Medicinal Mushrooms and their Health Benefits with Jeff Chilton | Podcast #261

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Welcome to the Beyond Wellness Radio Podcast! For today, an interesting topic is all about medicinal mushrooms. We have Jeff Chilton, who is a mushroom expert and CEO of realmushrooms.com. Know the in’s and out’s of mushrooms, how this can improve your health. Check out the podcast below.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani

Dr. Justin Marchegiani

In this episode, we cover:

01:42 Growing mushrooms

09:25 Ergothioneine compound and its benefits

23:56 Lion’s Mane

34:00 Chinese Medicine

47:14 Psychedelic Mushrooms

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Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Dr. Justin Marchegiani here. Welcome to Beyond Wellness Radio. We got a fabulous guest guest here Jeff Chilton, who is a mushroom expert. Today’s talks all going to be about medicinal mushrooms, the ins the outs how they can improve your health. Jeff, welcome to the show how we doing?

Jeff Chilton: Hey, Justin, thank you so much for having me doing fine.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Excellent. Well, let’s dive in and tell the listeners about kind of your background. How did you even get into the mushroom industry? You’ve been doing it for a while. And what brought you here today?

Jeff Chilton: Well, you know what, I’m a born and raised in the Pacific Northwest, forests, rivers, lots of water, and in the fall, it rains a lot. And so it’s one of the best places in the world for wild mushrooms. And so, when I went to university, I had an interest in mushroom. So I studied mycology, but my major was anthropology and through anthropology I studied all about the use of mushrooms as food as medicine and in shamanism, but when universe It was over. It’s like, how do you get a job in anthropology? Right money now? So So I thought, well, you know, I’d love to learn how to grow mushrooms. And it turns out that there was only one mushroom farm in Washington State and it was 60 miles down the road from Seattle. I went down, I, I ended up getting a job. And I was there for the next 10 years, literally living with mushrooms. 

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Wow, amazing. Yeah. So when you started out this process, did you kind of have to learn the ins and outs of like, how to farm them, how to raise them, how to grow them? Like how did that process kind of unfold? Did you have to study from some really, you know, key mentors in this industry? Or did they just kind of didn’t actually happen organically on your own?

Jeff Chilton: Well, you know, this was a very large farm and we were growing 2 million pounds of mushrooms every year. I mean, there was there was 200 employees. And so I just started out at the bottom of this and there were a couple of mushroom growers there who are the head grower. So this operation and managers and I essentially was kind of like an apprentice to them. So over the next 10 years, I made my way up to being the production manager. And again, I mean, just think about this every day, every single crop and we’ve got like these crops and rotations, I’m seeing Justin I’m seeing 200 crops of mushrooms. Every year, every year 200 crops, think about a normal farmer and how many crops that normal farmer is going to see.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: That’s amazing. So you started out what were your favorite mushrooms to grow off the bat? So obviously, you may have some personal preference based off of what you take or what works the best on your physiology, what allows you to feel the best, what are your favorite ones off the bat for you?

Jeff Chilton: Well, first of all, you know, again, we’re growing Agaricus motions and that’s all we really had to eat at the time other than wild mushrooms. But while I was there, we had a Japanese scientist who was growing oyster mushrooms, enoki mushrooms and shiitake mushrooms and man hat Have you ever eaten shiitake mushrooms? 

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: I have Yes. 

Jeff Chilton: They’re delicious. They’re absolutely my favorite moment. Not only are they excellent in terms of just eating and nutritionally but medicinally they’re really solid so like shiitake mushrooms are one of those food as medicine. I’m foods.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Oh yeah really big immune booster. So what are your favorite one? So in practice I clinically use Reishi maitake, shiitake, cordyceps. You have Lion’s Mane, turkey tail. Those are some some of the more common medicinal mushrooms. Do you have any specific favorites that you’ve used clinically or that you’ve seen in general?

Jeff Chilton: Well, you know, my favorite is actually reishi mushroom because reishi mushroom, you know, with medicinal mushrooms, the key compound a medicinal mushroom is called a Beta Glucan. Yeah, and this beta glucan is what activates our immune system. So it’s a potential creator, something that strengthens our immunity all mushrooms have these beta glucans even just edible mushrooms that we think of as medicinal mushrooms day. Yeah, because the Beta Glucan makes up half of the cell wall of mushrooms. And so, so all mushrooms will have that. But medicinal mushrooms, the top medicinal mushrooms have a very specific architecture of that Beta Glucan that makes them active compared to the others. Reishi has probably the largest amount of beta glucans that went to Turkey tail in all of our analyses. And we analyze every single batch of product that we make ratios got one of the highest levels of beta glucans, but it also has these compounds called try terpenoids. And those are the bitter compounds. So so it’s kind of like Reishi is medicinal mushroom plus, and that’s the one if you’re in Asia or something. I mean, it’s a mushroom of immortality. They’ve got stories about I mean, it’s just just really well known.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yeah, and we will go into exact companies. But I’ve been told by a couple of different mushroom experts that you want to trigger pain kind of extract about 15% or so in the medicinal mushroom extracts to kind of have a level of clinical potency. Is there a percent? Regarding the terpenes that people should look for or an amount regarding the one three?

Jeff Chilton: Well, I mean, they don’t get as high as 15%, unless you’re really trying to build them up. But just in general, they would be somewhere around 4%. And, and the trouble with just even giving a percentage is that there’s no companies or very few labs that can actually analyze for tried terpenes, but we can analyze for beta glucan. So what you really want to do with any machine product doesn’t matter what it is, look for an analysis of the beta glucans. And here’s, here’s a little key and a trick is that it used to be that everybody would say, oh, our product has x amount of polysaccharides. Okay, well, the problem with that and Beta Glucan is a polysaccharide So, so that everybody would think, okay, yeah, we got lots of polysaccharides lots of beta glucans. The problem is that polysaccharides are actually this starches and so many extracts out there of whatever kind Come on starch carriers. So in some cases, when we analyzed machine products, the level of starch was as much as 60%

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Wow, okay. Wow. Yeah. So if you want to actually look at the certificate for the beta glucans, not the polysaccharide

Jeff Chilton: Absolutely. If companies just talking about polysaccharides they’re hiding something and, you know, we consider polysaccharide analysis for mushrooms to be absolutely useless. And we we’ve demonstrated that through our testing.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: That’s great. And then obviously the quality making sure there’s no other you know, heavy metals or joke like that pesticides or mushroom is generally grown organically, or do these are typically pesticides that may be given on a conventional kind of farming. 

Jeff Chilton: Well, you know what, there’s a lot of mushrooms probably the majority of mushrooms grown out there have pesticide use going on. It’s gotten much better. Certainly when I was at the mushroom farm in the 1970s. Justin, we had an actual program where it was like it on this day you spray this chemical a month down the line, you spray this chemical. I mean, it was a program for growing mushrooms and using pesticides and fungicides today, in the industry in the United States, they use a lot less than they used to but still, if you have the ability year you want to be looking for an organic we certified mushroom, I mean, and all our products are certified organic, and to me that’s really important.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: God and we’ll go over your stuff at the end here, but I’ll drop your website, realmushrooms.com great products there. Also, let’s kind of just back up a little bit. So we talked about some of the Beta Glucan, the one three Beta Glucan. We talked about the tritter pians I may be mispronouncing it for the last decade. Okay, tomato tomato, right, it works. So those are those the big kind of medicinal compounds that are active in mushrooms or another, like hidden compound we don’t know about yet.

Jeff Chilton: Well, there are a couple of those. But and what I want to emphasize here is Look, what scientists do out there when they look at any natural product is they fractionated and fractionated. And fraction it because they’re looking for the latest new drug. Right? So so you a person could say, oh, there are hundreds of compounds in mushrooms, and they all help in the activity. You know what? That may be true, but some of those compounds are going to only be there in minute amounts. And that’s just part of drug discovery, because they they find all these different compounds. So So really, what I focus on is look there are certain compounds occur and measurable amounts, they define this category like the beta glucan. And those are the ones that we can actually measure and use as markers for quality. So so that’s really important. One compound that I want to reveal to you right now that is it are in mushrooms and not into many other things. It’s a compound called ergothioneine. If you ever heard of ergothioneine?

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Ergothioneine I have not Can you talk about some of that what that is and what the benefits are?

Jeff Chilton: Well, ergothioneine is is a compound it’s actually an amino acid that they have found in a number of areas in our body, and they’re going we don’t produce it. What’s it doing there? And why is it concentrated in areas where there’s high oxidative stress, and then they’ve done a lot of studies with it and they indicate that it’s a very powerful antioxidant. In fact, it’s it’s It’s something that they’re thinking might even be a new vitamin. And mushrooms are one of the foods that contain high amounts of ergothioneine to the point where we now analyze every single product that we got for air go signing to establish a baseline and just to see okay, how much of this do we have in our mushrooms? So ergothioneine is one of those kind of special compounds we also analyze for a compound called air gost are all their gospel is the fungal sterile like our cholesterol, yes, in all fungi, all mushrooms, and and it is something that also has medicinal benefits and we can measure it as well. It’s something that that is has got some, some direct, basically anti tumor activities. It’s it’s something that that you know, plant vital sterols or something that is very beneficial. For us, so that’s another compound that we can measure and and use it as a measure for quality. And that’s really the key for what we do. We don’t try to build up anything in our products, we just want to have the profile that you expect to find in a dried mushroom. That’s what we’re looking for. So anytime we do an extract, we want to match it up on that profile. 

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: That’s great. Okay, so we have the ergaster all there. Let’s talk about some of the beta glucans. What are they doing to the your immune cells? I mean, I’ve seen some studies, they’re helping increase natural killer cells there is some of the terpenes are deactivating viruses. What do you know, based on your experience and your research you’ve done? What’s it doing to your immune system? How is it helping your body? 

Jeff Chilton: Well, these, these beta glucans, we actually have receptors for beta glucans. And these receptors are down in our our lower intestines are, they’re down there and so what how Beta glucans come down, they will, they will lock into these receptor sites, and then they will actually then potentially create or or essentially strengthen any immune response and create more immune cells like NK cells like macrophages, like T cells. So, that’s really where they essentially are going to help boost our our immunity and and what they’re considered is there can they’re considered a immune modulator. So they’re basically sitting there, they’re a potential creator. So they will essentially strengthen our immune response to whether it would be viruses or bacteria or other fungi. They’re there to essentially assist us and and you know, the way I look at that activity is preventive. I really see that as something that is, you know, in fact, we can be Taking them all the time. And they’re just sitting in the background, helping us out as we’re coping with all of these different stresses that come in, whether it be from bacteria, or whatever it is. 

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: It’s in functional medicine, kind of where I’m practicing with my patients. We’re testing their stress response, we’re looking at their adrenal and their cortisol rhythm. And one of the herbs I’ve used used clinically for a very long time are various adaptogenic herbs like ashwagandha is one of my favorite right here. And it seems to me based on some of the data that some of these medicinal mushrooms are actually having adaptogenic like a fact whether it’s buffering stress, or buffering the immune response. What’s your take on that?

