Alternate Names/Related Terms:

  • Lentinus edodes


Shiitake is a mushroom that is often used in cooking. It has been used to help the body fight illness and as an antioxidant to slow damage to cells. Shiitake can be eaten raw or cooked then eaten. It can also be taken as a pill, powder, or extract. Shiitake can also be made into a tea.


There are no advised dosages for shiitake.

What Research Shows

There is not enough data to support that shiitake is helpful in treating health problems. We will review future studies as they are published.

Editorial process and description of evidence categories can be found at EBSCO NAT Editorial Process.

Safety Notes

It is likely safe to take shiitake in small doses for a short time, but belly pain may happen. A1 Skin rash may also happen in some people. A2-A3 Not enough studies have been done to say whether it is safe to take for a long period. It is not known whether it is safe to take by women who are pregnant or breastfeeding.


Talk to your doctor about any supplements or therapy you would like to use. Some can interfere with treatment or make conditions worse.


REFA Safety

REFA1 Levy AM, Kita H, et al. Eosinophilia and gastrointestinal symptoms after ingestion of shiitake mushrooms. J Allergy Clin Immunol. 1998 May;101(5):613-620.

REFA2 Wang AS, Barr KL, et al. Shiitake mushroom-induced flagellate erythema: A striking case and review of the literature. Dermatol Online J. 2013 Apr 15;19(4):5.

REFA3 Chu EY, Anand D, et al. Shiitake dermatitis: a report of 3 cases and review of the literature. Cutis. 2013 Jun;91(6):287-290.

REFA4 Nguyen AH, Gonzaga MI, et al. Clinical features of shiitake dermatitis: a systematic review. Int J Dermatol. 2017 Jun;56(6):610-616.

Revision Information

  • Reviewer: EBSCO NAT Review Board Eric Hurwitz, DC
  • Review Date: 07/2019
  • Update Date: 03/30/2020