10 Mushroom Facts and Health Benefits

Mushrooms are tasty and filled with nutrients that are good for our body. It is also ideal for those that wish to lose weight, since there are only a hundred calories for every ounce of mushroom. Mushroom is a lean protein that helps in developing the body’s muscles, while at the same time helping the body burn fat, as well as process fiber and protein. Below are some facts about mushrooms.

  1. Mushrooms contain Vitamins B6, B12 and C, which all do an amazing job of strengthening the immune system. These vitamins also aid in removing toxins that can negatively affect the immune system, and a body that is healthy is more likely to efficiently burn fat, compared to one that is ‘busy’ in attempting to heal itself.
  2. Eating mushrooms also helps with bad cholesterol, since mushrooms are high in fiber and low in carbs. Mushrooms are also ideal for diabetics, since the fungi do not contain a lot of carbs.
  3. About 700 mushroom species are used for medicine, while 3,000 types can be eaten; a few varieties of mushroom are poisonous.
  4. In Ancient Egypt, mushroom was a delicacy; in Greece, mushrooms were acknowledged as a potent source of strength. In Ancient Rome, mushrooms were considered to be heaven-sent, and were consumed only during special occasions; in China, mushroom is used for medicinal and health purposes.
  5. Mushrooms are used in plenty of Chinese recipes for soup, as well as salads, dim sum, appetizers, stews and dishes such as Chop Suey. Mushrooms are also used for sandwiches and salads. Mushrooms differ in texture and flavor, and are known to be more flavorful when cooked. However, these fungi are able to retain their texture, regardless of how they are cooked. In Western nations, mushrooms are used in energy drinks and neutraceutical products.
  6. Mushrooms are mostly made out of water (80-90%), making them perfect for individuals that wish to lose some weight. They also do not contain a lot of fat or sodium, and a small percentage of their weight (when dry) comes from fiber.
  7.  If you need more potassium in your diet, make mushrooms a part of your regular diet; a single portabella mushroom is a better source of potassium, compared to orange juice or a banana. This mineral will also help decrease chances of getting a stroke, while at the same time regulating high blood pressure. Likewise, mushrooms are a great source of copper (a mineral that protects the heart).
  8. Selenium, riboflavin and niacin are also found in mushrooms. Selenium and vitamin E work together to protect cells from damage, and selenium has been known to lower the chances of getting prostate cancer.
  9. White button mushrooms (Agaricus bisporus) make up the majority of mushrooms consumed in the US. Next in line are Portabella and brown mushrooms, or Crimini.
  10. White, brown and portabella mushrooms contain components (5-alpha-reductase and aromatase) that are known to lower the risk for prostate and breast cancer.

The health benefits of mushroom are many, and studies have proven mushroom’s effectiveness in combatting an array of diseases including influenza, the common cold, infection, and even tumors. Consider incorporating mushroom into your daily diet, to enjoy its many benefits. Sautee some with a bit of butter, garlic and onions, and eat this with your favorite steak or fish. You could also mix some mushrooms into your pasta sauce, make mushroom omelet, or add some raw porcini mushrooms to your salad.

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