the moisture, what's the heat level?

Skye Chilton (15:17):
They get Reishi growing early. So it can grow through the summer 'cause it really likes the heat. And then into like the wintertime is when they'll start to plant Tremella. Though the cordyceps likes colder weather as well as well as the Lion's Mane.S o we'll have these, you know, organic farms that are very, very simple. And so it's almost like traditional growing methods. And then they get taken to state of the art extraction facilities and you're thinking massive stainless steel tanks, if you've ever been to say like a, brewery or something like that. It's very similar. There's lots of pipes going everywhere. There's huge stainless steel that's where we're cooking these mushrooms and concentrating them. And then they're basically going into clean rooms through a spray dryer where we evaporate off the moisture and a very controlled environment, under very specific, good manufacturing conditions.

Don Ollsin (16:16):
Sweet. And then you mentioned before with the extraction, I know that you, with the Reishi, you do an alcohol and water because of triterpenes.

Skye Chilton (16:24):
Yeah. So we've, we've got a few different types of products that we use. So, depending like chaga and reishi, we typically do dual extract due to the triterpenes. We also have other proprietary one-to-one extractions where we are leaving all the fiber with the product. So instead of taking that out in order to concentrate it, you can leave that with the extraction. And so you're getting that hot water extraction where it's breaking down the cell wall, but you're still keeping all the insolubles there. So you still get the full benefit of all the insoluble compounds, just by doing a hot water extraction. So that's a little sort of specialty that Nammex and Real Mushrooms has to offer.

Don Ollsin (17:08):
Which mushroom would you do that with?

Skye Chilton (17:11):
We can do that with all of them, but it really depends on the type of product that you're putting together. There's, you know, different solubility levels due to the fiber that's in there. So if you're just taking a powder that can work, if you're working with say beverages or something like that, where you need it to be really soluble, you'd want to work with like a more concentrated extract that doesn't have that fiber component.

Don Ollsin (17:37):
And, I mean, I've seen that with Nammex. I've seen that with Jeff's products of the ratio of like one to 20 or something and one to less because so is that kind of those two different products? Is that...

Skye Chilton (17:51):
Yeah, so we're still, we're like looking at doing some different projects around how the compounds concentrate through extraction ratios because it's not necessarily, it's not a uniform procedure, a uniform concentration. So a lot of times you think of say like a 10 to one extract. Okay. It's 10 times more concentrated, but we're not seeing 10 times more compounds from the source material to the final extract. So that's, people have to remember that the extract ratio is just based on raw materials and doesn't necessarily translate over to the active constituents. So we're looking at doing some tests around that to see if there's like a sweet spot.

Don Ollsin (18:38):
Right. That's cool. That's, that's, yeah, I like that. That's, that's, yeah. That's great because getting, getting real specific, you know, I love it. I mean like herbalism is medicine. This is alchemy. Right? And just because, I mean some alchemists would love the kind of labs and equipment we have nowadays to do these kind of, you know, fine tuning to get, get really in there. So great.

Skye Chilton (19:06):
Yeah. Don, do you want to touch on mushrooms and Ayurveda and trying to go around dosages and I just went through the, your little quiz about the different types in Ayurveda the Vata and the, was that Pitta?

Don Ollsin (19:21):
Yeah, Vata, Pitta in Kapha. So the Vata is the year sign, the Pitta is the fire constitution, and Kapha is the water compensation. So the three active elements are air, fire and water. There's also ether and earth, but they're more containers than active elements. I think this is really important for longterm health. And, and you know, a lot of people take products like mushrooms, especially products like Reishi for longevity. I mean you literally call your (product) Longevity. And so what we're trying to do is use these to enhance the things that they enhance, which is the immune system and the nervous system and the heart. You know, there's so many things that they do. But another level of that is that when we put in the refinement of Ayurveda, we want to make sure that we're not at the same time inbalancing the dosha. You know what I mean?