Jeff Chilton: Oh, I think they’re, they’re, in fact considered to be adaptogens. And I would call them premier adaptogens especially something like Reishi I mean, absolutely. I mean, adaptogen really is something that that tries to keep us in homeostasis. It’s like this whole thing of balance and that’s kind of how I look at health. Is is disease is Cut going out of balance. And so what we’re really trying to do is get back to that homeostasis back to that state of balance and, and they’re there to help us, although there may be other things involved. Of course, like, you know, health is not just that simple. But again, yeah, adaptogen is something that will help us to, to mitigate those stresses that we have, or whatever they are, and bring us back into a state of balance. And I didn’t know that that to me is kind of like traditional Chinese medicine is all kind of based on that same principle there of balance and so adaptogens are something that will help us maintain that balance, which essentially means being healthy. I mean, you know, think about it for a second. If you’re healthy. You ever think about your health.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: You’re able to adapt you have a certain level of adaptability. 

Jeff Chilton: Yeah, well, and yeah, and and, and when you’re sick, all of a sudden you’re like, Oh, my God, you know, you start thinking about your health and what you have to do to come back into that balance. But when you’re healthy, you’re just cruising around thinking yeah, everything is great. It’s wonderful.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yeah 100% I know there are various mushrooms like cortis apps, for instance, there’s some data they help improve DHCP levels, which is a precursor hormone to a lot of sex hormones and it’s made by the adrenals and that helps with stress and inflammation. Can you talk more about sex hormone modulation via some of these medicinal mushrooms?

Jeff Chilton: Well, you know what, I know cortisol has been utilized and is considered to be in that category. Exactly the mechanism I’m not that certain of the mechanism myself and how it does that other than I know that it does have an effect on on oxygen utilization, which I think would be a big part of that. And you know, I think also we have to be very careful with something you know, like I’m not here to tell you Oh, yeah, take quarter steps and your your sexual your libido will improve or anything like that. I don’t know that for a fact. And in some cases, quarter seven, Even could be considered sort of like a doctrine of signatures kind of, kind of herb you familiar with doctrine of signatures if as if something looks like something that it must be helpful that and quarter steps is kind of a little bit phallic shaped, I mean, mushrooms are too, right. But and so it’s kind of like, okay. But I think you know what I think too, and there’s a lot of research done with core deception and it’s beta glucans. And it’s those effects I think anything that can help maintain or boost our immunity is going to have an effect on your, your basic libido and, and libidinous health.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: I work with a lot of hormone issues, and I strongly recommend not to ever go kind of whole hog go in on just one thing to be the panacea. You know, you obviously want to make sure you’re making diet, lifestyle changes and you’re getting to the root of the underlying issue and some of these things may be a really good palliative support, to kind of throw in there as an important tool. For sure. I agree with that. What about like your national killer cells. What about these helper cells? What about really stimulating these kind of first? You know, these are artists are natural killers, which are the guys that are on the grounds for longer. Exactly first responder to an infection. What what herbs or what mushrooms are best for that? What do you know about that?

Jeff Chilton: Well, you know what I mean, if you go out and read the literature, and there is so much data out there, on this activity and, and look, much of that data and much of that research is is in vivo? It’s in vitro. We don’t have a lot of clinical data on that on that. So So really, that kind of scientific research, I can read it and go Okay, yeah, this is what this is what happens but going much deeper than that. I mean, I’m not the scientist doing that kind of work.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: I know what happens you kind of have that the general you know, outset mechanism of what’s happening.

Jeff Chilton: Oh, you know what? There is so much there’s such a big body of research on the effects of beta glucans on in these kind of tests, I mean, thousands of papers. I mean, they’ve been studying beta glucans now for 30 or 40 years. And so, so that type of activity is something where, you know, I mean, when I looked at that research, I mean, I can only take it so far because I’m not a scientist doing that kind of work. So that’s not the kind of thing that i i really study too much and, and don’t have a hard time keeping up with it all, actually, but the actual mechanisms to me are more important, okay, actually, what is it? Is that fact is it in fact, stimulating these immune cells? Well, what are those immune cells do? Well, I’m sure a lot of practitioners like yourself or immunologists are, are much more capable about going deeper about exactly what they’re doing and how they’re working.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: But just in general, just That kind of hundred hundred yard stare. We’re like looking at it. All right big picture, we’re going back, we know that these compounds are having an effect modulating the immune system, mobilizing some of these natural killer cells, can you kind of connect the dots based on what you know, with medicinal mushrooms in cancer? What’s your experience with that your experience or in the literature, you know?

Jeff Chilton: Well, first of all, what I would say is, look, medicinal mushrooms are not going to cure anybody’s cancer. What they’re primarily used for is an edge event. In other words, there’s something that if you’re going through a, a standard chemotherapy or radiation or something like that, they’re going to help you your immune system, your body to cope with those two types of protocols which are tearing down your immunity and making you you know, sick to some degree. So that’s really where they come in. And, you know, in terms of folk remedies, I mean, mushrooms have been used as folk remedy for those kind of things, but terms of actually being a cure per se, I don’t look at them in that way at all i just i just consider them something that is going to help you to actually cope with this tremendous stress of not only the disease but also with the therapies that you’re that you know, science right now or the medical profession is actually using with people. So so you know, some of the some of the most well known drugs actually that have been produced from mushrooms one is called KSK. And the other is called PSP and they’re produced from Turkey tail and they but they are not like a just standard mushroom hot water extract or alcohol extract. There there actually have been fractionated Downton and extracted to the point where in Japan pFk is actually considered a drug and it is prescribed with cancer therapy. So that’s that’s an end. You know, it’s not like it’s it’s, I mean, it’s helping people. Maybe they’re getting a longer life by using that compared to the control groups. But there’s a lot of clinical data on that. But it’s not something that’s given to try and cure anybody. They’ve got another drug over there called Lenten and that is produced from Shiitake mushroom. And it is a it is unlike PS K, which is not a pure compound because it’s a protein bound polysaccharide Linton and is actually a pure beta 1316 glucagon, and it is utilized in the same way again, not alone, but along with these other therapies. And there’s another, a tremendous body of clinical work behind it to demonstrate that it does alleviate some of the symptoms and it also gives people a longer life than they otherwise would have, but not like, you know, significantly going to grow no longer live for years and years a year. Yeah, what you normally have.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: And when we talk about cancer, there’s never just one, you can’t have a cure when there’s dozens of different causes. If you’re getting exposed to toxins, or stress, or sleep or low vitamin D, or nutrient deficiencies, you can’t have just one care of nothing. There’s no such thing as a cure if there’s dozens of different potential vectors, but there’s things that we can do to kind of throw in there to support all the other things that we’re doing to, to bump up our immune response. That’s kind of the context of that.

Jeff Chilton: Well, yeah, and and, you know, I think the other thing that we have to remember is that cancer in some ways could be lifestyle related. It could be diet related people eating the wrong things, I mean, or, or smoking or drinking or or any of those types of drug abuses. I mean, so there’s a lot of factors involved. And, you know, in a way, the first thing you’d want somebody to do is go Okay, why don’t you back off all of that you probably would prescribe somebody a certain type of diet you say, you know, you shouldn’t be eating this. You shouldn’t be drinking that. You need to make some real changes if you want to help the protocols. So you’re going to give them and those kind of things that are so important and because it’s if you’re looking at something from a holistic way, which I’m sure you are, then then you know that there are so many different factors that you have to deal with.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yeah, and these are I consider them to be adaptogen functional medicine tools that are very powerful that we plug in to a comprehensive program. So like that. What other let’s just say less notorious things that are mushrooms are used for besides the common immune adaptogenic kind of immune kind of cancer boosting effects. What else do you see what else do you recommend for

Jeff Chilton: Well, you know, what’s really interesting is is there’s a mushroom right now that is just like, gotten so popular. It’s called Lion’s Mane you heard Lion’sMane at all, I use lion’s mane.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: I like big E’s Reishi and cortis apps and but maitake and shiitake but I haven’t really been using it too much, but I do have some.

Jeff Chilton: Well, it’s it’s pretty interesting because there’s They actually the thing about Lion’s Mane is that we have clinical trials out of Japan, where they’ve actually got, like 30 different people around age 70. And then they’ve got a control group of 30 people and they feed them three grams of lion’s mane, they give them a whole battery of tests. 90 days later, they test them again. And what they find is that the people taking the lion’s mane do much better. And then they stopped taking Lion’s Mane for a month, and now they’re back to baseline and the same as the control. So, so they’ve got a number of these different clinical tests with Lion’s Mane lion’s mane. Actually, they found from their research stimulates the production of what’s called nerve growth factor. And nerve growth factor is a protein that essentially helps to maintain and strengthen our our neuron production and our neural network. So So So if you can stimulate the production of this nerve growth factor because what they find is as you get older your production of nerve growth factor starts to go down a bit and so so now I mean and so there you know how it is they’re trying to tie all these things together to find out Okay, why is it that we have this cognitive sort of let down as we get older and and people’s memories start to you know, get a little bit wobbly and they can’t remember as well and then we have dimension Alzheimer’s and all those other things so so the fact that there is actually something like a lion’s mane that let’s just call it a nootropic, which is kind of a category these days you probably heard of it and yeah, and so it’s like, I’m mad. It is just like taken off because.. Well, the compound there’s a couple of compounds in Lion’s Mane that produces they’re called harisonones, arenasenes, arenaserens, and I mean, this is another one of those things where, when you look at the when you look at the literature, there’s probably a couple dozen different, let’s just say, analogs of these different compounds that create these effects and and will boost this nerve growth factor. And you know, we’re just get worse beginning of researching that even though it’s been used in traditional Chinese medicine for these types of issues for quite a while.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: That’s very cool. Yeah, when you look at these things you can read you can have a 20 page study, but if you walk away, what’s the bullet point mechanism? And what’s it doing and as long as you get that action point, that’s the the most important thing in my opinion, right? PhD pile higher and deeper, but you can you can also just get that the key take home action items, so I think that’s powerful. So any research on that connecting improvements and all timers or any neurodegenerative conditions at all?

Jeff Chilton: Actually, there is Yeah, they’ve got a couple studies on dementia. Okay, actually showing that it improves and also they have a few studies on depression, showing that it improves and you know what? Listen, it is not easy to get clinical trials with any natural product, or dandle not only that to get a good one because look, I’ve seen clinical trials done, and you look at them and go, okay, who sponsored them? And and who’s doing them and, yeah, you know, unless it’s a totally unbiased group, you have to be really careful. I like any research. I mean, you have to read the fine print of how this is done and who’s actually doing it. So these particular studies are done it Japanese universities, I like Japanese science, art or culture. Well, that as well. Yeah. And and

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: I think I was seeing things such as like liver or kidney cancer, like one of the first line therapies over in Japan is some of these medicinal mushrooms. I think is we see our quarter steps is like first line in Japan for for liver cancer.

Jeff Chilton: Wow. Well, well, you know what’s interesting about you saying that is that I was at a conference in China in the mid 90s. And it was a Ganoderma Reishi conference and there was a traditional Chinese medicine practitioner there older man, maybe it’s in his 50s or something like that. And I was talking to him and he said his number one herb for the liver was Reishi. Yeah, yeah. And he had times he said, he said he would, he would use as much as 30 dried grams of ratioed. In his treatments. And, you know, the one of the things that’s interesting about traditional Chinese medicine is that when they’re using their herbal formulas, it’s strong. It’s powerful. They put a lot in there, they want to see something happen. You know, it’s not like supplements. What a supplements tell you to take, I mean, tell you to take one or two capsules a day doesn’t matter whether you’re Hundred 50 pounds or 250 pounds, they’re telling you two capsules a day. It’s like, Come on, let’s get real here.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: That will 30 grams is significant in the capsule, the average ratio is 500 milligrams account.

