Shiitake Mushroom

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Shiitake mushrooms contain many chemical compounds that protect DNA from the action of free radicals, which is why they are so beneficial. The substances in edible mushrooms help reduce cholesterol levels and support cardiovascular health. 

Shiitake contain all eight essential amino acids and a type of essential fatty acid called linoleic acid. Linoleic acid helps with weight loss and building muscle fibre. It also benefits the bone system, improves digestion and reduces the risk of allergies and food sensitivities.

 

Antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties of Shiitake mushrooms


If you're wondering where the antioxidant properties of this type of mushroom come from, you should know that the more unusual nutrients in Shiitake mushrooms are responsible for this.

Numerous studies over the years have linked the broad antioxidant action of free radical scavenging to the high beta-glucan content. In this context, studies have also shown that higher levels of antioxidant activity have also been associated with polysaccharides in mushrooms. These contain disproportionately high amounts of rhamnose and mannose sugars. Along with their glucan content, Shiitake mushrooms are also known for their phenolic antioxidants.

 

Anti-tumour properties


Numerous laboratory studies on cancer cells have shown the ability of Shiitake mushroom extracts to inhibit tumour growth. Researchers have also linked the mushrooms' unique polysaccharide content to these tumour inhibition results.

So far, the potential benefits of this type of mushroom have shown a reduced risk of colon cancer, making this a major area of interest.

 

Shiitake helps regulate blood pressure


Eritadenine, a purine alkaloid in Shiitake mushrooms, has been shown to reduce the activity of an enzyme involved in regulating blood pressure, known as ACE (an angiotensin-converting enzyme).

When ACE is fully active, blood vessels constrict and this contraction gives blood less space to circulate, and as a result, blood pressure rises.

By blocking ACE activity, the eritadenin in Shiitake mushrooms helps to achieve the opposite effect: constriction of blood vessels is prevented, blood vessels maintain a larger diameter, giving more space for blood to pass through and preventing blood pressure from rising.

 

Strengthens immunity


Recent studies on the effects of Shiitake mushrooms on immunity have focused on an immune messenger molecule called interleukin-23 (IL-23).
IL-23 is one of the messenger molecules produced by dendritic cells of the immune system.

A key role of dendritic cells is to support the processing of potentially allergenic or harmful substances and present them to other immune cells for neutralisation.

Studies have shown that taking Shiitake mushroom extract increases IL-23 levels, which improves recognition of potentially allergenic or harmful substances, especially in the lower digestive tract.


 

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