The Incredible, Health-Boosting Benefits of Mushrooms
Our second-to-none hormone replacement regimens use modern, cutting-edge, safe, and effective therapies to revitalize your entire hormone systems and restore them to their youthful vigor. We offer Testosterone Replacement Therapy (TRT), Human Growth Hormone (HGH) Replacement Therapy, and Sermorelin protocols.
In addition, we provide comprehensive treatment regimens that cover all aspects of health and longevity: physical fitness, sleep, stress control, and, of course, nutrition. When to eat, what to eat, and what not to eat will change your view on the crucial role that nutrition plays in all aspects of your continued good health.
Our recommendations also include food suggestions often overlooked but can deliver a broad range of health benefits and disease prevention.
And that includes mushrooms.
When the word “superfood” is mentioned, most people think of acai berries, kale, or blueberries. Seldom does the lowly mushroom come to mind. However, there are good reasons to add mushrooms to the superfoods list.
Mushrooms are added to entrees as a flavor-enhancer, and they are the second most popular pizza topping. Often overlooked is the fact that mushrooms deliver a potent nutritional punch.
Mushrooms are an excellent source of protein, B-vitamins, vitamin D, selenium, glutathione, and ergothioneine, fiber, and beta-glucans (sugars found in our cell walls that boost our immune systems). All of these powerhouse nutrients deliver a broad range of benefits such as:
- Lower oxidative stress. The Free Radical Theory of Aging is based on the notion that when cells create energy, they also produce unstable oxygen molecules called free radicals since they have a free electron that makes the molecule unstable. Free radicals then attach to other molecules in the body and destabilize many of the body’s functions, and are instrumental in causing many debilitating diseases. Therefore, any nutrient that contains certain anti-oxidants might have anti-aging potential. As mentioned earlier, mushrooms are jammed-packed with anti-oxidants, with two potent substances: ergothioneine and glutathione, the so-called “master anti-oxidant.” Ergothioneine is produced by fungi and is something that we cannot make on our own; we must obtain it through nutrition. Mushrooms contain many times more ergothioneine than any other food. Ergothioneine declines as we age, so older folks must add mushrooms to the menu.
- Strengthen the immune system. The decline of our immune function due to aging opens the door to a parade of uninvited guests: cancer, leukemia, inflammation, osteoporosis, fatigue, and an inability to ward off illness of all kinds. Reishi mushrooms (Gandoerma lucidum) restore youthful energy and vigor to circulating white blood cells, including Natural Killer (NK) and T cells that resemble hungry sharks on the prowl and are our first line of defense against harmful invaders. Reishi mushrooms also increase and strengthen our B cells, which play a crucial role in battling menacing, disease-bearing intruders. B cells process foreign molecules (antigens) and deliver them to NK and T cells for annihilation.
- Improve memory. Can mushrooms really help preserve your memory? A recent study concluded that a few weekly servings of mushrooms could slash the risk of mild cognitive impairment (MCI) in half! The Diet and Healthy Aging Study (DaHA) conducted in Singapore found that study participants that consumed a mere ½ cup of mushrooms weekly were enough to lower MCI risk. Here is why. Once again, ergothioneine jumps to the head of the line by leading the charge of slowing dementia. Mushrooms are also loaded with other brain-boosters like scabronines, hericenones, dictyophorines, and erinacines that can encourage the formation of nerve growth factors and inhibit the growth of brain destroyers like acetylcholinesterase, tau, and amyloid-beta.
- Inhibit the growth of cancer tumors. Reishi mushrooms have a long tradition of preventing and treating disease in many Asian medical systems. Reishi mushrooms can attack and neutralize cancer cells before they bloom and develop into active cancer tumors. This is accomplished by the mushroom activating NK and T cells due to communication between Reishi polysaccharide molecules with the immune system cells, especially in the spleen and thymus, the homes of combative cancer-killing cells.
- Promote gut health. Studies have shown that the beta-glucans in mushrooms restore and boost healthy gut microbiota. This results from beta-glucans acting as prebiotics, which is a source of nutrition for the “good bacteria” in the gut. This good gut bacteria lowers inflammation, wards off disease, controls appetite and promotes healthy gut lining.
