Why Mushrooms Might Be The Ultimate Superfood [Infographic]

February 11 2013 | Body System Health | Circulatory System | Immune Health

For thousands of years, people have been using various types of mushrooms for a range of health benefits. Mushrooms abosorb vitamins, minerals and any nutrient from plants, soil, and wherever they grow. On trees, they often soak up nutrients that have been building for decades, creating powerhouse supplements. Check out our most recent graphic showing some of the benefits of one of nature's true superfoods. Click the image to make it bigger.

You can find mushrooms in the following Nature's Sunshine Supplements: Immune StimulatorCollustrum with Immune Factors and Cordyceps.

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The Fungi Your Immune System Has Been Waiting For

  • Did you know humans have more in common with fungi than any other kingdom?  We share the same pathogens, meaning bacteria and viruses. 
  • Chinese medicine has used mushrooms for over 1,000 years.
  • 50 years of research has yielded very positive results, particularly for immune health. 

Why Your Immune System Loves Mushrooms

  • Polysaccharides, enzymes, proteins and antioxidants! 
  • Several prominent polysaccharides, including beta-glucans, actually stimulate, or turn on, your body’s natural defense mechanisms. 

Where do mushrooms get these beneficial compounds? 

  • From the mushroom’s host -- usually a tree or other plant that has absorbed and stored healthful nutrients for decades. 
  • Mushrooms embrace and soak up these special nutrients, transforming into a little medicinal powerhouses.

Health benefits of Mushrooms:

  • Increased longevity
  • Improved blood flow
  • Cholesterol and blood sugar normalization
  • Liver protection
  • Kidney support
  • Anti-viral, anti-bacterial, anti-fungal properties
  • Respiratory support
  • Decreased platelet aggregation
  • Reduced risk of heart disease
  • Nerve regeneration
  • Improved skin and hair
  • Increased stamina 

Mushrooms are Packed with These Vitamins and Minerals

  • Niacin
  • Riboflavin
  • Folate
  • Phosphorus
  • Iron 
  • Panthothenic Acid
  • Zinc
  • Potassium
  • Copper
  • Magnesium
  • Vitamin B6
  • Selenium
  • Thiamin

It’s best to blend several mushroom species. A good trio includes: 

Reishi Mushroom

Reishi has been called the “Mushroom of Immortality,” and has been used in Asia for thousands of years.  It has ganoderic acid, which is being used to support cellular abnormalities.

Other Benefits: 

  • Anti-bacterial, anti-viral, and anti-fungal
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Regulation of the immune system
  • Normalization of blood pressure and blood cholesterol levels

Shiitake Mushroom

A key component of Shiitake is Lentinan, which has been found to protect the liver and provide relief for a variety of stomach ailments. Lentinan has also been linked to combating illnesses that attack the immune system. 

Other Benefits:

  • May offer anti-bacterial, anti-viral, and anti-fungal effects
  • Stabilizes blood sugar levels,
  • Reduces platelet aggregation
  • Supports lower cholesterol levels

Cordyceps Mushroom

Called “Caterpillar Fungus,” Cordyceps is unique in that it grows out of an insect host rather than a plant host. This parasitic mushroom has a long and storied history in traditional Chinese and Tibetan medicine. Cordyceps is perhaps best known as the supplement that members of the Chinese women’s track and field team used in training before they broke several records in 1993 and 1994. Team members tested negative for using illegal substances, and their coach revealed that the athletes’ diets were supplemented with a Chinese “caterpillar fungus.”

A natural Chinese supplement, cordyceps benefits several body systems, including the circulatory, immune, respiratory and glandular systems. Cordyceps has properties similar to those of ginseng and is traditionally used to help the body build strength and endurance. In traditional Chinese medicine, cordyceps has been used to benefit the glandular system in both women and men. In addition, cordyceps supports the kidneys, aids the upper respiratory tract and may help the body maintain proper blood viscosity.

Other Benefits: 

  • Increases ATP production, improving strength and endurance
  • Offers anti-aging effects
  • Protects the liver and kidneys,
  • Increases blood flow & normalizes cholesterol levels

Warning!

Mushrooms are extremely hearty organisms that thrive in good, and bad, environments. In ideal conditions, they absorb and concentrate healthful compounds. In poor conditions, they absorb and concentrate unhealthy, harmful, and even deadly substances. Be sure your mushrooms come from a reputable, safely grown source. 

Sources: MedicalMushrooms.net, healing-mushrooms.net and Mercola.com.

 


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