Organic mushroom benefits

Organic mushroom benefits.

Mushrooms are known for their nutritive value as they are a good source of antioxidants, selenium, vitamins like vitamin B, and fiber. They are included in several weight management plans due to their low content of carbohydrates and calories. Mushrooms may also help reduce the risk of metabolic diseases, aid in weight loss, and improve cognitive health.

What are Mushrooms?

Mushrooms are edible fungi with various scientific names; their family name is ‘Agaricus’. They are essentially saprophytes, the organisms (plants without chlorophyll) which thrive by extracting nutrients from dead and decaying plant and animal matter. They vary greatly in their color, texture, shape, and properties.

There are approximately 140,000 species of mushroom-forming fungi in the world. However, scientists are only familiar with about 10 percent, and only 100 species or so are being studied for their potential health benefits and medicinal applications. According to the Mushroom Council, popular edible mushrooms include:

  • Oyster mushrooms
  • White button mushrooms
  • Cremini mushrooms
  • Portobello mushrooms
  • Shiitake mushrooms
  • Maitake mushrooms
  • Enoki

Some mushrooms are used medicinally or steeped to have mushroom coffee or mushroom tea such as reishi, Chaga, and turkey tail mushrooms.

Nutritional Value

Mushrooms are favored in weight loss diets as they are low-calorie and low-carb food. A cup of raw, white button mushrooms contains just 15.4 calories and 2 grams of carbohydrates. , They are also a good source of vitamins and minerals including vitamin C, B-vitamins (niacin, riboflavin, thiamin, folate), vitamin D, selenium, potassium, phosphorus, magnesium, and sodium.

Health Benefits of Mushrooms

Let us look at the important benefits of mushrooms.

1.Rich In Antioxidants

Mushrooms have significant antioxidant properties due to their bioactive compounds, such as polyphenols, polysaccharides, vitamins, carotenoids, and minerals. 

2.Weight Management

Many varieties like portobello have a meaty taste, making them a favored choice with vegetarians and vegans. Their low-calorie, low-carb content also makes them a preferred choice among people who are following the ketogenic diet or the paleo diet. 

3.Improves Cognitive Health

Researchers analyzed data from 663 people aged 60 and above from the Diet and Healthy Aging study and found that people who ate mushrooms more than twice a week had reduced odds of having mild cognitive impairment. Also, an animal model study revealed that a bio compound in mushrooms called ergocalciferol protects the brain from beta-amyloid peptide toxicity. This may help in reducing the risk of Alzheimer’s disease. However, more detailed studies on humans are required to understand its therapeutic potential. 

4.Low-glycemic option for people with diabetes: The low cal and low-carb content makes it a highly recommended food for diabetics.

5.Prebiotic source: In a 2013 study published in the Journal of Nutrition, researchers found that mushrooms increased microbial diversity and helped ease Citrobacter rodentium infection in mice. 

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