Don Ollsin (20:12):
And the dosha is really controlled a lot by taste. So the extract, Reishi extract, is very bitter. So that is particularly good for a Pitta constitution. It's fact is the number one taste to reduce fire, which is very interesting as fire also relates to inflammation. So Reishi is a very powerful antiinflammatory, but Vata, that's kind of the taste. Bitter is made up of air and ether, which is what Vata is made up of: air and ether. So It's a very, it can aggravate Vata. So it doesn't mean Vata can't use it. And also it's cooling. Extraordinary cooling. Bitter is, the most cooling flavor you can get in Ayurveda so they're already cold. So you don't want to make them colder. It's really simple. You just add ginger powder. For example, you just add a warming herb. It doesn't mean you don't use it, but you add a warming herb and then you might want to add something sweetening.

Don Ollsin (21:14):
So you might, you know, you literally might want to eat it with some rice. I mean, I know it would be not great tasting, but that's the whole idea in Ayurveda. Sweetness isn't just necessarily sugar, but you could use a sweet herb like licorice or you know, some kind of sweetener because that bitter could be too cooling for them. But the other thing is that, and with the Kapha, they are not as cold as the Vata, but they're, they're heavy. There's an earth and water. So the bitter is okay for them. But a little bit of pungency and again, it would be good to warm them up, but no sweet because sweet is earth and water, so that, that's too heavy for them. Yeah, because it's not that complicated. It sounds complicated, but it's not. Bitter is the main flavor.

Don Ollsin (22:05):
And over here you add, you know, a bit of sweetness and over and over here just add some pungency. You know? And so that's still talking about balance, right? Balance. And again, this isn't important for a week. No, this isn't important for even maybe three weeks, but a year, two years, three years. Yeah. This is important. These are, this is what you're doing to bring you into balance every day if you're using this. And then the other factor that's really important is that we, the three doshas process very differently. They have very different metabolisms. So the Vata are like a hummingbird, very fast metabolism, every couple hours they need some nourishment because they're like [makes sound like fast hummingbird wings]. But that is like your standard medical model three times a day, you know, like every four hours, you know, and it's kind of a joke with Pittas, like, you know, they're like a clock.

Don Ollsin (22:58):
They're hungry at eight o'clock, at 8:00 AM they're hungry at noon and they're hungry at six and you really want to feed them because it's fire. And if they don't, they get, they get cranky, hangry, hungry, angry. And neither do you fight with your partner just before a meal. Because, especially if people have Pitta and you feed each other and then see if you're still angry at each other. And then the Kapha, cause it's earth and water, has slower metabolism, they really only need it once or twice a day because they're going to, it's going to be in their system for much longer and then you need a bit stronger dosage. The Vatas needs a smaller dosage and the Pitta needs the regular dosage.

Skye Chilton (23:37):
Yeah. Cause I definitely was trending on the Pitta for both the physical and the mental. Yeah.

Skye Chilton (23:45):
Yeah. It's interesting cause I wouldn't really call myself sort of like a fire person per se. I was like yeah, fiery. And I was talking with my friend the other day, we were talking more of like, this is more like the TCM side of the wood and the metal, and we were talking about being more like wood oriented where we're kind of growing and adapting. And, but yeah, so it kind of took me aback a little bit when I was like, Oh, I'm fire on this. And I'm sure it means different things and must change over time too.

Don Ollsin (24:22):
Yeah. And it changes during the seasons. That's not the reason it's really important, you know, in the summertime. And it's also, there's a scale, you know, like, I had a Pitta who came to me for a consultation on the way to the consultation you got into a fight, you know, like, I mean there's like really, really Pitta people and you can look at them. They're, wandering around in the wintertime with a tee shirt on. I mean anytime we see a group of you walking down the road or somewhere, we just look at them and there's one person with no clothes on. Just guess what dosha he is. And the other people got big coats and stuff on. We have a mechanic here on Pender Island. He never wears a shirt. We mostly wear as a tank top year-round, you know, working on cars and stuff, you know, and he says, cause he's a complete total Pitta. I'm kinda up in the middle.

Don Ollsin (25:07):
I'm not extreme Pitta, but I'm not also, but I am fiery and I get hot, and so I need to be able to cool down and that's the biggest important thing for that. But going back to the mushrooms, it's just a bit of a refinement thing, but I think people may get more results from their practice of using the herbs if they did that a bit. Another thing is that what this is saying is that the activeness of the herb is lasting that long. So if you're trying to bring about some kind of change with the mushroom, then with the Vata a little bit, every couple hours is going to keep that thing. And so it may not be important, you know, after they bring the system back into balance, then they could, you know, instead of doing it five times a day or something, they could do it three times a day. Same as the Pitta, they would want to do it three times a day during the period of, but then they might only do it once or twice a day.

