I love mushrooms. I know they add great flavor and texture to most dishes and soups. What I didn’t know was that mushrooms are nutritional superstars, SUPER-fungi if you will, packed with minerals and cancer fighting properties.
Mushrooms pack a wallop nutritionally and medicinally, as they contain the following:
- Potassium: Lowers blood pressure and reduces stroke risk. One medium Portabella has more potassium than a banana!
- Copper: Protects the heart
- Riboflavin: Helps maintain healthy red blood cells
- Niacin: Promotes healthy skin and helps with digestion and nervous system health
- Vitamin D, Selenium: Protects cells from damage (Selenium is an antioxidant). High selenium levels in men can help prevent prostate cancer
- Ergothioneine: Protects cells (another antioxidant)
- Potassium: Helps maintain normal fluid and mineral balance
- Lentinan:Stimulates the immune system and helps to fight infections like colds and flu. (Shiitake)
As you can see, mushrooms are a nutritional powerhouse. But how do they help to prevent cancer?
Many breast cancer tumors rely on estrogen to grow. Mushrooms contain natural Aromatase inhibitors. These are compounds that can block estrogen production thereby helping to prevent breast cancer. White button, Cremini, and Portobello mushrooms are especially potent for this.
Tumors are fed by blood vessels which enable them to grow. Mushrooms are natural angiogenesis inhibiters which actually prevent the growth and formation of blood vessels thereby stunting the tumor’s growth.
Dr. Joel Fuhrman is a nutrition researcher who specializes in preventing and reversing disease through nutritional and natural methods. He says that eating just one button mushroom a day has been shown to reduce breast cancer risk by 64%. Yes, you read that right! Mushrooms also protect against other types of cancers like stomach, colorectal, and prostate.
If you are like me, you are wondering why you do not eat mushrooms every day! Here is my idea for daily mushroom incorporation:
Every week, sauté a variety of mushrooms (they really cook down so get a lot) and keep them in the refrigerator. Incorporate a half cup of mushrooms into your meal every day.
- Add mushrooms to your eggs in the morning
- Sprinkle mushrooms on your pizza
- Stir mushrooms into your pasta
- Add mushrooms to brown rice or quinoa
- Add mushrooms to stir fry
- Mix the mushrooms with your other veggies
- Just eat the mushrooms!
It is so easy to eat a half cup of mushrooms a day!
Are you going to eat mushrooms regularly?