Jeff Chilton: Well, and of course this is, yeah, this is 30 grams of dried mushrooms. So let’s just say if you if you were to do a 10 to one extract, you could you could get it down to three grams of extract or something like that, which still would be quite a lot. I mean, so So in other words, he was he’s just basically saying, look, we use a lot, we use a high dose. For us. It’s the main herb that we use for liver problems and I thought amazing, and and that’s where the tri terpenes come in. They’ve got a lot of data, long tried terpenoids with the liver.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: I know some of the mechanisms in regards to I’ll still call them trinitarians. I’m the static. Actually they deactivate viruses, any feedback on that. What do you know about the deactivation of viruses? How does that happen? Is it just like binding to And then making the virus less pathogenic.

Jeff Chilton: That’s, that’s really interesting. I couldn’t really answer that question that’s for a virologist, you know, you know, this is the thing, it’s like, you get into all of that research, and I can read a paper and maybe, especially these days, a week later, I’ve forgotten the whole thing. I mean, whereas the research that I do myself and the research that we do in my company, you know, I can go into that in great detail and what we’ve done there, but in terms of this other stuff, I can read it, but you know what it’s like, it’s just like, if you want to write a paper on something, you pull together all this research, you spend months, dealing with it, working with it, putting it into the shape that you want it in, and by the end of it, you’re an expert, right, and you know it backwards and forwards, it’s like but, man, I can’t do that anymore with a lot of that research because I’m busy doing other things

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: make sense? All the listeners have to know that there’s mechanisms out there, it can provide that benefit. That’s great. If you have anything to add, you know, any value you want to add to it above and beyond based on your experience, that’s great. But you kind of said a couple of things that I wanted to highlight you talked about a lot of the pharmaceutical research in some of these mushrooms are these kind of compounds or isomers. Within mushrooms, you see a lot of that with turmeric or curcumin as well, it seems like Big Pharma is trying to find this like, you know, active compound and isolated. Now we know just with natural compounds in general, you can’t really patent them unless you can find something and then twist it around a little bit and make it so it’s not found in nature. And then you could patent it. So if someone comes in and says, Hey, reishi mushroom as this amazing benefit, let’s put 100 million dollars into this, you know, to these studies, and you see this great benefit, guess what, you can’t get the ROI on your investment because everyone can now sell Reishi because there’s no patent so you have companies that are in there trying to make a drug out of it by tweaking it a little bit.

Jeff Chilton: That’s absolutely right. And that’s that’s where these particular products like Linton It’s a patented product, I mean, because it’s it’s actually a drug and it is like they pulled out this one very specific Beta Glucan for that mushroom. And so that’s what they’ve got a pure compound. And, you know, in what I do, and certainly in the general, let’s just say supplement industry or herbal medicine space, I mean, what we, I believe that any of these natural products, there’s multiple components, they’re all working together, and to try and build one up or split one off or anything like that. It kind of is not the way that a traditional herbalist or, or the way we would like to see these natural products use. We want to see the whole herb used and certainly we can concentrate them in an into an extract because it’s like going, Oh, how am I going to take 30 grams of Reishi. It’s like, you’re certainly not going to want to just eat it anyway. You might want to boil it down into tea and then you can Drinking, okay, but but again, supplement makers, their powders, nobody’s going to say okay, yeah, take 10 capsules of this particular product, they want to have a concentrate when we make concentrates, we want to make sure that the profile is similar to what the raw material has. Because we believe that all of those compounds that are in there need to be in there and should be in there for this to work the way it’s supposed to work.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: It gets really, really important. That’s good. So when you talk about I mean, there’s so many get my head wrapped around this here. So when we talked about some of these compounds, like you mentioned, the whole mushroom has a lot of other antioxidant, other beneficial properties that kind of work in synergy. So when you just pull one mech one compound out, you’re missing that beautiful matrix that was encapsulating it. So that totally makes sense. I get that. And what’s your take on dosing in general, I know that may be different from Reishi, the lion’s mane to cordyceps. Is there a general dosing structure that you like to adhere to based on weight or certain conditions

Jeff Chilton: Well, you know what, I’ve got a physician friend who was originally from Hong Kong where he studied traditional Chinese medicine. But then he became an MD. He practices in New York in 1992. He wrote a paper on the proper dose for a reishi mushroom and he went back and he looked at all of the traditional literature, everything he can find, and he came up and he said, Look, a common dose for that would be a two to five dried grams of the mushroom or extract equivalent. So if you were like, Okay, I’ve got a five grams if I do a 10 to one extract, that means I could do 500 milligrams as a daily dose and so I use that kind of as my guideline for all of the mushrooms I say look, two to five dried grams or or equivalent In terms of an extract and the other thing that we can do to which is which is really great is when we have these clinical trials. For example, with lion’s mane, these clinical trials are based on three dried grams of just Lion’s Mane powder. My God, that is not hardly anything really when you think about it, and just to give you an idea, okay, three dried grams. A normal mushroom is 90% water. So what that means is 30 grams of fresh lion’s mane, that would be like one Lion’s Mane one small Lion’s Mane that you would you would eat. So, three dried grams is not a lot and yet they were getting these benefits from that. And my thing is, you know, I kind of like and I’ve got friends in the herbal industry that have been there a long time making extracts and all that. One of my friends is like, I want my extracts to be strong enough that when somebody takes it, they’re going to feel something And I think that’s kind of interesting because, you know, that’s what, in a sense, the traditional Chinese practitioners are sort of doing when they’re giving people higher doses of these things. They’re like, we want to see something happen. We want to see people feel this, we want to see some benefits right away. We don’t want a low dose people and yeah, maybe it works. Maybe it doesn’t so so you know, and and look, I don’t want to get too much into dosing because I’m not a practitioner. I’m not on the front lines at all. So that’s something where someone like yourself or others would, would, you know, if you’re in clinical practice, you would see that you would see the effects. I don’t get that kind of feedback so much, but I really think that it doesn’t matter what it is you have to take enough of it to get the benefits.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Interesting. Yeah, I’ve been actually doing three to five grams in general for a very long time. So usually 500 milligram capsule doing six, and then if I’m acute when I’m sick, I’m up to 12 capsules, 556 grams a day. So I’ve seen that have to be very, very therapeutic. That’s excellent. And so when we’re looking at mushrooms, you know, we’ll go into specific brands, what are the things we should look for? To assess potency? What should we things we should look for in the back of the label? What should we taste for? You talked about Reishi kind of tasting bitter earlier. How can someone look on the back of a label and assess what’s going on?

Jeff Chilton: Well, you know, one of the things as a mushroom grower, I know the economics of growing mushrooms. You know, I mean, I’ve like I was on that big farm. I had a small farm myself for a while I know what the economics are. If you grow mushrooms, you can grow them fresh, take them to the market, you can make a living but the fact of the matter is, is that as supplements, we’re dealing with a dry powder. Mushrooms are 90% water. So the issue is that if you can get $5 as a grower for that pound of fresh mushrooms, if you dry it out, now you have to get $50 for that same pound of dried mushrooms and in terms of the supplement industry. The Economics don’t work. I realized that very early on. And so that’s why I spent a lot of time in China in the 90s. Working with growers and working with processors, and in 1997, I went to China with Octa, which is a large organic certification organization. And we held the first workshop for certification, organic certification of mushrooms in China 1997. So that’s where we grow and process all of our mushrooms. But in the United States, what companies do, there’s not a single there’s not a single company in the United States that grows a mushroom and sells that as a supplement unless they’re a small little farm selling their own supplements and growing their own mushrooms. But in terms of the industry, in general, it doesn’t happen because it’s not economically viable. So what happens is in the United States, we’ve got big companies producing mycelium, which is the vegetative stage of this organism that we call a mushroom They put this mycelium on sterilized grain. They grow it out on the grain. And in the end of the process, they harvested all dry it grind it to a powder, grain and all. So one of the things that I did is in 2015 is that it did a big study with 95 different samples 40, of which I bought off the internet. And they were all these mycelia grain products. We tested them for beta glucans. And the test also allowed us to test for alpha glucans, which are starches. Mushrooms don’t have starch. So so what we found was all of these us grown products were very low and beta glucans like around 5% very high in alpha glucan, which is the starch 30 to 60%. To me, that was obvious because they’re grown on grain and the grains not taken out of the product. A mushroom shouldn’t be 25 to 50%, beta glucagon, and there should be no starch and maybe one or 2% worth of glycogen. So so it was just all these products were just the exact opposite of what you want to get an emotional product. Well it turns out that those products right now dominate the market. And and a lot of companies don’t even tell you that you’re not actually getting a true Martian product. Some companies do. If you look at the supplements, fact some of them will say mycelium and then on the other, they will say, my ciliated grain of some sort oats or rice or something like this. But other companies who buy those raw materials, they’re being sold to those companies as mushroom.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: And even the companies that he what’s the fruiting body verse Well,

Jeff Chilton: okay, a fruiting body is a mushroom. Okay, and so, whereas just quickly, a mushrooms don’t have seeds, they have spores, or out in nature germinates into a very fine filament, multiple filaments come together and form a network. That network is called mycelium. That is the The vegetative body of this organism, the mushroom that comes up from that mycelium, that vegetative body produces a fruiting body that we call a mushroom. So, this vegetative mycelium, you can take that and and you grow it out in a laboratory. And actually that’s what they use that seed to grow mushrooms. But instead of actually using it as seed, they will grow it out. These companies will grow it out on the grain it’s sterile, to grind it to a powder. You know, a Tempe is. Yep. Typically, it’s 10 pages. Yeah, yeah, I mean, it’s cooked soybean with fungal mycelium. So you’re actually you’re actually eating mycelium. It’s a great food. And that’s what these products are, is they’re actually Tempe, disguised as a nutritional supplement.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: So how can people find the real deal then if we’re going to look in some of these companies aren’t saying it’s mycelium. fruiting bodies. What other resources can people utilize to to know what’s really going on with their mushrooms?

Jeff Chilton: Well, a couple things. One of which is which is made in the USA. Forget it. It’s one of these mycelium and grain products. Yeah. Number two, look, pour it out. Taste it. We were talking earlier, about Reishi. Right? pour out your Reishi capsule and taste it. If it tastes bland, it’s not Reishi it’s one of these grain products, regimes bitter. We used to do what we call the Reishi challenge. We do that at a trade show. And people would taste one and then they taste the Reishi extract and they go, Ah, holy shit, give me some water. You know, it’s like, powerfully bitter. I mean, totally. I’m not kidding you. So it’s a it’s really crazy. So, so I mean, I mean just and there are ways that we can know the other way which is really fun, which I love and you can use on any of these different products is you you get yourself a little bottle of iodine. You put about two or four you put on four capsules and a quarter cup of water. You Stir it all up, you put 10 drops of iodine in there, if there’s starch in there, it will turn black. Do that with a genuine mushroom product, it’ll turn starch in there, do that with a genuine mushroom product, the water will turn the color of the iodine, but it won’t go black unless of course, you know, some some of for example, some of our mushroom extracts are black already. So it’s hard to do a test with them but but some of them are not. And so you can put the drops in and it won’t turn and then it’s just another simple test.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Okay, and if people can call up the company and get their certificate analysis regarding what’s in there, what should they be looking for again regarding the 1311, Beta Glucan or the the terpenes what should they be looking at percentage wise

Jeff Chilton: Well, you know what for for the beta glucans you should be looking for anywhere you know depends from machine to machine, but anywhere from, like ratio you should be looking for, for something over 30% So, you’d be looking for 30 to 50% on your Reishi product. Yes, yes, that’s right. That’s right. So, so look for beta glucans. If it says polysaccharides, you know, forgetting most hackers are are meaningless. The other thing too is you can call it the company and say, Look, are there any grains in your product? You know, I mean, can you imagine being at paleo FX, and having somebody come up to me and they see my, you know, big mushroom thing behind me. I love mushrooms. And they they say, and I say like, Oh yeah, that’s great. And I asked them what brand they’re taking and I go like, oh, man, I hate to tell you this, but you’re taking a lot of grain powder, and they’re just like, nobody there pull their hair out, right? Because it’s like, I thought I was taking a mushroom product.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: And so the best sourcing that you find right now is Japan is that kind of where you grow a lot- 

Jeff Chilton: No, no we grow everything in China and-

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: I’m sorry you’re in China. All China. Okay. Oh, thank you. Kind of harvested there. 

