Mushrooms are a favorite among many people. This fungus is readily available and has been grown for centuries. Mushrooms are fungi that grow in various shapes and sizes.
They are a good source of antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals that shield our bodies from harmful infections. Mushrooms offer numerous health benefits that help boost immunity and shield our bodies from other diseases.
As the world is going through a pandemic, people are looking for various natural ways to keep themselves healthy. Having mushrooms is an easy way to boost your immunity and overall health. They are available in the form of supplements, protein powder, and tea.
People use mushrooms in various dishes, cooked with onions, artichokes, and other spices, and are enjoyed all around the world. You can add it as a topping on your pizza or omelet or even in soup. People love the earthy flavor it adds to the food items.
Let’s have a look at the top six health benefits of mushrooms.
1. Promotes Sleep
Tossing and turning at night, and going through Netflix, affects our sleep cycle. We wake up grumpy, feeling lethargic, and have mood swings. As per studies, scientists recommend having at least 6 to 8 hours of sleep. Inadequate sleep can lead to many health problems an increase in weight gain to weak immune systems.
Lack of sleep can also create memory issues that will negatively affect your power to remember things, focus, and problem-solving skills. Being drowsy is one reason for an increased rate of accidents leading to injuries and even death. Making mushrooms a part of the diet can be an excellent method of calming your senses and inducing sleep.
Reishi, a type of mushroom, can be beneficial in having a natural sleep cycle. It promotes healthy endocrine functionality in the body by regulating melatonin and cortisol levels. The triterpenes in Reishi mushroom tone the nervous system to relax your body, supporting a deep sleep cycle. The best way to consume reishi mushrooms is by mixing them with coffee or a hot cup of chocolate.
Gut issues are another reason for insomnia. Mushrooms contain beta-glucans that act as a prebiotic supporting healthy gut health. Lion’s Mane mushrooms help control enteric nervous system functioning and digestive motility. It also encourages the production of 95% mood-regulating serotonin hormones.
An increase in serotonin levels helps regulate anxiety and depression levels, which assists in having a peaceful sleep at night. Thus, mushrooms in the diet can help relax the mind and body, promoting a healthy good night’s sleep.
2. Enhance heart health
Heart diseases happen due to unhealthy lifestyle routines. Stress, eating oily food, working late hours, a sedentary lifestyle, smoking, and obesity contribute to cardiovascular diseases. Heart disease symptoms include conditions like heart attack, stroke, chest pain, slow heartbeat, and dizziness. An increase in cholesterol levels is also another reason for the rise in the risk of heart disease. It creates plaque in the blood vessels that affect the flow of blood and thus causes a heart attack.
Mushrooms can be beneficial in reducing the risk of cardiovascular diseases. It contains components that reduce the LDL levels in the blood and prevent cholesterol assimilation in the body. Scientists have found that mushrooms contain a cholesterol-lowering compound called Eritadenine, which helps absorb extra cholesterol from the body.
According to reports, shiitake mushrooms contain phytonutrients that can inhibit the accumulation of plaque. This way, mushrooms can help maintain healthy blood pressure. They are an excellent replacement for red meat and add a smoky flavor to the dishes.
3. Prevents Memory Depreciation
Our cognitive skills deteriorate with age. Alcoholism, smoking, hypothyroidism, sleep deprivation, and vitamin B 12 deficiency can lead to memory depreciation, loss of visual memory, and reduced focus. It happens due to inflammation that harms the brain’s cells, causing neurodegenerative diseases. The growing age makes it difficult for the brain to create neural connections. Mushrooms can help in boosting mental strength and have brain-protective properties.
Lion’s Mane is a type of mushroom that acts as an excellent mental booster. The antioxidants in this mushroom help boost the immune system which heightens memory. Lion’s Mane also supports the production of bioprotein and myelin which is crucial for brain development. Changes in the bioprotein and myelin levels can provoke neurological diseases like epilepsy. A PubMed study suggests that consuming a cup of cooked mushrooms once every week can reduce the chances of declining memory and cognition.
