The Health Benefit of Mushrooms You Never Knew
Mmmmm, mushrooms! These little veggies may not be much to look at, but they are completely full of great stuff for your body. Mushrooms contain some of the most potent natural medicines on the planet. Of the 140,000 species of mushroom-forming fungi, about 100 species of mushrooms are being studied for their health-promoting benefits. Of those hundred, about a half dozen really stand out for their ability to deliver a tremendous boost to your immune system.
It’s important to eat only organically grown mushrooms because they absorb and concentrate whatever they grow in — good OR bad. This is what gives mushrooms their potency. Mushrooms are known to concentrate heavy metals, as well as air and water pollutants, so healthy growing conditions is a critical factor.
As a defense against bacterial invasion, fungi have developed strong antibiotics, which also happen to be effective for us humans. Penicillin, streptomycin, and tetracycline all come from fungal extracts.
The FASEB Journal recently published nine studies on mushrooms that were also presented at Experimental Biology 2013, which detailed a wide variety of health benefits, including:
Weight management: One study, 3 found that substituting red meat with white button mushrooms can help enhance weight loss. Obese participants with a mean age of just over 48 years ate approximately one cup of mushrooms per day in place of meat. The control group ate a standard diet without mushrooms.
At the end of the 12-month trial, the intervention group had lost an average of 3.6 percent of their starting weight, or about seven pounds. They also showed improvements in body composition, such as…