The Red Belted mushroom or Fomitopsis pinicola is one of the most common medicinal m
ushrooms that can be found from North America, Alaska to California.
The information below was used in one of my presentations on Introductory to Medicinal Mushrooms at the University of Saskatchewan where we reviewed many other medicinal mushrooms in the lecture.
This is a short monograph provided for your information. If you are considering using medicinal mushrooms in your health regimen I suggest working with your Naturopathic Doctor, especially for any specific health concerns.
Here is a short monograph of this wonderful mushroom. Keep in mind that even though this mushroom is named after the red belt around it's edge, it doesn't always have that red belt! Make sure you are identifying your mushrooms correctly. Practice, practice, practice!
Spore Print: White to pale yellowish
Harvest: Year round
Range: Northern North America, Alaska to California
White to pale yellow when young, knoblike
Brown with reddish near margin, mature
Shelf-like to hoof shaped
Fleshy, hard and dense
Underside is white to yellowish
Habitat: Stumps, trunks, logs of dead coniferous trees
Preparation: Thinly slice or breaks small pieces when fresh then dry
Grows on more than 100 host species
Pinicola means “inhabiting pine”, its most common home
It is the most common polypore but some sites have it listed for $310/pound for dried tea!
The Cree used it to stop bleeding and as a powerful emetic
The Blackfoots used it to move fire and as a purgative
The Northern Dene smoked it with tobacco to keep it burning and to relieve headaches
The Iroquois used it to flavor their soups, for nutrition and natural preservative
Anti-tumor, anti-bacterial, anti-viral, immuno-modulating, anti-pathogenic, anti-diabetic, anti-inflammatory, adaptogenic
30 mg/day shows a prevention rate of 51.2% against sarcoma & cancer cells
Daily dose as a tonic is used as an effective anti-inflammatory
Has been shown to regulate blood sugar
Persistent or intermittent fevers
Mushroom poisoning and/or allergic reactions can occur.
DO NOT EAT any mushrooms you are not absolutely sure is not poison!
Identify correctly, this can be tricky!
If you aren’t sure DO NOT EAT IT!
DO NOT assume a mushroom is ok to eat because you’ve seen wildlife eating it. Deer seek out the Amanita family
Our metabolisms are different
As little as 50 grams (1.7 oz) of the death cap Amanita phalloides can kill an adult
It can take 6-24 hours for the symptoms of mushroom poisoning to show, by which time it’s too late
Saskatchewan Poison Center 1-866-454-1212
Paul Stamets: Fungi Perfecti
The Fungal Pharmacy: Medicinal Mushrooms of Western Canada
Mushroom Essences: Vibrational Healing from the Kingdom Fungi
Ninetta (Nina) Savino