Jeff Chilton: We have we have contract growers in China

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: farmers like big farms or

Jeff Chilton: Individual. I mean, individual farmers and

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: That must be difficult.

Jeff Chilton: Hey, dig this. China produces 85% of the world’s mushrooms.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: I believe it. It’s part of their culture. It’s embedded.

Jeff Chilton: It is 85%. I mean, and there are 10s of thousands of mushroom growers in China. And I’ve been there again since the early 90s. I’ve developed relationships. I have Chinese partners, they organize the growers. For me, we have beautifully brand new factories where we bring the dried mushrooms we produce our extracts, then we send the bulk powders over and then they all get I mean, Nam x which is my company, we sell our raw materials to hundreds of other companies that put them out under their own label.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: So with all the terrorists and China are you getting hit the Last year too,

Jeff Chilton: Man, don’t even talk to me.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Okay, well, you produce a great product. So you don’t have much competition over here, you know?

Jeff Chilton: Well, yeah, that’s true. But you know what the fact of the matter is, is those products that I’m telling you about, if you look at their front label, it says mushroom. And a lot of people are fooled by that, and you turn it over, and only a few of them will say mycelium, and in the other say, you know, my ciliated grains of some sort. So, unless you’re really paying attention, you don’t know. And so those I’m telling you, those companies have probably 70% of the market out there and because they’ve just been doing it for for quite a long time and they keep selling it as mushroom when it’s not mushroom and I’ve pushed back on that and they’re finally starting to, you know what, there’s an FDA compliance document, Justin, that’s been there since 1976. And it says, you cannot sell mycelium and call it or infer that it is mushroom. Hmm. Interesting FDA compliance done a lot of companies ignore that. They ignore that and why? Because look, FDA is got bigger fish to fry. Right? Oh, yeah.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: A lot of their bigger issues. Well, hopefully this information will help educate listeners, any feedback at all on psychedelic mushrooms?

Jeff Chilton: Yeah, they’re wondering about personal feedback. Yeah, well, yeah.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: If you have that, that’s fine. Do you grow them? micro dosing, or?

Jeff Chilton: you know, part of my studies at university back in the 60s was on the use of psychedelic mushrooms. Period. Yeah, I know. I know. We actually had them growing the Pacific Northwest and also I spent a year and a half in Mexico and 1971 72 tracking down people that use them using them myself, so I’m very familiar with them. And in fact, in 1973, I wrote a book called the mushroom cultivator, which is all about growing mushrooms. At home, it includes those in there if people are interested. So, so no, I’m very familiar with them. I think they’re tremendously beneficial. I think, you know, not only just like right now they’re using them for end of life issues. People have fear issues about end of life, they’re using them for mental illness, people now are using them as a trophic. Taking a microdose you know, like, micro dosing with them. You know, what, I think ultimately, they’re going to be revolutionary, as well as evolutionary. But it’s just a matter of how long those authorities out there allow it to proceed right now they’re allowing the researchers to do their thing and and you know, what, I never thought pot would be legal for God’s sakes. I mean, it’s like, I thought that would always be prohibited and then writes prohibition on it and look right now I’m like, I don’t believe it. And I don’t even smoke anymore, but I used to. Yes,

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: yeah. Interesting so with the psychedelic mushrooms are there different types kind of like you know in medicinal mushrooms?

Jeff Chilton: Well you know what there’s there’s a genus called Cyclops A B, which is so psilocybin is named after. And in that genus, there are dozens and dozens of species but there’s probably about 12 different species that are pretty powerful, reasonably similar in their effects. Some indigenous people look at them of having different qualities and that’s, that’s probably unlikely, but you’re going to get somewhat the same type of experience from them. Again, it’s really gets down to if you’re going to use them you really need to use the proper set, which is

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: LSD, was that an LSD and psilocybin or

Jeff Chilton: the what’s in there, the actual compounds psilocybin, so very different compound from from LSD. I mean, LSD is you take it in terms of micro grams, right, I mean, micro grams, I mean, small 200 micrograms, whereas With with psilocybin you’d be taking 1000 milligrams 2000 milligrams LSD is tremendously powerful, far more concentrated. Well I guess you could say that but it’s just a different type of compound it actually different way but it gives you a very somewhat similar experience and you know what, I have a positive view of that I don’t see anything again like you like I say setting setting and doing these things properly is really important.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Got it proper setting any particular dose or species of the medicinal or the psychedelic mushroom you recommend or you like personally?

Jeff Chilton: Oh, you know what the there’s there’s pretty standard information out there people can find that the the thing about it is is right now if you want if you want to get those mushrooms I mean there’s there’s like, millions of pounds of them grown every year. Wow. They’re everywhere. I mean, millions, I’m talking millions of pounds of them being grown. out there. It’s like,

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: did it just kind of grow naturally in nature? Do you have to do some things? Hey,

Jeff Chilton: hey, you’re down in Texas, they actually grow on the Gulf Coast. They grow in a cow pastures. Yeah, you can go out there and find them yourself there in the cow pastures and they’re not really illegal until you pick them up and put them in your hand.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: How do you differentiate if you’re the average person going in and hunting mushrooms? And how do you know a magic mushroom from a regular edible mushroom?

Jeff Chilton: Well, you really have to go with somebody who knows what they’re doing. You do not want to pick and eat any mushroom unless you’re absolutely certain you do not. I mean, it’s just like, you know, it’s not just mushrooms, but plants have poisons too. I mean, it’s just common knowledge or common sense that you’re not going to pick something and go Wow, that looks great. Let’s let’s go ahead and eat it right and it’s like yeah, no,

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: no anytime soon. The benefits of micro dosing for these magic mushrooms at all versus just regular.

Unknown Speaker: Well you know what, I think it’s a really interesting subject and and what people are looking for is a little bit of mental acuity, I mean, think about it for a second if all of a sudden your eyesight sharpened up a little bit or or all of a sudden your hearing sharpened up a little bit man listening to music or something on on these as on believable. And so people are getting, you know, these sort of like cognitive effects on micro doses where they just feel like they, they are little more focused, they feel like things are kind of coming together a little better. And this is something where we’re going to learn a lot more about it as more and more people come out and talk about it. And and more people kind of study the experience and see what’s going on there. But I think it’s an amazingly evolutionary step. And and I’m very much very positive about it and very much behind it. I hope it happens. We don’t we don’t sell those. But somebody Well, I mean, there’s, there’s already like, like I said, there are millions of pounds being being grown and sold out there right now there’s so many growers that you could not even imagine it.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: That’s great. And then regarding the you said the micro dosing, is that going to affect like coordination or you’re kind of describing is it more? Is it up regulate some of these things that wouldn’t affect you driving a vehicle or things like that? Or would it still compromise you physically?

Jeff Chilton: Well, you know, what, if it on a microdose, you’re probably okay, but you’re really going to have to know at what level you don’t want to get to because certainly nobody should be driving a vehicle. When there are two let’s just say hi. That’s not a good thing to do. It doesn’t really matter what substance you happen to be consuming. That’s not a good idea. I mean, you know what, dude, you know, take any substance and

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: dry and then legal, but you’re you’re saying and somewhat you’re kind of describing it in some ways that it can up regulate some of these senses, which is interesting.

Jeff Chilton: Well, no, it is very interesting. I mean, I mean listen, I don’t know have you ever have you ever you know,

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: I never had that experience in medicinal mushroom? Yeah, I’d like to at some point but like you said the settings really important yeah

Jeff Chilton: well you know what when you do them and and not just even a micro dose but do it a little bit over the threshold dose so you’re actually getting the experience and you go out in in a natural setting that you are already familiar with and you really like you will see and feel things that you’ve never felt before and it will really open you up to I think one of the most beneficial parts of that which is the realization that we are all connected nature everything all

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Dr. Justin Marchegiani here. Welcome to Beyond Wellness Radio. We got a fabulous guest guest here Jeff Chilton, who is a mushroom expert. Today’s talks all going to be about medicinal mushrooms, the ins the outs how they can improve your health. Jeff, welcome to the show how we doing?

Jeff Chilton: Hey, Justin, thank you so much for having me doing fine.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Excellent. Well, let’s dive in and tell the listeners about kind of your background. How did you even get into the mushroom industry? You’ve been doing it for a while. And what brought you here today?

Jeff Chilton: Well, you know what, I’m a born and raised in the Pacific Northwest, forests, rivers, lots of water, and in the fall, it rains a lot. And so it’s one of the best places in the world for wild mushrooms. And so, when I went to university, I had an interest in mushroom. So I studied mycology, but my major was anthropology and through anthropology I studied all about the use of mushrooms as food as medicine and in shamanism, but when universe It was over. It’s like, how do you get a job in anthropology? Right money now? So So I thought, well, you know, I’d love to learn how to grow mushrooms. And it turns out that there was only one mushroom farm in Washington State and it was 60 miles down the road from Seattle. I went down, I, I ended up getting a job. And I was there for the next 10 years, literally living with mushrooms. 

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Wow, amazing. Yeah. So when you started out this process, did you kind of have to learn the ins and outs of like, how to farm them, how to raise them, how to grow them? Like how did that process kind of unfold? Did you have to study from some really, you know, key mentors in this industry? Or did they just kind of didn’t actually happen organically on your own?

Jeff Chilton: Well, you know, this was a very large farm and we were growing 2 million pounds of mushrooms every year. I mean, there was there was 200 employees. And so I just started out at the bottom of this and there were a couple of mushroom growers there who are the head grower. So this operation and managers and I essentially was kind of like an apprentice to them. So over the next 10 years, I made my way up to being the production manager. And again, I mean, just think about this every day, every single crop and we’ve got like these crops and rotations, I’m seeing Justin I’m seeing 200 crops of mushrooms. Every year, every year 200 crops, think about a normal farmer and how many crops that normal farmer is going to see.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: That’s amazing. So you started out what were your favorite mushrooms to grow off the bat? So obviously, you may have some personal preference based off of what you take or what works the best on your physiology, what allows you to feel the best, what are your favorite ones off the bat for you?

Jeff Chilton: Well, first of all, you know, again, we’re growing Agaricus motions and that’s all we really had to eat at the time other than wild mushrooms. But while I was there, we had a Japanese scientist who was growing oyster mushrooms, enoki mushrooms and shiitake mushrooms and man hat Have you ever eaten shiitake mushrooms? 

