Mushrooms are nutritious and have many health benefiting properties.Â Mushrooms have been used as food and medicine in many countries for centuries.
What exactly is a mushroom?
Mushrooms are fungi.Â (Sounds like a joke).Â Fungi are distinct in nature and they are classified separate from plants or animals.Â They are not a fruit, vegetable, grain or animal product. Fungi have their own cellular organization and composition.Â We generally think of them as vegetables but they technically are not.Â Mushrooms grow and can be harvested year-round.
Mushrooms are considered a super food. They are low in calories, fat free, cholesterol free, gluten free and low in sodium.Â Mushrooms have more than 12 vitamins and minerals to help your body function optimally.Â They are a complex carbohydrate.
Mushrooms are a good source of:
- B Vitamins â€“ B vitamins support your nervous system.Â These vitamins provide energy by breaking down proteins, fats and carbohydrates.
- Riboflavin â€“ Riboflaving assists cellular function, energy production and metabolism.
- Niacin â€“ Niacin supports healthy skin, digestion and your nervous system.
- Pantothenic Acid â€“ Pantothenic Acid assists hormone production and your metabolism.
- Lectins â€“ Mushrooms contain proteins called lectins that can bind to abnormal cancer cells and label those cells for destruction by our immune system.
- SeleniumÂ – Mushrooms are a leading source of selenium (more than any other fruit or vegetable) which protects the body’s cells from chronic disease.
- Ergothioneine â€“ Mushrooms are the highest food source of ergothioneine.Â Ergothioneine is a natural antioxidant that protects cells from damage. Â It also has anti-inflammatory properties.Â Anti-oxidants protect cells from free radicals.
- Potassium â€“ Mushrooms contain as much potassium as a tomato.
- Vitamin D â€“ Mushrooms help the body absorb Vitamin D.
There is ongoing research that supports that mushrooms can suppress the growth of breast cancer and prostate cancer cells.Â More research is needed but it looks promising.Â These two cancers are very prolific.
There is also research that shows mushroom consumption can improve immunity (lower risk) for certain chronic disease.
Some Mushroom Varieties:
- Golden Oyster
- White Button
How Do I Get More Mushrooms Into My Diet?
THE ANSWER â€“ THE BLEND
The blend is combining mushrooms with ground meat.Â So any dish where you use ground meat add finely chopped mushrooms to the meat and cook as usual.Â You can use with ground beef, chicken, turkey or pork.Â Season the meat mixture just like you would the meat alone.
Mushrooms have a similar texture to meat and are satisfying to eat.
Consider adding mushrooms to burgers, meatballs, tacos, meatloaf or lasagna.Â The list is endless.
You should wash your mushrooms under running water before preparing or eating.