Consumption of mushrooms for health, wealth and wellbeing may appear a grand title for the humble earth dwelling fungi, we all know and love? But the lowly mushrooms has reached new heights owing to demand, education and increased production worldwide.
Large warehouse appearing overnight somewhat resembling the natural occurrence of the nocturnal mushroom are producing millions of shrooms. These sterile micro climates re-create the ideal growing conditions for our beloved mushroom and whilst we are sold pictures of field mushrooms populating a perfect pasture or meadow, the reality is in fact completely man made.
All of which means that those delightful white button field mushrooms, carefully packaged and shrink wrapped for our convenience that we happily consume on mass are in fact a product of our commercial environment. Yet surprisingly tasty and nutritious, they often are our first introduction to the World of mushrooms and for those willing to dig a little deeper there is a whole new world of nutritious wild mushrooms to discover.
Mushrooms are a superfood but most people focus on the health benefits of our favourite healthy foods like fruit and vegetables, the mushroom often gets pushed aside. In reality the lowly mushroom can stand it’s own in and nutrient rich competition including blueberries or broccoli.
Packed full with anti-oxidants, vitamins and minerals, mushrooms are a great addition to any diet an excellent source of essential vitamin D. Mushrooms are rich in essential minerals, including copper and selenium and potassium. Macronutrients are calorie-containing nutrients, which include carbohydrates, protein and fat. Mushrooms have a healthy macronutrient composition that’s similar to fresh vegetables.
Mushrooms are naturally low in dietary fat and rich in dietary protein and fiber. According to the USDA Nutrient Database, a single serving of fancy enoki mushrooms contains less than a half a gram of dietary fat and more than 2 grams of dietary fiber. This is important for healthy bowel movements, controlling blood sugar levels and reducing the risk of disease. Similarly, oatmeal, legumes and nuts are low-fat sources of dietary fiber.
Anti-oxidants are nutrients found in plant foods that seek and destroy free radicals deformed molecules that attack and damage healthy tissue. Mushrooms are an excellent source of potent anti-oxidants. Anti-oxidant activity in many species of mushrooms is similar to nutrient-rich vegetables, including bell peppers, broccoli and carrots. Other anti-oxidant-rich foods to consider adding to your diet include black beans, fresh berries and whole grains.
Parts of Eastern Europe for example still holds true to the old average we are what we eat and it is only this understanding of food, climate, lifestyle and natural resources that create harmony in our lives.
While mushrooms are healthy, check with your doctor before including mushrooms into your daily diet. There are dozens of species of edible mushrooms to choose from, including shiitake, oyster, portabello and porcini. Mushrooms can be incorporated into your diet by adding them to soups and salads, grilling them and incorporating them into dinner dishes such as lasagna and bolognese.