- Ease joint aches and pains. Constant nagging joint pain is a maddening condition that destroys the quality of life for anyone that does not want to move any more than absolutely necessary due to creaky, stiff joints. Here again, mushrooms can come to the rescue due to ergothioneine. As mentioned earlier, ergothioneine is a gift that keeps on giving as it lowers inflammation at the cellular level where the real inflammatory action occurs. As with so many things, as we age, our levels of ergothioneine plummet, and we need to take steps to ensure our supply of this precious substance can do its job. Ergothioneine has shown the ability to seek out your aching joint like a guided missile, and researchers have referred to ergothioneine as a “joint-specific antioxidant.” Also, ergothioneine seems to boost other anti-oxidants. The good news? Cooking or steaming mushrooms does not destroy ergothioneine!
Types of mushrooms
There are thousands of species of mushrooms, and here are a few of the types that have been proven to deliver health benefits:
- Reishi. As mentioned above, reishi mushrooms strengthen our immune systems. Reishi mushrooms also improve liver health by controlling the immune responses that impair the liver’s function. As an added bonus, this magic mushroom acts as an adaptogen that may help normalize levels of specific hormones, which lead to many aspects of continued good health.
- Maitake. In addition to boosting our immune systems, maitake mushrooms protect our bodies from infection by inducing the secretion of interferons.
- Chaga. Chaga mushrooms lower levels of tumor necrosis factor, which is an inflammation indicator. Chaga is also a potent anti-oxidant.
- Shitake. This mushroom species is especially adept at protecting us from viruses by decreasing harmful bacteria in the lungs and boosting the secretion of antibodies lower C-reactive protein, a precursor of inflammation.
- White Button. This mushroom species makes up around 90% of all mushrooms consumed in America. A common ingredient on salads and pizzas, white button mushrooms contain more than ½ gram of protein.
- Lion’s Mane. This medicinal mushroom is chock-full of beta-glucan and anti-oxidants that can help to boost mood, lower cholesterol, control anxiety and stress, and sharpen mental performance. As with other mushroom species, lion’s mane may also reduce inflammation.
- Cordyceps. Cordyceps has been referred to as “the energy mushroom” with good reason. Cordyceps can upgrade the body’s production of adenosine triphosphate (ATP) that is the delivery system of energy to the muscles. This allows us to utilize oxygen more efficiently. Also, cordyceps has a high anti-oxidant content that may translate into anti-aging properties.
And don’t forget Mushroom Coffee.
Adding mushrooms to your coffee? Really? Yes! This novel idea was first developed in the 1940s in Finland due to the wartime coffee shortage. Mushroom coffee has been shown to deliver the same benefits as mentioned earlier: mental sharpness, an energy lift, and immune system defense.
Cordyceps mushroom coffee can increase circulation and respiratory health, which may result in a longer-lasting energy lift.
What about the taste? Does mushroom coffee taste like mushrooms? No! Most commercially available brands of mushroom coffee come in a coffee powder mix. The extracts are tepid in flavor and, when mixed with cocoa or coffee, are indistinguishable, so mushroom coffee tastes like regular coffee with less caffeine, the same energy lift, and more health benefits.
What about harvesting wild mushrooms? Is this safe?
Maybe. Going mushroom hunting and gathering can be a fun and fascinating endeavor. But you must use caution and know what you are doing!
It is strongly recommended that if you are going mushroom hunting, please take along someone who has done this before and can steer you away from a severe, even fatal mistake. With nicknames like “The Death Cap” and “The Death Angel,” there are some mushrooms in the wild that do more than make you sick...way more.
Always play it safe and err on the side of caution. If in doubt, don’t pick it and eat it. Study the species of mushrooms from your area, and please take someone with you for guidance.
Mushrooms have been used for centuries due to their proven healing and disease-fighting abilities. The potent combination of beta-glucans, protein, B-vitamins, vitamin D, selenium, glutathione, ergothioneine, and fiber adds up to a low-calorie, tasty food that delivers a powerful nutritional punch.
This is just one example of the nutritional recommendations you will receive at our clinic. We will leave no stone unturned in our mission of providing you with the most complete health package available.
From the latest cutting-edge hormone replacement therapies to fitness routines, stress reduction, better sleep, and the incredibly potent effects of nutrition, it’s all here.
Contact us for a FREE, no-obligation discussion about the miracle of hormone replacement and every other aspect of optimal health.
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