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: I have Yes. 

Jeff Chilton: They’re delicious. They’re absolutely my favorite moment. Not only are they excellent in terms of just eating and nutritionally but medicinally they’re really solid so like shiitake mushrooms are one of those food as medicine. I’m foods.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Oh yeah really big immune booster. So what are your favorite one? So in practice I clinically use Reishi maitake, shiitake, cordyceps. You have Lion’s Mane, turkey tail. Those are some some of the more common medicinal mushrooms. Do you have any specific favorites that you’ve used clinically or that you’ve seen in general?

Jeff Chilton: Well, you know, my favorite is actually reishi mushroom because reishi mushroom, you know, with medicinal mushrooms, the key compound a medicinal mushroom is called a Beta Glucan. Yeah, and this beta glucan is what activates our immune system. So it’s a potential creator, something that strengthens our immunity all mushrooms have these beta glucans even just edible mushrooms that we think of as medicinal mushrooms day. Yeah, because the Beta Glucan makes up half of the cell wall of mushrooms. And so, so all mushrooms will have that. But medicinal mushrooms, the top medicinal mushrooms have a very specific architecture of that Beta Glucan that makes them active compared to the others. Reishi has probably the largest amount of beta glucans that went to Turkey tail in all of our analyses. And we analyze every single batch of product that we make ratios got one of the highest levels of beta glucans, but it also has these compounds called try terpenoids. And those are the bitter compounds. So so it’s kind of like Reishi is medicinal mushroom plus, and that’s the one if you’re in Asia or something. I mean, it’s a mushroom of immortality. They’ve got stories about I mean, it’s just just really well known.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yeah, and we will go into exact companies. But I’ve been told by a couple of different mushroom experts that you want to trigger pain kind of extract about 15% or so in the medicinal mushroom extracts to kind of have a level of clinical potency. Is there a percent? Regarding the terpenes that people should look for or an amount regarding the one three?

Jeff Chilton: Well, I mean, they don’t get as high as 15%, unless you’re really trying to build them up. But just in general, they would be somewhere around 4%. And, and the trouble with just even giving a percentage is that there’s no companies or very few labs that can actually analyze for tried terpenes, but we can analyze for beta glucan. So what you really want to do with any machine product doesn’t matter what it is, look for an analysis of the beta glucans. And here’s, here’s a little key and a trick is that it used to be that everybody would say, oh, our product has x amount of polysaccharides. Okay, well, the problem with that and Beta Glucan is a polysaccharide So, so that everybody would think, okay, yeah, we got lots of polysaccharides lots of beta glucans. The problem is that polysaccharides are actually this starches and so many extracts out there of whatever kind Come on starch carriers. So in some cases, when we analyzed machine products, the level of starch was as much as 60%

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Wow, okay. Wow. Yeah. So if you want to actually look at the certificate for the beta glucans, not the polysaccharide

Jeff Chilton: Absolutely. If companies just talking about polysaccharides they’re hiding something and, you know, we consider polysaccharide analysis for mushrooms to be absolutely useless. And we we’ve demonstrated that through our testing.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: That’s great. And then obviously the quality making sure there’s no other you know, heavy metals or joke like that pesticides or mushroom is generally grown organically, or do these are typically pesticides that may be given on a conventional kind of farming. 

Jeff Chilton: Well, you know what, there’s a lot of mushrooms probably the majority of mushrooms grown out there have pesticide use going on. It’s gotten much better. Certainly when I was at the mushroom farm in the 1970s. Justin, we had an actual program where it was like it on this day you spray this chemical a month down the line, you spray this chemical. I mean, it was a program for growing mushrooms and using pesticides and fungicides today, in the industry in the United States, they use a lot less than they used to but still, if you have the ability year you want to be looking for an organic we certified mushroom, I mean, and all our products are certified organic, and to me that’s really important.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: God and we’ll go over your stuff at the end here, but I’ll drop your website, realmushrooms.com great products there. Also, let’s kind of just back up a little bit. So we talked about some of the Beta Glucan, the one three Beta Glucan. We talked about the tritter pians I may be mispronouncing it for the last decade. Okay, tomato tomato, right, it works. So those are those the big kind of medicinal compounds that are active in mushrooms or another, like hidden compound we don’t know about yet.

Jeff Chilton: Well, there are a couple of those. But and what I want to emphasize here is Look, what scientists do out there when they look at any natural product is they fractionated and fractionated. And fraction it because they’re looking for the latest new drug. Right? So so you a person could say, oh, there are hundreds of compounds in mushrooms, and they all help in the activity. You know what? That may be true, but some of those compounds are going to only be there in minute amounts. And that’s just part of drug discovery, because they they find all these different compounds. So So really, what I focus on is look there are certain compounds occur and measurable amounts, they define this category like the beta glucan. And those are the ones that we can actually measure and use as markers for quality. So so that’s really important. One compound that I want to reveal to you right now that is it are in mushrooms and not into many other things. It’s a compound called ergothioneine. If you ever heard of ergothioneine?

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Ergothioneine I have not Can you talk about some of that what that is and what the benefits are?

Jeff Chilton: Well, ergothioneine is is a compound it’s actually an amino acid that they have found in a number of areas in our body, and they’re going we don’t produce it. What’s it doing there? And why is it concentrated in areas where there’s high oxidative stress, and then they’ve done a lot of studies with it and they indicate that it’s a very powerful antioxidant. In fact, it’s it’s It’s something that they’re thinking might even be a new vitamin. And mushrooms are one of the foods that contain high amounts of ergothioneine to the point where we now analyze every single product that we got for air go signing to establish a baseline and just to see okay, how much of this do we have in our mushrooms? So ergothioneine is one of those kind of special compounds we also analyze for a compound called air gost are all their gospel is the fungal sterile like our cholesterol, yes, in all fungi, all mushrooms, and and it is something that also has medicinal benefits and we can measure it as well. It’s something that that is has got some, some direct, basically anti tumor activities. It’s it’s something that that you know, plant vital sterols or something that is very beneficial. For us, so that’s another compound that we can measure and and use it as a measure for quality. And that’s really the key for what we do. We don’t try to build up anything in our products, we just want to have the profile that you expect to find in a dried mushroom. That’s what we’re looking for. So anytime we do an extract, we want to match it up on that profile. 

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: That’s great. Okay, so we have the ergaster all there. Let’s talk about some of the beta glucans. What are they doing to the your immune cells? I mean, I’ve seen some studies, they’re helping increase natural killer cells there is some of the terpenes are deactivating viruses. What do you know, based on your experience and your research you’ve done? What’s it doing to your immune system? How is it helping your body? 

Jeff Chilton: Well, these, these beta glucans, we actually have receptors for beta glucans. And these receptors are down in our our lower intestines are, they’re down there and so what how Beta glucans come down, they will, they will lock into these receptor sites, and then they will actually then potentially create or or essentially strengthen any immune response and create more immune cells like NK cells like macrophages, like T cells. So, that’s really where they essentially are going to help boost our our immunity and and what they’re considered is there can they’re considered a immune modulator. So they’re basically sitting there, they’re a potential creator. So they will essentially strengthen our immune response to whether it would be viruses or bacteria or other fungi. They’re there to essentially assist us and and you know, the way I look at that activity is preventive. I really see that as something that is, you know, in fact, we can be Taking them all the time. And they’re just sitting in the background, helping us out as we’re coping with all of these different stresses that come in, whether it be from bacteria, or whatever it is. 

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: It’s in functional medicine, kind of where I’m practicing with my patients. We’re testing their stress response, we’re looking at their adrenal and their cortisol rhythm. And one of the herbs I’ve used used clinically for a very long time are various adaptogenic herbs like ashwagandha is one of my favorite right here. And it seems to me based on some of the data that some of these medicinal mushrooms are actually having adaptogenic like a fact whether it’s buffering stress, or buffering the immune response. What’s your take on that?

Jeff Chilton: Oh, I think they’re, they’re, in fact considered to be adaptogens. And I would call them premier adaptogens especially something like Reishi I mean, absolutely. I mean, adaptogen really is something that that tries to keep us in homeostasis. It’s like this whole thing of balance and that’s kind of how I look at health. Is is disease is Cut going out of balance. And so what we’re really trying to do is get back to that homeostasis back to that state of balance and, and they’re there to help us, although there may be other things involved. Of course, like, you know, health is not just that simple. But again, yeah, adaptogen is something that will help us to, to mitigate those stresses that we have, or whatever they are, and bring us back into a state of balance. And I didn’t know that that to me is kind of like traditional Chinese medicine is all kind of based on that same principle there of balance and so adaptogens are something that will help us maintain that balance, which essentially means being healthy. I mean, you know, think about it for a second. If you’re healthy. You ever think about your health.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: You’re able to adapt you have a certain level of adaptability. 

Jeff Chilton: Yeah, well, and yeah, and and, and when you’re sick, all of a sudden you’re like, Oh, my God, you know, you start thinking about your health and what you have to do to come back into that balance. But when you’re healthy, you’re just cruising around thinking yeah, everything is great. It’s wonderful.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yeah 100% I know there are various mushrooms like cortis apps, for instance, there’s some data they help improve DHCP levels, which is a precursor hormone to a lot of sex hormones and it’s made by the adrenals and that helps with stress and inflammation. Can you talk more about sex hormone modulation via some of these medicinal mushrooms?

Jeff Chilton: Well, you know what, I know cortisol has been utilized and is considered to be in that category. Exactly the mechanism I’m not that certain of the mechanism myself and how it does that other than I know that it does have an effect on on oxygen utilization, which I think would be a big part of that. And you know, I think also we have to be very careful with something you know, like I’m not here to tell you Oh, yeah, take quarter steps and your your sexual your libido will improve or anything like that. I don’t know that for a fact. And in some cases, quarter seven, Even could be considered sort of like a doctrine of signatures kind of, kind of herb you familiar with doctrine of signatures if as if something looks like something that it must be helpful that and quarter steps is kind of a little bit phallic shaped, I mean, mushrooms are too, right. But and so it’s kind of like, okay. But I think you know what I think too, and there’s a lot of research done with core deception and it’s beta glucans. And it’s those effects I think anything that can help maintain or boost our immunity is going to have an effect on your, your basic libido and, and libidinous health.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: I work with a lot of hormone issues, and I strongly recommend not to ever go kind of whole hog go in on just one thing to be the panacea. You know, you obviously want to make sure you’re making diet, lifestyle changes and you’re getting to the root of the underlying issue and some of these things may be a really good palliative support, to kind of throw in there as an important tool. For sure. I agree with that. What about like your national killer cells. What about these helper cells? What about really stimulating these kind of first? You know, these are artists are natural killers, which are the guys that are on the grounds for longer. Exactly first responder to an infection. What what herbs or what mushrooms are best for that? What do you know about that?

Jeff Chilton: Well, you know what I mean, if you go out and read the literature, and there is so much data out there, on this activity and, and look, much of that data and much of that research is is in vivo? It’s in vitro. We don’t have a lot of clinical data on that on that. So So really, that kind of scientific research, I can read it and go Okay, yeah, this is what this is what happens but going much deeper than that. I mean, I’m not the scientist doing that kind of work.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: I know what happens you kind of have that the general you know, outset mechanism of what’s happening.

