Fruiting Body vs Mycelium

Fruiting Body vs Mycelium

When we talk about 'mushrooms' at large, we are generally referring to the fruiting body structure of the fungus. However the mushroom structure isn't a complete picture of fungi! Fungi also have a whole underground body called mycelium. Mycelium is a vast, ecological cellular network that spans nearly every corner of our planet. But, it's invisible to the eye!


  • The below-ground body of the fungus consisting of a network of thin filaments.
  • The body (non-sex cells) of the fungus.

Fruiting Body

  • The visible, above-ground structure of the fungus. A mushroom is an example of a fruiting body.
  • The reproductive structure of the fungus ie. produces spores.
A purple coloured graphic of two mushroom fruiting bodies and their underground network of roots called mycelium on a white background.


Why is this distinction so important?

  1. Scientific studies have shown that most of the beneficial bioactive compounds are found in higher concentrations in the fruiting bodies compared to mycelium.

  2. Often when cultivated in the lab, the mycelium cannot be separated from the grain it's grown on. When mycelium is used in an extraction process, a large portion of the extracted compounds come from the grain substrate and are not bioactive.

It's important to know what your mushroom supplement is made from!


Rainbo's are made from fruiting body with two exceptions. Agarkion is an old growth fungus that cannot be cultivated to fruiting body stage in the lab and so we use lab-cultivated mycelium in our 11:11 tincture as it's also shown to have medicinal properties. Lion's Mane mycelium has been shown to produce medicinal compounds called Erinacines that are not found in the fruiting body and so in an effort to include these compounds in our final extracts we use 10% mycelium when making our Lion's Mane tinctures.

  • Rainbo Forays 2023

    Rainbo Forays 2023

    Foray Schedule 2023 The purpose of our mushroom forays is for mushroom identification, education, connecting to nature and each other! Foray Dates Sunday October 1, 2023 - sign-up link...

    Read now 
  • Benefits of Lion's Mane

    Benefits of Lion's Mane

    Four Benefits of Lion’s Mane Mushroom Lion’s Mane is a mushroom with a long history of use in Asian culture. It’s been used in Traditional Chinese medicine,...

    Read now 
  • a bunch of different coloured mushrooms all piled together with dirt around and on them. Each mushroom is either orange, yellow, grey, beige or purple in colour

    Rainbo Forays 2022

    We're excited to announce our 2022 Rainbo Foray schedule, lead by the Rainbo team and Antonio Cillero Rodrigo from Mushroom Guerrilla. The purpose of the forays will...

    Read now 
  • Rainbo is a B Corp!

    Rainbo is a B Corp!

    A note from our Founder Tonya. We're officially the first mushroom company to become a B Corp! Learn about what this means for us and why...

    Read now 
  • glass of water with a hand dropping in Rainbo's 11:11 tincture into the glass of water so that it can be drank.

    What is a Tincture?

    What is a medicinal mushroom tincture? A mushroom tincture is simply an extract of mushrooms dissolved in alcohol.  An “extract” may be found in liquid...

    Read now 
  • There are 5 individual tinctures in a row with a white background. Each tincture is fully white with text on it and the rainbo logo which is a rainbow. The tinctures in the photo are chaga, cordyceps, 11:11, lion's mane and reishi.

    Which tincture is best for me?

    Confused on how to choose between mushroom tinctures? We hear you! We've been getting this question from many of you. Read on if you're unsure of...

    Read now 
  • Rainbo Forays 2021

    Rainbo Forays 2021

    We're excited to announce our 2022 Rainbo Foray schedule, lead by Tonya Papanikolov, Holliday Cartar and Antonio Cillero Rodrigo from Mushroom Guerrilla. The purpose of the forays...

    Read now