Top Health Benefits of Mushroom
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  • Types of Mushrooms
Top Health Benefits of Mushroom

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Top Health Benefits Of Mushroom

There are various advantages of mushrooms and adding them to your diet will enhance your overall health and fitness. However, despite the increasing popularity of mushrooms in the last few years, it is still not a widely used ingredient in Indian cuisine. As a mushroom is a fungus, it is not considered a proper vegetable. Mushrooms are native to North America and Europe known for their chewy and meaty texture and delicate taste. While the world has accepted mushrooms for their vast qualities, Indians are still familiarising themselves with the vegetable.

There are many ancient tales related to the advantages of mushrooms such as Greeks considering mushrooms to be a source of great strength for warriors, while China used it for medicinal purposes. Countries like Japan have also approved a mushroom-based drug for curing cancer. In this article, we explore the different kinds of mushrooms, the advantages provided by these unique edible fungi, and their nutritional content.

Types of Mushrooms

There is a wide variety of mushrooms across the globe but very few of them are used for cooking or medicinal purposes. Being an edible fungus it is packed with antioxidants and other nutrients that contribute to overall health. According to scientific research, there are thousands of mushroom varieties but only a dozen of them can be consumed.  Some mushrooms have a psychedelic effect on the human mind and may even cause hallucinations. It is best to consume the mushrooms available in the supermarket unless you are an expert of mushrooms. The most common types of mushrooms consumed are:

  • Button Mushrooms
  • Shiitake Mushrooms
  • Portobello Mushrooms
  • Oyster Mushrooms
  • Maitake Mushrooms

Nutritional Value Of Mushrooms

There are various nutrients and antioxidants found in mushrooms that are beneficial for your overall health and development. Mushrooms are less in carbs, and fat but are high in essential vitamins like:

  • Vitamin B6
  • Riboflavin
  • Niacin
  • Pantothenic Acid
  • Potassium
  • Selenium
  • Zinc
  • Vitamin D

Health Benefits of Mushroom

Let us dive into the exciting world of the health benefits offered by mushrooms in the section below:

  • Helps You Boost Immune System

    One of the most essential advantages of mushrooms is the enhancement of the immune system. A weak immune system may lead to long-term inflammation (swelling) and oxidative damage of the cells. Consuming mushrooms on a regular basis offers you antioxidants that will help your immune system fight external allergens and chronic illnesses.
  • Keep Your Blood Pressure Levels in Control

    The nutritional value of mushrooms includes potassium, known to decrease the negative impact of sodium in your body. Potassium-rich mushrooms are also known to decrease the pressure created in the blood vessels helping individuals to reduce overall blood pressure levels. Additionally, adding them to recipes that include ingredients with high salt content will help you decrease the overall sodium levels from your meal.
  • Helps Manage Cholesterol

    One of the many advantages of eating mushrooms is that it has a rich meaty texture and is a great substitute for red meat without adding to the calories, fat, and cholesterol not making it stressful for your heart. Certain research studies have shown that shiitake mushrooms specifically are helpful in maintaining lower cholesterol levels.
  • Promotes Brain Health

    Mushrooms are rich in antioxidants vitamins and minerals which are essential for holistic brain health. According to certain studies, individuals who consumed mushrooms more often were at a 50% lower risk of developing Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI) proving that mushrooms have a direct correlation with brain health.
  • A Rich Source of Vitamin D

    Ever since we were kids, we have heard the importance of vitamin D for stronger bones and teeth. It also helps you absorb the calcium present in various food sources. Many people rely on milk, eggs, or sunshine to attain this vitamin and are neglecting mushrooms which are indeed a rich source of Vitamin D. There are certain kinds of mushrooms present in nature like button mushrooms, portabella, and cremini mushrooms that provide the most vitamin D when exposed to sunlight.
  • Maintains Gut Health

    Your gut is a microbiome and includes many healthy bacteria that are directly associated with your mood, hormones, and other ailments in your body. It is extremely important to keep your gut healthy as it is the root cause of all ailments. Consuming mushrooms on a regular basis will help your gut produce healthy bacteria.

How To Include Mushrooms In Your Diet?

There are multiple ways through which you can include mushrooms in your diet. It can be included in multiple recipes according to your liking. To avail benefits of mushrooms you can sautee them in a pan, boil them, and add them to a salad. Or simply just slice them and add them as a pizza topping.  Mushrooms can be consumed with your favorite dishes like pasta, pizzas, subs, sandwiches, burgers, salads, and more. It is a versatile ingredient that can be added to various dishes and enjoyed in different ways.

Wrapping It Up...

Many times mushrooms are overlooked due to their lack of color or unpleasant looks and also because they are fungus. However, over the years cuisines all across the globe have accepted, utilized, and appreciated mushrooms in various recipes. There are some variants of mushrooms that are considered to be luxury such as enoki mushrooms, Kalahari Truffles, and oyster mushrooms costing as high as INR 1,500 per kilogram. A food source that is packed with various nutrients like Vitamin D, Riboflavin, Selenium, Vitamin B6, and more that are essential to help you maintain overall health and fitness for your brain, heart, and gut.

Top Health Benefits Of Mushroom: FAQs

1. What are the various health benefits of mushrooms?

The various advantages of mushrooms include reduced risk of cancer, healthy gut, improved brain health, reduced blood pressure, stronger immune system, lesser chances of developing cognitive illnesses like Alzheimer's and dementia, and more. Mushrooms possess a long list of qualities that are beneficial to the overall health of an individual.

2. What is the nutritional value of mushrooms?

The nutritional value of mushrooms include:

  • Vitamin D
  • Vitamin B6
  • Selenium
  • Riboflavin
  • Niacin
  • Pantothenic Acid and more

3. Can I eat mushrooms every day?

Yes, like any other vegetable that is necessary to maintain a healthy diet mushrooms can be consumed on a daily basis. However, many individuals are allergic to mushrooms and should not consume them in order to avoid potential trips to the emergency ward. It is best to consult a doctor before making any major dietary changes in order to avail the maximum health benefits.

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Naval Goel

Reviewed By: Naval Goel

Naval Goel is the CEO & founder of Naval has an expertise in the insurance sector and has professional experience of more than a decade in the Industry and has worked in companies like AIG, New York doing valuation of insurance subsidiaries. He is also an Associate Member of the Indian Institute of Insurance, Pune. He has been authorized by IRDAI to act as a Principal Officer of Insurance Web Aggregator.