Mushroom Mania

October, National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, is the perfect time to highlight the health benefits of the mighty mushroom. Used for centuries for their medicinal properties, this fungi is really the complete nutritional package: low in calories, sodium, and fat, and loaded with a stellar cast of health promoting vitamins and minerals which help may prevent cancer, cardiovascular disease, and infection. Check out this nutritional line-up:

B vitamins (B6, riboflavin, niacin) which help manage depression and migraines, and promote heart health Ergosterol, a Vitamin D precursor that promotes bone health

Selenium, an antioxidant mineral which may protect against cancer and macular degeneration

CLA, or conjugated linoleic acid, which shows promise in preventing estrogen-sensitive breast cancers

Potassium, a mineral which helps lower elevated blood pressure and reduce risk of stroke

In addition, shiitake mushrooms, a staple of ancient Chinese medicine, contains:

Eritadenine, which promotes cholesterol excretion to decrease cholesterol

Lentinan, a beta glucan compound being studied for its immune enhancing properties

Lentinula edodes mycelium (LEM), compounds believed to prevent cancer, cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure, infection, and liver disease

Thioproline, which may block the formation of cancer-causing nitrogen compounds in the body

Check out Feed Your Goddess to learn about cooking with mushrooms

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