Jeff Chilton: Oh, you know what? There is so much there’s such a big body of research on the effects of beta glucans on in these kind of tests, I mean, thousands of papers. I mean, they’ve been studying beta glucans now for 30 or 40 years. And so, so that type of activity is something where, you know, I mean, when I looked at that research, I mean, I can only take it so far because I’m not a scientist doing that kind of work. So that’s not the kind of thing that i i really study too much and, and don’t have a hard time keeping up with it all, actually, but the actual mechanisms to me are more important, okay, actually, what is it? Is that fact is it in fact, stimulating these immune cells? Well, what are those immune cells do? Well, I’m sure a lot of practitioners like yourself or immunologists are, are much more capable about going deeper about exactly what they’re doing and how they’re working.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: But just in general, just That kind of hundred hundred yard stare. We’re like looking at it. All right big picture, we’re going back, we know that these compounds are having an effect modulating the immune system, mobilizing some of these natural killer cells, can you kind of connect the dots based on what you know, with medicinal mushrooms in cancer? What’s your experience with that your experience or in the literature, you know?

Jeff Chilton: Well, first of all, what I would say is, look, medicinal mushrooms are not going to cure anybody’s cancer. What they’re primarily used for is an edge event. In other words, there’s something that if you’re going through a, a standard chemotherapy or radiation or something like that, they’re going to help you your immune system, your body to cope with those two types of protocols which are tearing down your immunity and making you you know, sick to some degree. So that’s really where they come in. And, you know, in terms of folk remedies, I mean, mushrooms have been used as folk remedy for those kind of things, but terms of actually being a cure per se, I don’t look at them in that way at all i just i just consider them something that is going to help you to actually cope with this tremendous stress of not only the disease but also with the therapies that you’re that you know, science right now or the medical profession is actually using with people. So so you know, some of the some of the most well known drugs actually that have been produced from mushrooms one is called KSK. And the other is called PSP and they’re produced from Turkey tail and they but they are not like a just standard mushroom hot water extract or alcohol extract. There there actually have been fractionated Downton and extracted to the point where in Japan pFk is actually considered a drug and it is prescribed with cancer therapy. So that’s that’s an end. You know, it’s not like it’s it’s, I mean, it’s helping people. Maybe they’re getting a longer life by using that compared to the control groups. But there’s a lot of clinical data on that. But it’s not something that’s given to try and cure anybody. They’ve got another drug over there called Lenten and that is produced from Shiitake mushroom. And it is a it is unlike PS K, which is not a pure compound because it’s a protein bound polysaccharide Linton and is actually a pure beta 1316 glucagon, and it is utilized in the same way again, not alone, but along with these other therapies. And there’s another, a tremendous body of clinical work behind it to demonstrate that it does alleviate some of the symptoms and it also gives people a longer life than they otherwise would have, but not like, you know, significantly going to grow no longer live for years and years a year. Yeah, what you normally have.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: And when we talk about cancer, there’s never just one, you can’t have a cure when there’s dozens of different causes. If you’re getting exposed to toxins, or stress, or sleep or low vitamin D, or nutrient deficiencies, you can’t have just one care of nothing. There’s no such thing as a cure if there’s dozens of different potential vectors, but there’s things that we can do to kind of throw in there to support all the other things that we’re doing to, to bump up our immune response. That’s kind of the context of that.

Jeff Chilton: Well, yeah, and and, you know, I think the other thing that we have to remember is that cancer in some ways could be lifestyle related. It could be diet related people eating the wrong things, I mean, or, or smoking or drinking or or any of those types of drug abuses. I mean, so there’s a lot of factors involved. And, you know, in a way, the first thing you’d want somebody to do is go Okay, why don’t you back off all of that you probably would prescribe somebody a certain type of diet you say, you know, you shouldn’t be eating this. You shouldn’t be drinking that. You need to make some real changes if you want to help the protocols. So you’re going to give them and those kind of things that are so important and because it’s if you’re looking at something from a holistic way, which I’m sure you are, then then you know that there are so many different factors that you have to deal with.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Yeah, and these are I consider them to be adaptogen functional medicine tools that are very powerful that we plug in to a comprehensive program. So like that. What other let’s just say less notorious things that are mushrooms are used for besides the common immune adaptogenic kind of immune kind of cancer boosting effects. What else do you see what else do you recommend for

Jeff Chilton: Well, you know, what’s really interesting is is there’s a mushroom right now that is just like, gotten so popular. It’s called Lion’s Mane you heard Lion’sMane at all, I use lion’s mane.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: I like big E’s Reishi and cortis apps and but maitake and shiitake but I haven’t really been using it too much, but I do have some.

Jeff Chilton: Well, it’s it’s pretty interesting because there’s They actually the thing about Lion’s Mane is that we have clinical trials out of Japan, where they’ve actually got, like 30 different people around age 70. And then they’ve got a control group of 30 people and they feed them three grams of lion’s mane, they give them a whole battery of tests. 90 days later, they test them again. And what they find is that the people taking the lion’s mane do much better. And then they stopped taking Lion’s Mane for a month, and now they’re back to baseline and the same as the control. So, so they’ve got a number of these different clinical tests with Lion’s Mane lion’s mane. Actually, they found from their research stimulates the production of what’s called nerve growth factor. And nerve growth factor is a protein that essentially helps to maintain and strengthen our our neuron production and our neural network. So So So if you can stimulate the production of this nerve growth factor because what they find is as you get older your production of nerve growth factor starts to go down a bit and so so now I mean and so there you know how it is they’re trying to tie all these things together to find out Okay, why is it that we have this cognitive sort of let down as we get older and and people’s memories start to you know, get a little bit wobbly and they can’t remember as well and then we have dimension Alzheimer’s and all those other things so so the fact that there is actually something like a lion’s mane that let’s just call it a nootropic, which is kind of a category these days you probably heard of it and yeah, and so it’s like, I’m mad. It is just like taken off because.. Well, the compound there’s a couple of compounds in Lion’s Mane that produces they’re called harisonones, arenasenes, arenaserens, and I mean, this is another one of those things where, when you look at the when you look at the literature, there’s probably a couple dozen different, let’s just say, analogs of these different compounds that create these effects and and will boost this nerve growth factor. And you know, we’re just get worse beginning of researching that even though it’s been used in traditional Chinese medicine for these types of issues for quite a while.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: That’s very cool. Yeah, when you look at these things you can read you can have a 20 page study, but if you walk away, what’s the bullet point mechanism? And what’s it doing and as long as you get that action point, that’s the the most important thing in my opinion, right? PhD pile higher and deeper, but you can you can also just get that the key take home action items, so I think that’s powerful. So any research on that connecting improvements and all timers or any neurodegenerative conditions at all?

Jeff Chilton: Actually, there is Yeah, they’ve got a couple studies on dementia. Okay, actually showing that it improves and also they have a few studies on depression, showing that it improves and you know what? Listen, it is not easy to get clinical trials with any natural product, or dandle not only that to get a good one because look, I’ve seen clinical trials done, and you look at them and go, okay, who sponsored them? And and who’s doing them and, yeah, you know, unless it’s a totally unbiased group, you have to be really careful. I like any research. I mean, you have to read the fine print of how this is done and who’s actually doing it. So these particular studies are done it Japanese universities, I like Japanese science, art or culture. Well, that as well. Yeah. And and

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: I think I was seeing things such as like liver or kidney cancer, like one of the first line therapies over in Japan is some of these medicinal mushrooms. I think is we see our quarter steps is like first line in Japan for for liver cancer.

Jeff Chilton: Wow. Well, well, you know what’s interesting about you saying that is that I was at a conference in China in the mid 90s. And it was a Ganoderma Reishi conference and there was a traditional Chinese medicine practitioner there older man, maybe it’s in his 50s or something like that. And I was talking to him and he said his number one herb for the liver was Reishi. Yeah, yeah. And he had times he said, he said he would, he would use as much as 30 dried grams of ratioed. In his treatments. And, you know, the one of the things that’s interesting about traditional Chinese medicine is that when they’re using their herbal formulas, it’s strong. It’s powerful. They put a lot in there, they want to see something happen. You know, it’s not like supplements. What a supplements tell you to take, I mean, tell you to take one or two capsules a day doesn’t matter whether you’re Hundred 50 pounds or 250 pounds, they’re telling you two capsules a day. It’s like, Come on, let’s get real here.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: That will 30 grams is significant in the capsule, the average ratio is 500 milligrams account.

Jeff Chilton: Well, and of course this is, yeah, this is 30 grams of dried mushrooms. So let’s just say if you if you were to do a 10 to one extract, you could you could get it down to three grams of extract or something like that, which still would be quite a lot. I mean, so So in other words, he was he’s just basically saying, look, we use a lot, we use a high dose. For us. It’s the main herb that we use for liver problems and I thought amazing, and and that’s where the tri terpenes come in. They’ve got a lot of data, long tried terpenoids with the liver.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: I know some of the mechanisms in regards to I’ll still call them trinitarians. I’m the static. Actually they deactivate viruses, any feedback on that. What do you know about the deactivation of viruses? How does that happen? Is it just like binding to And then making the virus less pathogenic.

Jeff Chilton: That’s, that’s really interesting. I couldn’t really answer that question that’s for a virologist, you know, you know, this is the thing, it’s like, you get into all of that research, and I can read a paper and maybe, especially these days, a week later, I’ve forgotten the whole thing. I mean, whereas the research that I do myself and the research that we do in my company, you know, I can go into that in great detail and what we’ve done there, but in terms of this other stuff, I can read it, but you know what it’s like, it’s just like, if you want to write a paper on something, you pull together all this research, you spend months, dealing with it, working with it, putting it into the shape that you want it in, and by the end of it, you’re an expert, right, and you know it backwards and forwards, it’s like but, man, I can’t do that anymore with a lot of that research because I’m busy doing other things

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: make sense? All the listeners have to know that there’s mechanisms out there, it can provide that benefit. That’s great. If you have anything to add, you know, any value you want to add to it above and beyond based on your experience, that’s great. But you kind of said a couple of things that I wanted to highlight you talked about a lot of the pharmaceutical research in some of these mushrooms are these kind of compounds or isomers. Within mushrooms, you see a lot of that with turmeric or curcumin as well, it seems like Big Pharma is trying to find this like, you know, active compound and isolated. Now we know just with natural compounds in general, you can’t really patent them unless you can find something and then twist it around a little bit and make it so it’s not found in nature. And then you could patent it. So if someone comes in and says, Hey, reishi mushroom as this amazing benefit, let’s put 100 million dollars into this, you know, to these studies, and you see this great benefit, guess what, you can’t get the ROI on your investment because everyone can now sell Reishi because there’s no patent so you have companies that are in there trying to make a drug out of it by tweaking it a little bit.

