What are Poria cocos and why are they important?
Poria what? So first things first; Poria Cocos is not actually a mushroom, but rather a sclerotium. A sclerotium is essentially a hardened fungal mass that holds food reserves. One specific role of sclerotiums is to survive in extreme environments. Another notable sclerotium is Chaga. It is a wood-decay fungus that grows subterranean. Poria cocos is an underground sclerotium that resembles a small coconut.
Poria Cocos is also Known as Fu Ling, and it has a long history of use in Traditional Chinese Herbalism (TCM). It grows like a tuber under the ground and resembles a brown potato or coconut. If you look at a photo, Poria cocos may look like chopped tofu which is unlike any traditional cap and stem variety you’re probably used to seeing.
What compounds are in Poria Cocos?
Like the other functional mushrooms that we use here at Mushroom Revival, Poria Cocos contains beneficial triterpenes and polysaccharides. We include Poria Cocos in our Daily 10 formula because all of the ten functional mushrooms in the formula have beneficial triterpenes and polysaccharides. The most famous compound in Wolfiporia extensa (Poria Cocos) is Pachymic acid which is used to support the immune system. The Poria Cocos sclerotia used in our Daily 10 also has 91 triterpene acids (compounds that support the immune system) as opposed to only 19 in the mycelium (“the underground roots of the mushroom”). The triterpene acids they both share are also up to 6 times higher in the sclerotia compared to the mycelium.
What are the benefits of taking Poria Cocos?
Poria cocos helps support a healthy mood*
Poria cocos may support normal response to occasional environmental stressors that can trigger restlessness and tension. Studies show that Poria Cocos may promote a better sense of wellbeing.*
Poria cocos supports a healthy urinary tract.*
In traditional Chinese herbalism, this mushroom is used to drain dampness. In studies it has shown that the outer layer of poria cocos contains compounds that support urinary tract health.*
Poria cocos provides adaptogenic support.*
As a functional mushroom, Poria cocos has adaptogenic properties that help support the body’s response to occasional stress and fatigue.* Adaptogens are an incredibly important group of plants, herbs, and fungi that help the body and our minds remain in an even-keel and optimal state despite occasional external stressors over which we have no control.*
Poria cocos may help support the immune system.*
Poria cocos contain 91 triterpenes in their fruiting bodies. These triterpenes are so important when it comes to helping support the immune system.*
Ways to enjoy Poria Cocos / How to use Poria Cocos
Poria cocos Tinctures:
We include Poria cocos as one of the ten functional mushrooms in our Daily 10 tincture. Tinctures are becoming more popular these days, but if you are not familiar with what that means we are here to help! A tincture is a supplement format that is a concentrated liquid. The mushroom goes through an extraction process to produce the liquid. We always recommend a dual-extraction method which means that the Poria Cocos goes through two extractions; one extraction with alcohol and one with water. The reason for this is to pull out both the beneficial compounds that are alcohol-soluble and those that are water-soluble to end up having a more potent product.
If you’re looking for the quickest way to get the support of functional mushrooms in your system then a tincture is for you! Tinctures are the most bioavailable method of supplementing functional mushrooms. This just means that tinctures get all of the mushroom power into your bloodstream at a faster rate than any other type of functional mushroom supplement.
How do you use a tincture? Great question! The choice is really yours, but the two most common ways are sublingually and mixed into beverages. If you choose to take your Poria Cocos tincture sublingually you will simply squeeze two droppers under your tongue and swirl it around in your mouth for at least 20 seconds so it can absorb into your mouth's cellular walls. If you would prefer it in beverages then you will simply squeeze two droppers directly into your beverage of choice and stir, blend, or mix until thoroughly combined.
Poria Cocos Capsules and Powders:
If you would prefer a supplement that’s a little more straightforward then Poria Cocos capsules may be you. Capsules are familiar to a lot of people and are super easy to integrate into your lifestyle if you already have other supplements that you take. We suggest always being mindful of the type of capsule supplement that you are taking because a lot of capsules contain added ingredients that aren’t beneficial for your body.
If you’re looking for a more adventurous route for your Poria Cocos supplementation then powders might be just what you need. Poria Cocos powders can be added to drinks such as smoothies, coffee, and teas. The functional mushroom powder can also be added to a variety of recipes such as soups and stews and even desserts! We love powders because we can add them into our cooking routine for additional adaptogenic support. They are quite versatile and easy to use. Simply scoop out the Poria Cocos powder and add it to your beverage (or recipe of choice) and mix thoroughly.
When to take Poria cocos
When is the best time to take Poria Cocos?
The choice is all yours when it comes to the best time of day to take your Poria cocos supplements. Because it is an adaptogen, Poria cocos help support your body in maintaining homeostasis all day long. So whether you prefer to take your supplements all at once in the morning or spread them out over the course of the day then you will be supported!
The most important factor when it comes to taking Poria Cocos is making sure that you are consuming the supplement consistently. By using functional mushroom supplements on a consistent and regular basis you will reap all of the benefits. This is why it is really important to take a look at your day-to-day routine and see what things that you do consistently and add your supplements as a part of your routines. Some examples of these consistent activities might be hitting the gym or workout class at the same time everyday, a morning skincare routine, having a green smoothie or coffee every morning, etc. When you have an idea of your routine it will make it easier to choose specific types of supplements that will be easy to integrate into your current routine.
What to look for in Poria cocos supplements
We are currently in a ‘shroom boom’ where more and more functional mushroom products are hitting the market and becoming available. We are focused on providing the highest quality products at Mushroom Revival, so we are here to break down what you need to know when shopping for Poria coco supplements.
Let's talk about lab testing for a second. It’s extremely important to make sure the Poria Cocos products you choose have gone through lab testing. The first reason is because if the company has their products lab tested then they care about quality, and that’s what you want! Lab testing is also important because it eliminates any concern that you are consuming contaminants or heavy metals. The last reason that lab testing is critical is to know what the beneficial compounds are in your mushroom products and how potent they actually are. Not all mushroom products are created equal and therefore there is a lot of variance in quality and potency. Based on blind third party tests we’ve done with the top mushroom supplements on the market, the beneficial compounds in some products were almost non-existent.
We previously touched on the importance of a dual-extracted tincture; there are many compounds that are alcohol-soluble and then plenty of others that are water-soluble. If you aren’t taking a dual-extracted tincture then you aren’t receiving the full spectrum of benefits that the functional mushrooms can offer you!*
It is also important to make sure that your supplement with Poria cocos is 100% USDA certified organic. By ensuring that your supplements are 100% USDA certified organic you know your product is being produced with the highest quality fungi!
We also recommend that you only purchase a supplement that is made with Poria cocos fruiting bodies. Fruiting bodies are the actual above ground part of the fungi. There is something else called mycelium which is the underground root network. While mycelium is important to the growth of the fungi it is not important when it comes to supporting your wellness. If the supplement contains ‘mycelia’ or ‘mycelial mass’ that also falls into the category of mycelium.
When you purchase a supplement from Mushroom Revival you are also helping support our precious planet. We plant a tree for every product sold in partnership with One Tree Planted. To date we have planted over 46,000 trees all across the world. We are committed to doing our part to give back to Mother Earth because trees and fungi have a very symbiotic relationship. To learn more about our commitment to preserving the planet check out our mission page.
Potential Side Effects of Poria Cocos
We have not heard of any known side effects when it comes to Poria cocos. Because we are mushroom people and not doctors we always recommend talking to your primary care physician or a medical professional before starting any kind of functional mushroom routine.
Click here to learn more about Poria cocos!***