Monday, March 05, 2007

all things mushroom

The mushroom is a facinating organic form. Many species are edible, used extensively in cooking. Several varieties of mushrooms are high in fiber and protein, and provide vitamins such as thiamine (B1), riboflavin (B2), niacin (B3), biotin (B7), cobalamins (B12) and ascorbic acid (C), as well as minerals, including iron, selenium, potassium and phosphorus.

Mushrooms have been used for thousands of years in Traditional East Asian Medicine. Maitake, shiitake, and reishi mushrooms shown to have medicinal benefits of boosting heart health, lower the risk of cancer, promoting immune function, ward off viruses, bacteria, reduce inflammation, combat allergies, help balance blood sugar levels, and support the body's detoxification mechanisms.

Others still are toxic, mind-altering, or even bioluminescent. Mycologists and Ethnobotanists alike have studied only a fraction of the 14,000 species of mushrooms with more than 140,000 possible others that are in the mushroom and fungus species simultaneously (1.5 million fungi).

Mushrooms can be also used for dyeing wool and other natural fibers. The chromophores of mushrooms are organic compounds and produce strong and vivid colors, and all colors of the spectrum can be achieved with mushroom dyes. Before the invention of synthetic dyes the mushrooms were the primary sources on dyeing textiles. This technique has survived in the Scandinavian country of Finland until today. Mushrooms can also be used as fire starters, the famous Iceman was found carrying these tinder type mushrooms. New development in the fields of effective biological remediation and filtration technologies are producing ever more patents for use in things such as oil spill clean up. Now, maybe funghi can even be used for biofuel (via Treehugger). Ah, the magic of mushrooms!!

Mushroom Bib

Mushroom Ring

Mushroom Print

Mushroom Shelf

Mushroom Cards

Mushroom Thumbtacks

Mushroom Photo

Mushrooms for the Garden

Mushroom Lamps

Mushroom Lamp

Mushroom Nightlight

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