Jeff Chilton: That’s absolutely right. And that’s that’s where these particular products like Linton It’s a patented product, I mean, because it’s it’s actually a drug and it is like they pulled out this one very specific Beta Glucan for that mushroom. And so that’s what they’ve got a pure compound. And, you know, in what I do, and certainly in the general, let’s just say supplement industry or herbal medicine space, I mean, what we, I believe that any of these natural products, there’s multiple components, they’re all working together, and to try and build one up or split one off or anything like that. It kind of is not the way that a traditional herbalist or, or the way we would like to see these natural products use. We want to see the whole herb used and certainly we can concentrate them in an into an extract because it’s like going, Oh, how am I going to take 30 grams of Reishi. It’s like, you’re certainly not going to want to just eat it anyway. You might want to boil it down into tea and then you can Drinking, okay, but but again, supplement makers, their powders, nobody’s going to say okay, yeah, take 10 capsules of this particular product, they want to have a concentrate when we make concentrates, we want to make sure that the profile is similar to what the raw material has. Because we believe that all of those compounds that are in there need to be in there and should be in there for this to work the way it’s supposed to work.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: It gets really, really important. That’s good. So when you talk about I mean, there’s so many get my head wrapped around this here. So when we talked about some of these compounds, like you mentioned, the whole mushroom has a lot of other antioxidant, other beneficial properties that kind of work in synergy. So when you just pull one mech one compound out, you’re missing that beautiful matrix that was encapsulating it. So that totally makes sense. I get that. And what’s your take on dosing in general, I know that may be different from Reishi, the lion’s mane to cordyceps. Is there a general dosing structure that you like to adhere to based on weight or certain conditions

Jeff Chilton: Well, you know what, I’ve got a physician friend who was originally from Hong Kong where he studied traditional Chinese medicine. But then he became an MD. He practices in New York in 1992. He wrote a paper on the proper dose for a reishi mushroom and he went back and he looked at all of the traditional literature, everything he can find, and he came up and he said, Look, a common dose for that would be a two to five dried grams of the mushroom or extract equivalent. So if you were like, Okay, I’ve got a five grams if I do a 10 to one extract, that means I could do 500 milligrams as a daily dose and so I use that kind of as my guideline for all of the mushrooms I say look, two to five dried grams or or equivalent In terms of an extract and the other thing that we can do to which is which is really great is when we have these clinical trials. For example, with lion’s mane, these clinical trials are based on three dried grams of just Lion’s Mane powder. My God, that is not hardly anything really when you think about it, and just to give you an idea, okay, three dried grams. A normal mushroom is 90% water. So what that means is 30 grams of fresh lion’s mane, that would be like one Lion’s Mane one small Lion’s Mane that you would you would eat. So, three dried grams is not a lot and yet they were getting these benefits from that. And my thing is, you know, I kind of like and I’ve got friends in the herbal industry that have been there a long time making extracts and all that. One of my friends is like, I want my extracts to be strong enough that when somebody takes it, they’re going to feel something And I think that’s kind of interesting because, you know, that’s what, in a sense, the traditional Chinese practitioners are sort of doing when they’re giving people higher doses of these things. They’re like, we want to see something happen. We want to see people feel this, we want to see some benefits right away. We don’t want a low dose people and yeah, maybe it works. Maybe it doesn’t so so you know, and and look, I don’t want to get too much into dosing because I’m not a practitioner. I’m not on the front lines at all. So that’s something where someone like yourself or others would, would, you know, if you’re in clinical practice, you would see that you would see the effects. I don’t get that kind of feedback so much, but I really think that it doesn’t matter what it is you have to take enough of it to get the benefits.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Interesting. Yeah, I’ve been actually doing three to five grams in general for a very long time. So usually 500 milligram capsule doing six, and then if I’m acute when I’m sick, I’m up to 12 capsules, 556 grams a day. So I’ve seen that have to be very, very therapeutic. That’s excellent. And so when we’re looking at mushrooms, you know, we’ll go into specific brands, what are the things we should look for? To assess potency? What should we things we should look for in the back of the label? What should we taste for? You talked about Reishi kind of tasting bitter earlier. How can someone look on the back of a label and assess what’s going on?

Jeff Chilton: Well, you know, one of the things as a mushroom grower, I know the economics of growing mushrooms. You know, I mean, I’ve like I was on that big farm. I had a small farm myself for a while I know what the economics are. If you grow mushrooms, you can grow them fresh, take them to the market, you can make a living but the fact of the matter is, is that as supplements, we’re dealing with a dry powder. Mushrooms are 90% water. So the issue is that if you can get $5 as a grower for that pound of fresh mushrooms, if you dry it out, now you have to get $50 for that same pound of dried mushrooms and in terms of the supplement industry. The Economics don’t work. I realized that very early on. And so that’s why I spent a lot of time in China in the 90s. Working with growers and working with processors, and in 1997, I went to China with Octa, which is a large organic certification organization. And we held the first workshop for certification, organic certification of mushrooms in China 1997. So that’s where we grow and process all of our mushrooms. But in the United States, what companies do, there’s not a single there’s not a single company in the United States that grows a mushroom and sells that as a supplement unless they’re a small little farm selling their own supplements and growing their own mushrooms. But in terms of the industry, in general, it doesn’t happen because it’s not economically viable. So what happens is in the United States, we’ve got big companies producing mycelium, which is the vegetative stage of this organism that we call a mushroom They put this mycelium on sterilized grain. They grow it out on the grain. And in the end of the process, they harvested all dry it grind it to a powder, grain and all. So one of the things that I did is in 2015 is that it did a big study with 95 different samples 40, of which I bought off the internet. And they were all these mycelia grain products. We tested them for beta glucans. And the test also allowed us to test for alpha glucans, which are starches. Mushrooms don’t have starch. So so what we found was all of these us grown products were very low and beta glucans like around 5% very high in alpha glucan, which is the starch 30 to 60%. To me, that was obvious because they’re grown on grain and the grains not taken out of the product. A mushroom shouldn’t be 25 to 50%, beta glucagon, and there should be no starch and maybe one or 2% worth of glycogen. So so it was just all these products were just the exact opposite of what you want to get an emotional product. Well it turns out that those products right now dominate the market. And and a lot of companies don’t even tell you that you’re not actually getting a true Martian product. Some companies do. If you look at the supplements, fact some of them will say mycelium and then on the other, they will say, my ciliated grain of some sort oats or rice or something like this. But other companies who buy those raw materials, they’re being sold to those companies as mushroom.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: And even the companies that he what’s the fruiting body verse Well,

Jeff Chilton: okay, a fruiting body is a mushroom. Okay, and so, whereas just quickly, a mushrooms don’t have seeds, they have spores, or out in nature germinates into a very fine filament, multiple filaments come together and form a network. That network is called mycelium. That is the The vegetative body of this organism, the mushroom that comes up from that mycelium, that vegetative body produces a fruiting body that we call a mushroom. So, this vegetative mycelium, you can take that and and you grow it out in a laboratory. And actually that’s what they use that seed to grow mushrooms. But instead of actually using it as seed, they will grow it out. These companies will grow it out on the grain it’s sterile, to grind it to a powder. You know, a Tempe is. Yep. Typically, it’s 10 pages. Yeah, yeah, I mean, it’s cooked soybean with fungal mycelium. So you’re actually you’re actually eating mycelium. It’s a great food. And that’s what these products are, is they’re actually Tempe, disguised as a nutritional supplement.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: So how can people find the real deal then if we’re going to look in some of these companies aren’t saying it’s mycelium. fruiting bodies. What other resources can people utilize to to know what’s really going on with their mushrooms?

Jeff Chilton: Well, a couple things. One of which is which is made in the USA. Forget it. It’s one of these mycelium and grain products. Yeah. Number two, look, pour it out. Taste it. We were talking earlier, about Reishi. Right? pour out your Reishi capsule and taste it. If it tastes bland, it’s not Reishi it’s one of these grain products, regimes bitter. We used to do what we call the Reishi challenge. We do that at a trade show. And people would taste one and then they taste the Reishi extract and they go, Ah, holy shit, give me some water. You know, it’s like, powerfully bitter. I mean, totally. I’m not kidding you. So it’s a it’s really crazy. So, so I mean, I mean just and there are ways that we can know the other way which is really fun, which I love and you can use on any of these different products is you you get yourself a little bottle of iodine. You put about two or four you put on four capsules and a quarter cup of water. You Stir it all up, you put 10 drops of iodine in there, if there’s starch in there, it will turn black. Do that with a genuine mushroom product, it’ll turn starch in there, do that with a genuine mushroom product, the water will turn the color of the iodine, but it won’t go black unless of course, you know, some some of for example, some of our mushroom extracts are black already. So it’s hard to do a test with them but but some of them are not. And so you can put the drops in and it won’t turn and then it’s just another simple test.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Okay, and if people can call up the company and get their certificate analysis regarding what’s in there, what should they be looking for again regarding the 1311, Beta Glucan or the the terpenes what should they be looking at percentage wise

Jeff Chilton: Well, you know what for for the beta glucans you should be looking for anywhere you know depends from machine to machine, but anywhere from, like ratio you should be looking for, for something over 30% So, you’d be looking for 30 to 50% on your Reishi product. Yes, yes, that’s right. That’s right. So, so look for beta glucans. If it says polysaccharides, you know, forgetting most hackers are are meaningless. The other thing too is you can call it the company and say, Look, are there any grains in your product? You know, I mean, can you imagine being at paleo FX, and having somebody come up to me and they see my, you know, big mushroom thing behind me. I love mushrooms. And they they say, and I say like, Oh yeah, that’s great. And I asked them what brand they’re taking and I go like, oh, man, I hate to tell you this, but you’re taking a lot of grain powder, and they’re just like, nobody there pull their hair out, right? Because it’s like, I thought I was taking a mushroom product.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: And so the best sourcing that you find right now is Japan is that kind of where you grow a lot- 

Jeff Chilton: No, no we grow everything in China and-

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: I’m sorry you’re in China. All China. Okay. Oh, thank you. Kind of harvested there. 

Jeff Chilton: We have we have contract growers in China

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: farmers like big farms or

Jeff Chilton: Individual. I mean, individual farmers and

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: That must be difficult.

Jeff Chilton: Hey, dig this. China produces 85% of the world’s mushrooms.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: I believe it. It’s part of their culture. It’s embedded.

Jeff Chilton: It is 85%. I mean, and there are 10s of thousands of mushroom growers in China. And I’ve been there again since the early 90s. I’ve developed relationships. I have Chinese partners, they organize the growers. For me, we have beautifully brand new factories where we bring the dried mushrooms we produce our extracts, then we send the bulk powders over and then they all get I mean, Nam x which is my company, we sell our raw materials to hundreds of other companies that put them out under their own label.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: So with all the terrorists and China are you getting hit the Last year too,

Jeff Chilton: Man, don’t even talk to me.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Okay, well, you produce a great product. So you don’t have much competition over here, you know?

Jeff Chilton: Well, yeah, that’s true. But you know what the fact of the matter is, is those products that I’m telling you about, if you look at their front label, it says mushroom. And a lot of people are fooled by that, and you turn it over, and only a few of them will say mycelium, and in the other say, you know, my ciliated grains of some sort. So, unless you’re really paying attention, you don’t know. And so those I’m telling you, those companies have probably 70% of the market out there and because they’ve just been doing it for for quite a long time and they keep selling it as mushroom when it’s not mushroom and I’ve pushed back on that and they’re finally starting to, you know what, there’s an FDA compliance document, Justin, that’s been there since 1976. And it says, you cannot sell mycelium and call it or infer that it is mushroom. Hmm. Interesting FDA compliance done a lot of companies ignore that. They ignore that and why? Because look, FDA is got bigger fish to fry. Right? Oh, yeah.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: A lot of their bigger issues. Well, hopefully this information will help educate listeners, any feedback at all on psychedelic mushrooms?

Jeff Chilton: Yeah, they’re wondering about personal feedback. Yeah, well, yeah.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: If you have that, that’s fine. Do you grow them? micro dosing, or?

