Maitake comes from the combination of two Japanese words - Mai (meaning dance) and Take (meaning mushroom). This may be a description of the fruiting bodies and how they overlap and appear to be in rhythm with one another. It’s also referred to as “Hen of the woods”, perhaps both for its appearance and its poultry-like characteristics when eaten. There is rich lore depicting times in Feudal Japan where Maitake was worth its weight in silver. Knowledge of the distinct geographic locations where Maitake grew was treated as a fiercely guarded secret, often passed down through generations.
Adaptogenic Paragon of Immune-Emboldening
*Maitake is packed with polysaccharides like beta-glucans. Often referred to simply as adaptogens, biological response modifiers are plant compounds which work in tandem with the body’s natural cellular defense systems. This can help do everything from boosting the immune system and optimizing physical performance to fighting cancer.
*Similar to Lion's Mane, Maitake may also have neuroprotective and brain-enhancing benefits.