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Shiitake mushrooms (Lentinula edodes) are good for you – and shiitake byproducts can be good for other crops. These mushrooms contain high-molecular-weight polysaccharides (HMWP), which may improve human immune function; and the compound eritadenine, which may help lower cholesterol levels.

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Mushrooms contain several key nutrients, including copper, potassium, folate and niacin, according to recently analyzed data.

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Brenda Lynn Gould, an herbalist specializing in medicinal mushrooms, tries to empower interested people to learn and use what’s in their own back yards to create and maintain good health. Just as she learned from her parents, grandparents and other elders, as well as from the plants themselves, she’d like to help people reconnect with the knowledge about folk healing traditions that many elders still remember.

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