4. Supports weight loss
Obesity is one of the biggest health concerns globally. Overeating junk foods, processed foods, overeating, using certain medications, and sometimes genetics are the common reasons for obesity.
Weight gain can cause serious health issues like hypothyroidism, irregular menstrual cycle, diabetes, and a higher risk of a heart attack. Even though people cannot control their body functioning, they can manage their weight by deciding what they feed their bodies. Replacing a higher-calorie meal with a low-calorie meal can be an effective weight-loss technique.
Famous artists like Katy Perry follow an M-plan diet: they substitute one meal of the day with a mushroom dish. The reason is, mushrooms are low in calories and carbohydrates but rich in fiber, potassium, and other B vitamins. They are easy to digest, and you don’t have to keep an eye on the portion size. You can also substitute some meat portions with mushrooms.
Studies reveal that people who substituted meat with fungi for a year showed a significant reduction in weight. Their waist circumference was reduced as compared to people who were on a regular meat diet.
Meaty diets mostly bring with them high cholesterol, hormones, and antibiotics, which is why people on the mushroom diet had regulated LDL and stress levels. These low-calorie fungi can satisfy your hunger without increasing weight. Following a consistent diet with mushrooms can aid in managing a healthy weight for longer.
5. the Rich source of Vitamin D
Vitamin D deficiency happens due to poor exposure to sunlight and eating a low vitamin D diet. Certain diseases like gastrointestinal disorders, liver diseases, and renal diseases can also alter the body’s vitamin D levels.
Vitamin D insufficiency can lead to slow calcium and phosphorus absorption, which causes low bone density, bone loss, and higher chances of fractures. Low levels of vitamin D in the blood can also create multiple sclerosis, osteoporosis, and autism. To avoid these health issues, you can take vitamin D supplements along with taking foods rich in vitamin D. Mushrooms are one such food item that is rich in vitamin D.
Like how humans absorb vitamin D from sunlight, mushrooms can also increase D levels when exposed to ultraviolet rays. The ergosterol in mushrooms transforms into vitamin D when exhibited to light. According to reports, vitamin D-enhanced mushrooms are the only non-animal products rich in vitamin D. Thus, they can be a prime source of vitamin D for everyone. You can try mushroom recipes and start to have a vitamin D-rich diet.
The suggested dietary dosage of Vitamin D for young adults is 600 international units (IU) per day and 800 IU for older adults. Consuming approximately 80 grams of mushrooms can fulfill the RDA for adults. It will keep the bones healthy and reduce the chances of having fractures. If you cannot find vitamin-D-enriched mushrooms in your country, you can make your vitamin-D mushrooms. Place the mushrooms under direct sunlight for a day, and you will get a decent amount of vitamin-D-enriched mushrooms the next day.
6. Reduce Fatigue and Boost Energy
Stress and anxiety have become a part of our daily life. It impacts our sleep and makes us feel low in energy, and lethargic. It affects our mood, work, and entire day. Low energy and fatigue is also a sign of weak immunity. Mushrooms can help in increasing immunity and thereby boosting energy levels.
Cordyceps, a variety of mushrooms, remains famous for stimulating energy and libido. It is rich in riboflavin, folate, and riboflavin. Cordyceps help increase the blood flow to the brain and the entire body. It helps absorb more oxygen and calm the body which alleviates stress and anxiety. Fitness enthusiasts and athletes can include mushrooms in their diet to boost energy and reduce fatigue.
Mushrooms are versatile and healthy food items that can be easily incorporated into various food items. Most edible forms of fungi are rich in antioxidants, beta-glucan, B vitamins, and copper.
They have immune-boosting powers and other beneficial properties that help enhance our lifestyle. One can experiment with the fantastic mushrooms and pair them with tons of ingredients. Consume it in dried form or toss them in your salad, or roast them, mushrooms are an absolute savor.