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Here’s Why You Should Eat More Mushrooms

Email sent: Oct 28, 2017 10:00 am

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How To Boost Your Immunity With Mushrooms - By Dr. Jeremy Wolf, N.D.

Throughout history, mushrooms were touted for their medicinal benefits and it appears modern research is beginning to align with ancient wisdom. Besides being a culinary treasure, mushrooms are both nutritious and work wonders for the immune system. Their use as a medicine dates back to Hippocrates (known as “the father of medicine”) who claimed mushrooms could stimulate the healing processes for serious chronic illnesses. Mushrooms belong to a unique group of organisms called fungi, and around 140,000 species of fungi are mushroom-forming. 100 of these species are currently being studied, so we’re barely scratching the surface on a whole world of potential health-boosting foods.

Why are mushrooms so nutrient-dense? Beginning as spores, the body of a mushroom is formed by long fibers called hyphae. These hyphae grow out from underground roots called the mycelium. It’s through the mycelium that rich nutrients from the soil & environment get absorbed. As these nutrients are absorbed, mushrooms sprout up from the mycelium to form the usual shapes we’re used to seeing above ground.
 
Health Benefits Of Mushrooms
  1. Packed with protein and fiber

  2. Rich in minerals, vitamins (especially B-Vitamins) and immune-boosting beta-glucans

  3. Naturally low in fat and cholesterol

  4. Helpful with cholesterol regulation

  5. Rich in antioxidants like selenium

  6. Contains both antiviral and antimicrobial compounds

  7. May strengthen the immune system and improve its function

  8. Said to have cancer-preventing properties

  9. May help to increase the beneficial bacteria in our gut and reduce inflammatory species—balancing the gut microbiota

  10. Helpful with weight management
 
Common Species of Health-Boosting Mushrooms

Trametes Veriscolor
(Turkey Tail)

Turkey tail is one of the most studied medicinal mushrooms. Recently, the NIH funded a study on breast cancer and turkey tail mushrooms to see if these mushrooms could up-regulate the immune response after chemotherapy. The study concluded that turkey tail may improve the status in immunity-compromised breast cancer patients following chemo treatment. On top of these benefits, turkey tail may also have antiviral, anti-tumor and anti-inflammatory properties.
Turkey Tail
 
Reishi

Ganoderma Lucidum
(Reishi)

Reishi is one of the most famous medicinal mushrooms. In China, this mushroom is known as the “plant of immortality.” It’s used for many age-related and degenerative conditions such as coronary heart disease, chronic bronchitis, hypertension, cancer and as an immune stimulant. It may also help with common nervous system complaints such as anxiety, insomnia and dizziness.

 

Codyceps Sinensis
(Caterpillar Fungus)

In ancient China, this fungus was used to build stamina and restore vital energy after exhaustion or prolonged illness. It has promising effects on liver and kidney disease and is revered for its adaptogenic properties. Adaptogens help the body cope with stress, fight fatigue and enhance endurance.
Caterpillar Fungus
 
Maitake

Grifola Frondosa
(Maitake)

While more research is needed to validate its role in cancer treatment, extracts of Maitake have been shown to enhance natural immunity. Studies in animals have shown that it may slow the growth of certain tumors. Other common uses for this mushroom include its role in lowering blood sugar levels, making it potentially beneficial for those suffering from type 2 diabetes.
 

Lentinula Edodes
(Shiitake)

This fungus is indigenous to Japan and other Asian countries. There are studies done on two types of extractions from this fungus: lentinan, an active polysaccharide extracted from the fungus and an extract from the mycelium called LEM. Lentinan has shown anti-tumor activity and immune modulating factors.
Shiitake
 
White Button

Agaricus Bisporus
(White Button)

On top of other health benefits, consuming dried white button mushroom extract was found to increase vitamin D levels in the body.
 
What to Know When Choosing A Mushroom Supplement
  1. Supplements come as individual species of mushrooms or in blends. Blends, in some situations, may be more effective than individual supplements since each species has a unique nutrient profile to offer.

  2. Because mushrooms absorb their food completely from their environment, it’s important to look for organically grown mushrooms to limit heavy metals, pesticides and other contaminants.

  3. If you don’t like taking pills, teas are a great, flavorful way to get your dose of medicinal mushrooms.
 
 
Doctor's Picks Doctor's Picks
 
Fungi Perfecti - Host Defense MyCommunity Comprehensive Immune Support - 120 Vegetarian Capsules
Fungi Perfecti
Comprehensive Immune Support -
120 Vegetarian Capsules

✔ Organic & Non-GMO
✔ Contains Mycelium &
Fruit Body
Shop Now
Four Sigmatic - Cordyceps Mushroom Elixir Mix - 20 Packet(s)
Four Sigmatic
Cordyceps Mushroom Elixir Mix -
20 Packet(s)

✔ Paleo &
Vegan-Friendly
✔ 100% Natural
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Dr. Mercola Premium Supplements - Organic Mushroom Complex For Pets - 2.1 oz.
Dr. Mercola Premium Supplements
Organic Mushroom Complex For Pets - 2.1 oz.
✔ USDA Organic
✔ For Your Pets
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Fungi Perfecti - Host Defense Reishi Extract - 1 oz.
Fungi Perfecti
Host Defense Reishi Extract -
1 oz.

✔ USDA Organic
✔ Eco-Friendly
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Doctor's Bio Doctor's Bio
 
Dr. Jeremy Wolf is a Licensed Naturopathic Physician (N.D.). He completed his four-year medical training from the Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine (SCNM) and Health Sciences graduating with high honors. Prior to receiving his Doctorate, Dr. Wolf received his Bachelors in Science with a focus in Biology from Towson University. Dr. Wolf's medical focus is based on Herbal Medicines, Health Supplements, Homeopathy, Pediatrics, Nutrition and Physical Medicine. He has also had extensive training in Therapeutic Nutrition. Dr. Wolf's medical philosophy is based on a healthy balance of diet, exercise and proper nutrition to aid in the reversal of disease and stimulate the body's innate ability to heal itself.
 
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