– Common names include hoelen, poria, tuckahoe, China root, fu ling and matsuhodo
– is a fungus in the family Polyporaceae-
It is a wood-decay fungus but has a subterranean growth habit.
As a matter of fact, this is a white fungus on wood, in particular on the roots of Japanese red pine and masson pine in the Pinaceae family.
– Today it is wild or cultivated, mainly produced in Yunnan, Anhui, Hubei, Henan, Sichuan and other places in China.
– The species that grow in Yunnan, called “Yun Ling”, is better in quality
Wolfiporia extensa (Peck) Ginns (syn. Poria cocos F.A.Wolf))( chin. : 茯苓)
– It is notable in the development of a large, long-lasting underground sclerotium that resembles a small coconut.
– This sclerotium called “(Chinese) Tuckahoe” or fu-ling, is not the same as the true tuckahoe used as Indian bread by Native Americans, which is the arrow arum, Peltandra virginica, a flowering tuberous plant in the arum family
– Poria, also called Fu Ling, is a famous home-grown bulk Chinese herb, which has been used medicinally for about 2,000 years.
– Owing to its wide range of medical uses and neutral nature, it is honored as dampness-eliminating panacea and one out of Eight Treasures
– W. extensa is also used extensively as a medicinal mushroom in Chinese medicine.
– Indications for use in the traditional Chinese medicine include promoting urination, to invigorate the spleen function (i.e., digestive function), and to calm the mind.
-Wolfiporia extensa is a source of a triterpenoid compound, pachymic acid, which has been the object of scientific study based upon the mushroom’s role in traditional Chinese medicine. -The species is often called cocos in this context.
– Diuretic effect. Experiments showed that poria mushroom alone had no diuretic effect at all. However, when used in formula of Wu Ling San, it showed significant diuresis in dogs by intravenous injection and healthy people and rabbit by oral decoction. And increased excretion of sodium, potassium, chloride was found in dogs. But it was reported that the main diuretic herbs in this formula are Gui Zhi (Cinnamon Twig), Ze Xie (Water Plantain Root), and Bai Zhu (Atractylodes);
– Antibacterial effect. Experiment in vitro found no bacteriostatic action. Poria extract by ethanol instead of water can kill leptospira in vitro;
– Effects on the digestive system. This herb can directly relax the isolated rabbit intestine, prevent pylorus ligation-induced gastric ulcer in rats, and reduce stomach acid;
– Other effects. It can lower blood sugar. Its tincture and infusion can inhibit the isolated toad heart. Poria cocos extract by ether or ethanol can strengthen cardiac contractility. But it showed no antiemetic effect to digitalis induced vomiting.
– Studies have shown that one of the main benefits of poria is that it contains anti-cancer properties. It is widely used in Chinese medicine to treat malignant tumors. Furthermore, poria stimulates the immune system and inhibits the growth and proliferation of various tumors
– Poria also helps enhance the positive effects of cancer treatments like radiation and chemotherapy while negating some of their side effects.
– Skin conditions like psoriasis can be treated with poria. It contains powerful anti-inflammatory properties that are beneficial to people suffering from psoriasis.
– This mushroom is used in topical applications to nourish, and moisturize the skin and eliminate problems like pimples, acne, oily skin, wrinkles, and dark spots.
– Due to its anti-inflammatory properties, poria is now being commonly used in a number of cosmetic products to enhance beauty and youthfulness.
– Poria helps in increasing urination and reduces the accumulation of fluid in the body. Therefore,
it is a good treatment for urinary problems, and edema.
– Poria is also well known for correcting problems related to the digestive system such as diarrhea, constipation, acidity, and other gastrointestinal issues. It promotes the discharge of digestive fluids and helps in better digestion and transit of food in the gastrointestinal tract.
– Poria is recommended for maintaining good liver, spleen and kidney health and preventing symptoms associated with the improper functioning of any of these organs.
– In Chinese medicine, poria is administered to patients suffering from problems like insomnia, restlessness, exhaustion, nervous anxiety, mental tension,amnesia and other sleep related problems.
– Poria helps prevent and arrest the build up of antibodies in the kidneys that can ultimately lead to kidney failure.
– Experts recommend taking poria as a nourishing supplement in such cases for a number of weeks to stop inflammation in the kidneys.
– The action of poria is considered to be even more powerful compared to conventional steroids and drugs used for this purpose and negative side effects like weight gain, engorgement, and exhaustion can be avoided.
– Treat cough and phlegm