Don Ollsin (26:03):
And with the Kapha, they may do it twice a day when they're starting out to try and get something to happen. But then they may go down to just once a day.

Skye Chilton (26:10):
Right. I believe Justin touched on that in our previous call when you were saying, depending on the temperament, you know, be having three times a day versus like once versus twice. , we can make a link to my, a book. Yeah, we should solution

Don Ollsin (26:27):
thing so that it will look at their constitution and it's really a, it's another fun way to, to know a bit about yourself. And like you said, you know, you can learn things from TCM about yourself. You learn things about IUD to people. Let me do n erology, just strategy. But we get, we're kind of getting to know ourselves a little more. And the reason for that is that makes us hopefully a bit more adaptable to our environment, both inner and outer. And that's what I found IUD to be extremely helpful. So Don, how do you normally use mushrooms? What's your preferred way? My preferred way or two ways. , first is eating them and digestability yours are very digestible, so it's not as important as say, other herb. You've already years of hard pre digest, you know what I mean? The extraction process is such that they're why nother, they've been already broken down as opposed to say, taking an herb like stinging nettle, which I do.

Don Ollsin (27:27):
And drying it and powering it, basically just got leaf there. You know what I mean? And it's, it's somewhat digestible, but it's not as, I just want yours. That's already been alchemically processed to a place. But even with yours, I like to take it in some Kiefer and some, I sometimes put a bit of yogurt with the key bridge to make it make a bit more flavorful and put more of the different, you know, spectr of bacteria in there. Because Kiva is a transient bacteria. All it needs always needs to be put in. It doesn't take a presidency. There's lots of the yogurts are resident bacteria. They, they, they inhabit the colon and stay there. So you're kind of always wanting to put these in there. But they've done a lot of studies with like ginseng for example, Siberian ginseng and there's products called genics genocides in there that they found that people didn't have the healthy bacteria and they got, they didn't absorb it. So that's kind of my favorite way that secondly, I love tinctures and you know, your product is kind of a cheat because you don't really need to teach you, you just need to mix. It was an alcohol.

Don Ollsin (28:39):
Normally how you can tincture is so good and alcohol [inaudible] repaired your time and your doing the, you know, the co, you know, the, you're getting the stuff out of the leaf and then you press it. Well, you've already done that through your extraction processes either through water and alcohol. So you don't have to do that. But sometimes it's, it's convenient to, to have the tincture. Mmm. Especially when you're making it with other blends and stuff. So sometimes I'll make a teacher even out of your product and then I just have it therefore. But generally I don't because I don't recommend you using alcohol if they don't have to. Yeah. It's used as a preservative. Right. And it's like, well, it's going to pull out the insoluble triterpenes are not going to come out and water. They're just not, yeah. There's going to be a small amount, but yeah, primarily they're all primarily, they're going to be, yeah, they're insoluble.

Don Ollsin (29:32):
So, yeah. And then it does, you know, it's acting as a, when you do your finishing part of that, it's going to act to keep it shelf stable too. Yeah. So how do you take mushrooms? Usually taking him on my coffee. So yeah, I usually, , whatever I have on hand. I think this morning was Turkey tail in lines vein. And then I, I'm a big fan of the butter coffee, so coffee, butter, a little bit of coconut oil and mushrooms and blend it up. And that kind of [inaudible] gets me to probably 10 or 11 o'clock. So don't really eat anything in the morning and then have a decent sized breakfast and a lunch fairly quick after that. So yeah, it's almost like a mini fat, not a true fast. But when he's from [inaudible], a lot of my other hoops I use in coffee, I'd be just, you know, it's like [inaudible] one, right?

