Phellinus linteus
Phellinus linteus

Phellinus linteus, Natural Sang Hwang has long been recognized as said in the old documents “If you can find a thousand years old lingzhi on an old Mulberry tree, you can save a dying person”.  

Phellinus linteus has been widely used in Japan, Korea and China.  In 1993, Korea has succeeded in developing an anti-tumor medicine from Phellinus linteus.  In 1968, Dr. Ikegawa’s research team released their paper “Anti-tumor action of some basidiomycetes, especially Phellinus linteus” in a Japanese medicinal journal; Phellinus linteus became very popular among the researchers and scientists.   The efficacy of natural vs cultivated Phellinus mushrooms: “Artificially cultivated Phellinus linteus may be short on efficacy.  Only natural ones are genuine Phellinus linteus.”  Phellinus linteus grows naturally in trunks of willow, paper mulberry and elm tree that is more than 100 years old, and shall grow for minimum 30 to 40 years to make a fruit body being used for medical application.  In addition, the growth conditions such as humidity, temperature and lighting are very delicate, so that Phellinus linteus is very rare in the nature.  That is the reason why, it is almost impossible to collect and take a fruit body in the nature.

Phellinus linteus is included in Phellinus genus of Hymenochaetaceae family of Aphylloporales order in mushroom class (Basidiomycetes) that mostly consists of fungi of medical use and edible fungi among molds.  It is called Meshima in Japan (Danjo Island), Sanghwang in Korea.  Phellinus linteus is written as Sang-I in “Shin-Nong-Bon-Cho-Kyung” of China, Sang Hwang and Sang-Shin in Yak-Sung-Ron of Gyeon Ip-an in Tang era of China, Ho-son-an in Yu-Yang-Jap-Jo of Dan Seoung-sik, Sang-Hwang-Go in Chan-Yo-Gi-Bang, Sang-I and Sang Hwang in Bon-Cho-Gang-Mok of Lee Si-Jin in Ming Dynasty of China and Sang-I and Sang-Hwang in Dong-I-Bo-Gam of Her Jun.  In addition, Big Dictionary of Chinese Medicine (Joong-Yak-Dae-Sajeon; Sanghai Science Publishing Company) has the terms such as Sang-Shin, Sang-I, Sang-Hwang-Go and Ho-Son-An. 

In the tradition Chinese medicine, Sang Hwang (Phellinus linteus) was classified as Lingzhi or Reishi. Sang Hwang  (Phellinus linteus) is the most highly rated herb category in terms of multiple benefit and absence of side effects.  As a result from knowledge accumulated through 4000 years of human observation, it asserts that health can be maintained by sustaining the right balance with the body and the disease can be cured by restoring this balance through nutrition, including medicinal herbs, exercise and mental peace.  In the other words, a disease is believed to be the tip of an iceberg, the result of the underlying imbalance of the body, which must be restored.

The 2000 years old medical book: Serg Nongs Herbal classic;  considered today as the oldest book on oriental herbal medicine, classifies 365 species of roots of grass, woods, furs, animals and stones separates herbal medicines into 3 catagories.  The first category, called superior, includes herbs effective for multiple diseases and mostly responsible for maintaining and restoring the body balance.   They have no unfavorable side effects.  The second category, middle, comprises tonics and boosters and their consumption must not be prolonged.  The third category, low, must be taken usually in small dosages and for specific ailments. This category includes some poisonous herbs.

Sang Hwang (Phellinus linteus) ranked number one of the superior medicines, is the most exalted medicine in ancient times and has been used for perpetual youth and longevity.  All observations show that Sang Hwang (Phellinus linteus) has no side effects and can be consumed in high dosages and in parallel with other medications.
Sang Hwang (Phellinus linteus) has been revered as herbal medicines for thousands of years in China and Japan. Emperors of the great Chinese Dynasties and Japanese royalty drank tea and concoction of the Sang Hwang (Phellinus linteus) for vitality and long life.  In Chinese History, the great Emperor Qin (Qin Chi Huang, 220 B.C.) once sent 3000 boys and girls to Japan’s islands to search for a kind of lingzhi for the elixir of eternal youth. Sang Hwang (Phellinus linteus) was believed to be the one.  

In the 16th century pharmacopoeia: Pen Tsao Kang Mu, which contains hundreds of medicines the Chinese have used for thousand years, compiler Le Shih – Chen described the uses of Sang Hwang.  It positively affected the life energy or qi of the heart, repairing the chest area and benefiting those with a knotted and right chest.  He wrote that it also increased intellectual capacity and banished forgetfulness.  Taken over a long period of time, ability of the body would not cease and the years would be lengthened to those of the immortal fairies.

In China, the medical literature such as Shin-nou-nonzokyo (Imperial Medicine Handbook), Honzo-komoku (Medicine handbook), Chuusaku-daijitenn (Great dictionary of Chinese Medicines), Chuugoku-yakuyo-shinnkinn (Chinese medical Fungi), and Toyoiguku-daijitenn (Great Dictionary, 1967) describe the efficacy of  palsy, gonorrhea, and abdominal pain, and effective for helping urination disorder, stomach problems, hematuria, gripes, penis ache, prolapsus ani, melena, over-work, mense disorder, vitiated blood, lymphatic tumor, metrorrhagia, nosebleeds, facial and diarrhea.  And in traditional Oriental applications, Sang Hwang is also used to treat insomnia, gastric ulcers, neurasthenia, arthritis, nephritis, asthma, bronchitis, hypertension and poisoning.  It is also being used in treating neuromuscular disorders, stress, induce tension, myasthenia gravis and muscular dystrophy – all with varying degrees of success.  Presently, Sang Hwang has various applications including lowering or raising blood pressure, stimulating liver actions, blood cleansing, and enhancement of the immune system and the lessening of nervous tension, and acting as an adaptogen in helping the body fight the effects of stress.  It is also being recognized for its adjunct use as an immune system stimulator when cancer therapy is being used. The use of Sang Hwang as a cancer treatment in the Orient is centuries old.  In following the concept of qi tonics, Sang Hwang is used to strengthen the body’s resistance to outside forces. When people continue to take the formulation medicine after boiling it for a long time, it works as a “miracle medicine”, refreshing the human body, relieving ailments, and promoting longevity.

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