Sure like the below article says, mushrooms are great for you, however, I know some of you are like me and don't like certain textures when it comes to food - for me it's the texture of mushrooms. So I have started out slowly by using my micro-planer and adding a variety of mushrooms to my soups and omelets, etc. This way the texture isn't a problem, I get extra unami flavor, and my meal is even a bit healthier.

Mushrooms are nutrient rich, low in calories and come in all different shapes and sizes, which is why experts are singing their praises. A good addition to any healthy diet, this food has even been said to have anti-cancer and anti-aging properties.

Most often considered a vegetable, mushrooms actually belong to the fungi group.

Not only are they a good source of vitamin B-12, but they are a rare source of ergosterol (a precursor to vitamin D2) and include antioxidants like ergothioneine and selenium which both have anti-inflammatory effects.

And did you know? Mushrooms even provide a small source of protein.

“Mushrooms should be part of every daily diet,” says Madhu Jain, a clinical dietitian at Advocate Lutheran General Hospital in Park Ridge, Il. “I advise my patients to make a conscious effort to include them in any way they can, whether in omelets, soups, salads or even as a side. Plain and simple – they are good for you.”

Some evidence even suggests mushrooms may reduce the risk of breast cancer, says Jain. Other evidence shows they support and enhance healthy immune and inflammatory responses. “They do this through their interactions with gut microbiota and improved immune cell functionality,” explains Jain.

Another benefit? They’re a great substitute for red meat. “If you’re trying to reduce your red meat intake because of its effect on cardiovascular health, mushrooms are a great substitute without giving up the taste,” Jain says. “There is evidence that due to the unique combination of their texture and taste, they can mimic meat and are well liked by those trying to cut it out.”

“When you reduce inflammation in your body, the effects of aging are limited, too,” says Jain. “The only thing I avoid is eating any mushrooms raw, especially Cremica and Portobello due to naturally occurring carcinogen agaritine. Cooking gets rid of this toxin to the most extent.”

Clearly, a winning choice for this dietitian. But if you’re not a mushroom fan, you can still exhibit healthy dieting habits. Jain’s one healthy diet mantra – “Any time you sit down to eat, ask yourself, ‘Where are my veggies, and where are my fruits?” And don’t forget the power of small steps, she says.

So if you are already a mushroom lover, good for you. I am a bit behind you in this area, but I'm sure that I'll catch up!


From health enews – Advocate Aurora Health By: Jackie Hughes

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