Don Ollsin (30:32):
It's a ritual that you do. And so the Hawthorne for the heart marshmallow, which is nice sort of soothing thing for the gastrointestinal tract and the kidneys, especially, there are few, not really harsh chemicals and coffee, but they're a little bit irritating, you know, especially in the, so you're sort of in marshmallow in there. And then whatever's the flavor of the day. What other herbs? I'm being using, I can just put them in my coffee. Like the ratio pair as well. It's got that bitterness to it is pretty good too. It's got those earthy almost chocolaty tones. , so yeah, definitely, yeah, when you have whatever your daily ritual is, whether if it's coffee or if it's tea or even like a smoothie or something like that, , just makes it an easy way to add it to an existing routine. So that it becomes routine.

Don Ollsin (31:25):
So pairing, you know, like I talked about it in the panel, but I'll mention it again, specially the of go to my students and members of my community is that these mushrooms have often a lot of, , you know, like Reishi for example, like I've got a mind map here that my love of mind mapping, but it gives you an example and that's just just on the Reishi, you know, so [inaudible] first it's [inaudible]. Well, Kia and I say that we mean the beautiful thing about femininity rush, like Reishi is that it, it Hanses our key key energy. I don't know if that's how you say it, but it's, it's, I'm Herb's. They found them. They call them. Yeah. Amen. Are you gait afforded them that they have a quality that transcends sort of the medicinal aspect. And so Reishi has got that and it, and it's [inaudible] to realize it was only the world here that had Reishi before we learned how to cultivate it and people would actually come over to our force and BC to harvest Reishi because there was lots of it growing here.

Don Ollsin (32:33):
Oh wow. So, so basically, so sorry. She has an immune system. It does the heart, it works with pain. It's a person who acts system. It works with allergies. It worse with anti aging. It works with the liver. And so, you know, it's got this nice spectr . So on a, I don't know, as a tonic to be using for longevity, it's fantastic. But then say you want to use your Reishi, but you've got, it works a little long. It's too, excuse me. I shift first of the lungs. So if you want, you really work with the lungs, so you can continue to take your Reishi, but then you take a really specific herb, like Ella campaign, which is the [inaudible], the kind of the primary herbs, fish. You've got congestion, and then you take your ELA campaign at the same time you're taking the Reishi. Now this is going to pull the energy of the Reishi into the lung area.

Don Ollsin (33:26):
So that's a pairing it with the herb that you want the Oregon, you got the liver, you know, you suddenly like milk, this'll then melt. This'll go, you know, it's like it goes to the receptor sites of the liver. Very interesting as a relationship to mushrooms because it's the only thing that we have to counter Amany a poisoning. Really? Oh yeah. Like it's the only thing that works. It goes in and occupies receptor sites. It kind of blocks or blocks them. Yeah. Otherwise there's nothing else that'll stop the poisoning of the Debbie Amanita. So we're doing on the positive side of, of, of opening up the liver, you know? Interesting. As I say that, I think maybe, maybe it might block it might want to use Daniel. I intend, I don't think it would. But you know it's like is that kind of interesting thing but something that targets liver also you can use, and I recommend this a lot, it's kind of missing now in, in herbal medicine is it's use a hot water bottle or use a ginger compress, you know, bring the blood to the area or even use your mind, you know, like take the herb and like, especially if you're really healing you, somebody has lung cancer.

Don Ollsin (34:35):
Like, I mean people use these mushrooms for intense conditions. I don't just use them, you know, but if you've got somebody really seriously, then you know, take your medicine and go lie down and put a hot water bottle on your area and then close your eyes and just breathe into that area. And just, you know, there's a book called sell talk by dr Leger and he's proven that we can talk to ourselves and now listen, no Bruce lift in the same thing is that we have receptor sites and they respond to chemicals. And you think a thought you create a chemical as just the way the nature of the body. I can create chemicals. If I get happy, I'll create chemicals completely. Yeah. Yeah. The mind is extremely powerful. Yeah. I want to touch base on that of different herbs that you might pair with mushrooms.

