BCCT plans to write a summary on chaga mushroom, one of several medicinal mushrooms. While our summary is in development, you can visit About Herbs: Chaga Mushroom
Before using this therapy, consult your oncology team about interactions with other treatments and therapies. Also make sure this therapy is safe for use with any other medical conditions you may have.
Ralph Moss, PhD in his Moss Reports includes information on where to obtain quality formulations of chaga mushrooms: Moss Reports (purchase required): Select from the list of cancers down the left side of the page for a report describing uses of conventional, complementary, alternative and integrative therapies related to that cancer. Ralph Moss is among the most knowledgeable and balanced researchers of integrative cancer therapies. The cost of his Moss Reports is not negligible, but many patients find them of considerable value. Moss is also available for consultations.
BCCT does not recommend therapies or doses, but only provides information for patients and providers to consider as part of a complete treatment plan. Patients should discuss therapies with their physicians, as contraindications, interactions and side effects must be evaluated.
Dosage recommendations are available from these sources:
- Alschuler LN, Gazella KA. The Definitive Guide to Cancer, 3rd Edition: An Integrative Approach to Prevention, Treatment, and Healing. Berkeley, California: Celestial Arts. 2010.
- Stamets P. MycoMedicinals An Informational Treatise on Mushrooms, 3rd Edition. China: MycoMedia Productions. 2002.
- Natural Medicines Database (requires purchase)
Integrative Programs, Protocols and Medical Systems
|For more information about programs and protocols, see our Integrative Programs and Protocols page.|
- Programs and protocols
- Traditional systems
Paul Stamets advises using mushroom products that contain both the water and alcohol extractions, since each contain different medicinally important compounds.3
Integrative oncologist and BCCT advisor Keith Block, MD, advises using extracts (rather than eating whole mushrooms) that are blends of several different medicinal mushrooms, including maitake (Grifola frondosa), agaricus (Agaricus blazeii), shiitake (Lentinula or Lentinus edodes), reishi (Ganoderma lucidum), turkey tail (Trametes or Coriolus versicolor), and caterpillar fungus or cordyceps (Cordyceps sinensis).4
Naturopathic oncologist and BCCT advisor Lise Alschuler, ND, FABNO, August 9, 2018: There are instances when I use specific mushrooms, for instance:
- Coriolus (aka Trametes) versicolor (turkey tail) for breast cancer
- Agaricus blazeii for ovarian cancer
- Chaga mushroom for melanoma
However, it is a very valuable and reasonable strategy to use a blend that includes mushrooms, each of which is standardized to its polysaccharides and beta-glucans. The key is to use a hot water extract of the fruiting bodies or a full-spectrum extract (includes mycelium) that clearly identifies on its label the quantity of mushroom extract.
- Oriveda: Oriveda Medicinal Mushroom Resource Page
- Keith I. Block, MD: Life over Cancer: The Block Center Program for Integrative Cancer Treatment
- Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center: About Herbs, Botanicals and Other Products
- Therapeutic Research Center: Natural Medicines Database