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Meet the functional mushroom All-Star Team

An introduction to Shiitake

The Focused Playmaker

Shiitake functional mushroom for athletes: The Focused Playmaker

Meet Shiitake

An introduction to Shiitake (Lentinula edodes), a functional mushroom: Why athletes should consider using Shiitake, its benefits for performance and recovery, when to take it, and intake guidelines.

Why Shiitake is your new teammate

A little food for thought: Shiitake is a functional mushroom known to be a powerful brain booster for athletes. It's chock full of beta-glucans and minerals, including high concentrations of B vitamins and folate (a.k.a. energy makers) that help to turn food into energy and sharpen mental clarity. Stay active, stay sharp! Interestingly, a long time ago, in feudal Japan, Shiitake mushrooms were revered as symbols of wealth and wellbeing. They were held in such high regard that they were used as a form of currency, with villagers paying their taxes and rent in Shiitakes.


Makes us think of… Rose Lavelle

When professional soccer player Rose Lavelle is in the U.S. national team lineup, the whole team just gels. She’s the engine of the team, one of the key orchestrators of the team’s unmatched and enduring success. It’s her playmaking abilities that sets her apart — marked by exceptional vision on the field, the capacity to make quick, strategic decisions, and ability to sustain high levels of performance throughout long, grueling tournaments. When we think about Shiitake, we think of exactly this sort of playmaking ability, and how Lavelle embodies the cognitive and energy-boosting benefits associated with Shiitake mushrooms.


Benefits of Shiitake for Athletes

Brain Game

Shiitake mushrooms are brimming with compounds that work to improve overall cognitive function, helping athletes anticipate plays and strategize with the clarity and focus of a national team midfielder.

Energize Like a Champ

Shiitakes are a source of sustained energy that doesn't crash and burn, helping convert the food athletes eat more efficiently into usable energy. This in turn helps keep energy levels on point, so athletes can perform when they need to.


When to take Shiitake functional mushrooms

Times when athletes can consider using Shiitake to help with performance:

  • Daily, in the morning: Use Shiitake as a part of a daily morning routine. Consistency is key. Taking Poria every day can better help build and maintain higher levels of focus and energy.
  • Pre-workout: When taken 30-60 minutes prior to a workout, Shiitake can be helpful for athletes who want to feel more focused and energized during that workout.
  • On the go: When on the go, Shiitake can offer a sustained release of energy, which helps keep athletes energized through training or in between meals.

How much should I take?

Here are rough intake guidelines for functional mushrooms: Each athlete has different needs, of course. And, there is no official regulatory agency that has determined any sort of recommended daily dosage. Based on our own experience, however, reading all the research and consulting with the professional trainers, nutritionists, and athletes that we know, we have a solid point of view on it. Please use it as an input, and also work with a professional, if you can, to figure out what works best for you.

A meaningful amount

An estimated ~300 mg – 1,000 mg per functional mushroom per day.

How much is enough functional mushrooms? For us, depending on the source of the mushrooms and quality of the extraction and production methods used, a meaningful amount of functional mushrooms is at least 300 mg of one functional mushroom on any given day.

Enough per day

At least 2,000 mg total intake of functional mushrooms daily.

We suggest getting at least 2,000 mg of functional mushrooms daily — in whatever combination of types and formats of mushrooms that makes sense to you. You know your sport, abilities, routines, and goals better than anyone else.

For example, this could mean taking 1,000 mg of two different mushroom tinctures as a part of your daily routine. Or it could mean eating a single bar containing 500 mg of five different mushrooms.

In a regular routine

For best results, use functional mushrooms consistently over time.

While many people feel effects from functional mushrooms right away, the most significant and lasting benefits come with consistent use over time. Regular intake allows the body to accumulate and use the active compounds more effectively, leading to sustained improvements in performance and recovery. Consistent use also helps in reducing inflammation and maintaining the body’s balance.

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