Don Ollsin (35:24):
That was a good little segue there. Is there any others that you would recommend? One of the key ones that we use a lot in most herbalists do is ginger because ginger ginger opens up all the meridians. Ginger in an I, you needed to call a Sophic herb, so it's, it's it's, even though it's heating, it's not harmful to the Pitta dosha and everything is is is based on quantity. So when I mentioned the ginger, you do more for the Vata and Kafka and less for the Pitta. But ginger is also what we call a carrier herb. So it opens up, basil dilates, it, opened it up, all the Hilary beds so that the herb goes all the way to the farthest reaches, which is really important for all your chronic diseases like arthritis and stuff where the, what's happening is that the tissues are breaking down right at the end of the vacu vascular pathways and they're not getting the nutrients in there or knocking the wastes there. So when we take something like ginger and then open it up to spread through, then that's so Ginger's wanted the key Herb's that I recommend people use with their, with their Reishi. , yeah. I love ginger. I mean, you know, all your aromatics, all your aromatics are going to be good. So if you've got the inquiry, aromatics panel, cinnamon cardiman, you drink coffee. Carter means a great neutralizer of caffeine, excessive caffeine.

Skye Chilton (36:58):
That's really good. Yeah, I love, , when we're traveling through China all one we get to eat tons of mushrooms, which is, it's like every meal, there's tons of mushroom dishes, but they usually always have tons of garlic and tons of ginger garlic. Again, be another one. Yeah. Yeah. And it's just fantastic. It's like, yeah, you just get this huge burst of well garlic breath and then like tons of ginger. But yeah. And green tea as well. I'll just quickly

Don Ollsin (37:26):
go over and get my a mushroom just to make a plug for that. Sure.

Don Ollsin (37:49):
Can you hear me without the microphone? Yep. Okay, good. So yeah, so I mean I showed this last time and this is kind of for case people don't watch the other one. So what , yeah, this guy was talking about was this is the mycelium here. This was grown, probably might've been a grain, I'm not sure. But now it's shrunk down and stuff. So you can buy these, this isn't there, they're just called there. They often, I've logged into my college society and often have them there at the annual affair, but some markets sell them and stuff. So let's just call it a mushroom log. That's not really a log. It's been handmade. None of this is here. It's just like you feel like that kind of thing in a bag home and grow it. And then you get, this is, this is Reishi. And , and it's interesting like Skye said, which I think is really cool, is that Reishi loves heat. It's not, it's not a cold mushroom. We think of mushrooms, a Colbert Reishi actually likes heat so you can go this s mer time. But yeah, that's so much fun. Cause so you can, and again, it's just, you know, these, I always say this funny thing, you know, like you ever get somebody go to their medicine cabinet and open it up their medicine cabinet and pull out their aspirin and sprinkle them on their hand.

Don Ollsin (39:11):
I thought it was ever beautiful white pills. Oh man. Fantastic. You know, every time I look at this, every time I look at it, it's like, it's just exquisite. And then I have a whole other one that I won't bother getting now, but each one's going to be uniquely different. And so that's the, you know, I know when you grow them commercially, they're gonna be a little bit more of the same. But growing them yourself, it's just another level of, , having, you know, indoor plants, you can have indoor mushrooms. Yeah, that's great. I find there are definitely, there's more people providing the grow kits now they're becoming a lot more popular. And I think it's important for people just to try it out and understand how the like organism actually works. And I know they can see the different parts because that's kind of the big part is really showing people exactly what we're talking about.

Don Ollsin (40:08):
Yeah. Nobody even mentioned pruning body. Well that's what you'll be by a mycelium block and it'll go and then you'll have, well you mentioned out of the bottom. And I mean, she produces an amazing amount of it. You'll have spores so on. That's when you go to a mushroom club and you learn spore prints. You can put these on a piece of paper and they'll give you a pattern. And that pattern is used by my colleges to identify it. So it's a fascinating study. And I know you grew up with them and we're very fortunate to live in the Pacific Northwest. And, , you mentioned Shan trails or your, you know, favorite forest mushroom, which, yeah, who doesn't love Shan trails? They're hard to go wrong other than maybe thanks guy. Yeah, so it's been fun, man. You know, like my students, I really, you know, we recommend real mushrooms because we want people to get the right product for what they're doing, you know, and you know, until the, till the other proof is there. That's my choice, is to stick with the products that I trust in terms of the way they're processed, the way they're growing, the way they're chested and stuff like that. And so, , yeah. Thank you, Don. Yeah, this has been really fun.

Skye Chilton (41:34):
And if anyone else has questions, like, just feel free to ask one of us and, we can do a followup call or answer them in the comments and things like that. Yeah. Awesome. Awesome. Thanks. Bye.

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