Jeff Chilton: you know, part of my studies at university back in the 60s was on the use of psychedelic mushrooms. Period. Yeah, I know. I know. We actually had them growing the Pacific Northwest and also I spent a year and a half in Mexico and 1971 72 tracking down people that use them using them myself, so I’m very familiar with them. And in fact, in 1973, I wrote a book called the mushroom cultivator, which is all about growing mushrooms. At home, it includes those in there if people are interested. So, so no, I’m very familiar with them. I think they’re tremendously beneficial. I think, you know, not only just like right now they’re using them for end of life issues. People have fear issues about end of life, they’re using them for mental illness, people now are using them as a trophic. Taking a microdose you know, like, micro dosing with them. You know, what, I think ultimately, they’re going to be revolutionary, as well as evolutionary. But it’s just a matter of how long those authorities out there allow it to proceed right now they’re allowing the researchers to do their thing and and you know, what, I never thought pot would be legal for God’s sakes. I mean, it’s like, I thought that would always be prohibited and then writes prohibition on it and look right now I’m like, I don’t believe it. And I don’t even smoke anymore, but I used to. Yes,

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: yeah. Interesting so with the psychedelic mushrooms are there different types kind of like you know in medicinal mushrooms?

Jeff Chilton: Well you know what there’s there’s a genus called Cyclops A B, which is so psilocybin is named after. And in that genus, there are dozens and dozens of species but there’s probably about 12 different species that are pretty powerful, reasonably similar in their effects. Some indigenous people look at them of having different qualities and that’s, that’s probably unlikely, but you’re going to get somewhat the same type of experience from them. Again, it’s really gets down to if you’re going to use them you really need to use the proper set, which is

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: LSD, was that an LSD and psilocybin or

Jeff Chilton: the what’s in there, the actual compounds psilocybin, so very different compound from from LSD. I mean, LSD is you take it in terms of micro grams, right, I mean, micro grams, I mean, small 200 micrograms, whereas With with psilocybin you’d be taking 1000 milligrams 2000 milligrams LSD is tremendously powerful, far more concentrated. Well I guess you could say that but it’s just a different type of compound it actually different way but it gives you a very somewhat similar experience and you know what, I have a positive view of that I don’t see anything again like you like I say setting setting and doing these things properly is really important.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Got it proper setting any particular dose or species of the medicinal or the psychedelic mushroom you recommend or you like personally?

Jeff Chilton: Oh, you know what the there’s there’s pretty standard information out there people can find that the the thing about it is is right now if you want if you want to get those mushrooms I mean there’s there’s like, millions of pounds of them grown every year. Wow. They’re everywhere. I mean, millions, I’m talking millions of pounds of them being grown. out there. It’s like,

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: did it just kind of grow naturally in nature? Do you have to do some things? Hey,

Jeff Chilton: hey, you’re down in Texas, they actually grow on the Gulf Coast. They grow in a cow pastures. Yeah, you can go out there and find them yourself there in the cow pastures and they’re not really illegal until you pick them up and put them in your hand.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: How do you differentiate if you’re the average person going in and hunting mushrooms? And how do you know a magic mushroom from a regular edible mushroom?

Jeff Chilton: Well, you really have to go with somebody who knows what they’re doing. You do not want to pick and eat any mushroom unless you’re absolutely certain you do not. I mean, it’s just like, you know, it’s not just mushrooms, but plants have poisons too. I mean, it’s just common knowledge or common sense that you’re not going to pick something and go Wow, that looks great. Let’s let’s go ahead and eat it right and it’s like yeah, no,

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: no anytime soon. The benefits of micro dosing for these magic mushrooms at all versus just regular.

Unknown Speaker: Well you know what, I think it’s a really interesting subject and and what people are looking for is a little bit of mental acuity, I mean, think about it for a second if all of a sudden your eyesight sharpened up a little bit or or all of a sudden your hearing sharpened up a little bit man listening to music or something on on these as on believable. And so people are getting, you know, these sort of like cognitive effects on micro doses where they just feel like they, they are little more focused, they feel like things are kind of coming together a little better. And this is something where we’re going to learn a lot more about it as more and more people come out and talk about it. And and more people kind of study the experience and see what’s going on there. But I think it’s an amazingly evolutionary step. And and I’m very much very positive about it and very much behind it. I hope it happens. We don’t we don’t sell those. But somebody Well, I mean, there’s, there’s already like, like I said, there are millions of pounds being being grown and sold out there right now there’s so many growers that you could not even imagine it.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: That’s great. And then regarding the you said the micro dosing, is that going to affect like coordination or you’re kind of describing is it more? Is it up regulate some of these things that wouldn’t affect you driving a vehicle or things like that? Or would it still compromise you physically?

Jeff Chilton: Well, you know, what, if it on a microdose, you’re probably okay, but you’re really going to have to know at what level you don’t want to get to because certainly nobody should be driving a vehicle. When there are two let’s just say hi. That’s not a good thing to do. It doesn’t really matter what substance you happen to be consuming. That’s not a good idea. I mean, you know what, dude, you know, take any substance and

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: dry and then legal, but you’re you’re saying and somewhat you’re kind of describing it in some ways that it can up regulate some of these senses, which is interesting.

Jeff Chilton: Well, no, it is very interesting. I mean, I mean listen, I don’t know have you ever have you ever you know,

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: I never had that experience in medicinal mushroom? Yeah, I’d like to at some point but like you said the settings really important yeah

Jeff Chilton: well you know what when you do them and and not just even a micro dose but do it a little bit over the threshold dose so you’re actually getting the experience and you go out in in a natural setting that you are already familiar with and you really like you will see and feel things that you’ve never felt before and it will really open you up to I think one of the most beneficial parts of that which is the realization that we are all connected nature everything all

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Do you like I know with like eyewash cut there’s certain herbs you combine it with to make the hangover kind of feeling less is do you combine it with anything to neutralize certain feeling?

Jeff Chilton: no, you don’t affect combined with anything? No, just take it just as it is. Yeah. And the beauty of it too is that you can actually get the real thing I mean, I mean look back in the 60s. So much of what was going around were like pills. You’re like, you know, someone says, Oh yeah, try this. I had a great experience and you’re like, really? Should I try that or not? I’m yeah, I better know that person very well. And I’m not going to be at who knows what a concert is something says here, try this. Take it. I’m like, Oh, yeah, sure. I’ll just take that pill. No, it’s like, No, no, no, no, be smart about it. Be be cognizant about the fact that you want to be in a in an environment that is supportive and comfortable and something that’s not threatening. You don’t want to be like, especially at a higher dose. You don’t want to be sitting there in the end somebody knocking at the door and you’re like, Who the hell is that? right? Exactly. Well, those are the phone rings.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: This conversation is taking so many turns. So we talked about the medicinal benefits for your health, for stress for cancer, and then we talked about the whole magic mushroom section. I think we hit it pretty good. Jeff, is there anything else you want to leave the listeners with? I mean, your website is real mushrooms. com great information there anything else? We haven’t quite touched upon that you want to highlight here briefly.

Jeff Chilton: Well, well, a couple things. One of which is is the Nammex.com is the website for my company, the main company. And what I like to say is we got a lot of information there. So people should go there. We’ve got NAMMEX. 

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: We’ll put the links below in the show notes below. Realmushrooms.com as well.

Jeff Chilton: and and the other thing is, look, what I tell people all the time is mushrooms are the Forgotten food. They’re the ones that are sitting right in between plants and animals and they’re a food that I everybody should put those into their diet. They’re a great food, high in fiber, they’ve got these medicinal compounds as well as very nutritious. So, get out there, start eating mushrooms, start putting them into your diet. It’s really important and it’s a wonderful food as medicine.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: What’s the mushroom it’s like the real tall skinny ones that they serve in the steak restaurants

Jeff Chilton: and like kind of very light colored. Yes, yes. And enoki, I love them. Oh, yeah, I mean, but I mean if you apply them and bring them home and you strip them apart and they’re like noodles you fry them up there currently. Yeah. Fabulous. That’s great. Yeah, one of my favorites.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Well, I really appreciate you sharing this great Intel here there any other questions that you’d love to answer your passionate about that I didn’t ask you yet that you want to hit?

Jeff Chilton: No, I think we’ve really covered it really well, you know, I and you know, it was really fun talking to you and I really enjoyed being here a lot. So thank you so much for having me.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Well, Jeff, thank you so much. We’ll be back. Look forward to checking in with you down the road. You have a great awesome bye.: Do you like I know with like eyewash cut there’s certain herbs you combine it with to make the hangover kind of feeling less is do you combine it with anything to neutralize certain feeling?

Jeff Chilton: no, you don’t affect combined with anything? No, just take it just as it is. Yeah. And the beauty of it too is that you can actually get the real thing I mean, I mean look back in the 60s. So much of what was going around were like pills. You’re like, you know, someone says, Oh yeah, try this. I had a great experience and you’re like, really? Should I try that or not? I’m yeah, I better know that person very well. And I’m not going to be at who knows what a concert is something says here, try this. Take it. I’m like, Oh, yeah, sure. I’ll just take that pill. No, it’s like, No, no, no, no, be smart about it. Be be cognizant about the fact that you want to be in a in an environment that is supportive and comfortable and something that’s not threatening. You don’t want to be like, especially at a higher dose. You don’t want to be sitting there in the end somebody knocking at the door and you’re like, Who the hell is that? right? Exactly. Well, those are the phone rings.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: This conversation is taking so many turns. So we talked about the medicinal benefits for your health, for stress for cancer, and then we talked about the whole magic mushroom section. I think we hit it pretty good. Jeff, is there anything else you want to leave the listeners with? I mean, your website is real mushrooms. com great information there anything else? We haven’t quite touched upon that you want to highlight here briefly.

Jeff Chilton: Well, well, a couple things. One of which is is the Nammex.com is the website for my company, the main company. And what I like to say is we got a lot of information there. So people should go there. We’ve got NAMMEX. 

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: We’ll put the links below in the show notes below. Realmushrooms.com as well.

Jeff Chilton: and and the other thing is, look, what I tell people all the time is mushrooms are the Forgotten food. They’re the ones that are sitting right in between plants and animals and they’re a food that I everybody should put those into their diet. They’re a great food, high in fiber, they’ve got these medicinal compounds as well as very nutritious. So, get out there, start eating mushrooms, start putting them into your diet. It’s really important and it’s a wonderful food as medicine.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: What’s the mushroom it’s like the real tall skinny ones that they serve in the steak restaurants

Jeff Chilton: and like kind of very light-colored. Yes, yes. And enoki, I love them. Oh, yeah, I mean, but I mean if you apply them and bring them home and you strip them apart and they’re like noodles you fry them up there currently. Yeah. Fabulous. That’s great. Yeah, one of my favorites.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Well, I really appreciate you sharing this great Intel here there any other questions that you’d love to answer your passionate about that I didn’t ask you yet that you want to hit?

Jeff Chilton: No, I think we’ve really covered it really well, you know, I and you know, it was really fun talking to you and I really enjoyed being here a lot. So thank you so much for having me.

Dr. Justin Marchegiani: Well, Jeff, thank you so much. We’ll be back. Look forward to checking in with you down the road. You have a great awesome bye.


References:

https://justinhealth.com/

Audio Podcast:  

http://justinhealth.libsyn.com/medicinal-mushrooms-and-their-health-benefits-with-jeff-chilton-podcast-261

 

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