For hundreds of years, shiitake mushrooms (Lenticus edodes) have been a popular food in Asia. They are prized for their rich, savory taste and diverse health benefits.
They are the second most popular and the third most widely cultivated edible mushroom in the world. Shiitake mushrooms are also known as Champignon Noir, Champignon Parfumé, Champignon Shiitake, Champignons Shiitake, Forest Mushroom, Hongos Shiitake, Hua Gu.
Shiitake mushrooms are a fungus that grows naturally on decaying hardwood trees. They are widely grown in Japan (around 83%), with the US, Canada, Singapore and China also producing them.
Shiitake mushrooms can be found in most grocery stores either dried or fresh. A variety of Shiitake mushroom supplements, extracts and medicinal powder combinations can be found in health stores or prescribed by complementary health practitioners. They’re packed with B vitamins and phytonutrients that have the power to fight disease and infection. shiitake mushrooms have antiviral, antibacterial and antifungal properties. They also help to control blood sugar levels and reduce inflammation within the body.
Shiitake mushrooms are used for boosting the immune system, HIV/AIDS, lowering blood cholesterol levels, arteriosclerosis, diabetes, eczema, colds and flu, treating prostate or breast cancer, and as an anti-aging agent.
Shiitake mushrooms contain many chemical compounds such as lentinan that protects DNA from oxidative damage Lentinan can help heal chromosome damage caused by anticancer treatments. Eritadenine another promising phytochemical found in shitake mushrooms, may help reduce cholesterol levels and support cardiovascular health
Shiitakes are also unique for a plant because they contain all eight essential amino acids, along with a type of essential fatty acid called linoleic acid, making them a great choice for vegans and vegetarians.
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