The popular belief is that in order to provide the body with enough vitamins and minerals, a diet of a real rich variety of vegetables and fruits is necessary - the more colors, the better. Indeed, in many cases where food is lacking in color, essential ingredients are also missing. This philosophy, however, is pushing the white mushrooms into a deep shadow, as we know, completely wrong.
The benefits of including mushrooms in daily diet
It has long been known that eating fruits and vegetables lowers the risk of many lifestyle diseases. Countless researches show that increasing consumption of naturally grown foods, such as mushrooms, significantly reduces obesity rates, overall human mortality, and the risk of developing diabetes and heart disease.
Mushrooms contain a high amount of antioxidants, like carrots, tomatoes, green and red peppers, pumpkin, green peas and courgettes. They also contain selenium. Selenium is a mineral that is not present in many vegetables and fruits, but we can find it in mushrooms. It plays an important role in the functioning of liver enzymes and supports the detoxification of the body from carcinogenic compounds. Additionally, selenium fights inflammation and slows down the growth rate of cancer.
It has also been shown that vitamin D contained in mushrooms contributes to the inhibition of the development of carcinogenic cells by regulating their growth cycle. Another important substance is folic acid. It is needed for the synthesis or repair of DNA, which prevents the formation of carcinogenic cells by mutations in the DNA strand.
Studies have shown that type 1 diabetics who eat a high-protein diet have lower blood glucose levels, and type 2 diabetics have improved blood sugar, lipids and insulin levels.
Fiber, potassium and vitamin C contribute to the proper functioning of the circulatory system. Potassium and sodium work together to regulate blood pressure. Consuming mushrooms, which are high in potassium and low in sodium, help lower blood pressure and reduce the risk of high blood pressure and cardiovascular diseases. Additionally, a dose of 3 grams of beta-glucans a day can lower cholesterol to up to 5%.
Research also confirms that selenium has a positive effect on the body's immune response in the event of an infection by stimulating the production of T lymphocytes. The beta-glucan fibers found in mushroom cell walls stimulate the immune system to fight cancer cells and prevent the formation of tumors.
Weight and satiety control
Fiber plays an important role in controlling the weight of the body by acting as a "bulking agent" in the digestive system. Mushrooms contain two types of fiber in their cell walls: beta-glucans and chitin, which increase the feeling of satiety and reduce the appetite, thanks to which the state of fullness lasts longer. This is a simple way to lower your overall calorie intake.