Shiitake mushrooms are an excellent source of some important vitamins and minerals. For starters, they have three B vitamins, B2, B5 and B6, and six important trace minerals: phosphorous, selenium, copper, zinc, potassium, magnesium, and manganese. Selenium is a known cancer-fighting mineral. The mushrooms also contain vitamin D and protein as well as dietary fiber. Finally, they are a great non-meat source of iron, the blood-fortifying element.
In researching the shiitake mushroom, it was found that it helps boost cardiovascular health by preventing too much immune cell binding to the lining of our blood vessels. Because of specific types of protein molecules (ICAM-1, VCAM-1, and E-selectin) in shiitake mushrooms, which have special adhesion characteristics in their molecules, our blood vessels are protected.
Beta-glucan, the soluble fiber in shiitake mushrooms also binds to cholesterol in the gut by forming a gel-like paste, which absorbs it and then expels it from the body. It is through this process that ‘bad’ cholesterol levels can be lowered by eating shiitake.
What’s more, shiitake mushrooms also boost the immune system and add years to our lives by reducing oxidative stress throughout the body due to their high levels of antioxidants.
Finally, the mushrooms farmed organically on forest hardwoods are sustainable and great for the environment, so you can obtain your fill of fungi with absolutely no guilt.
Source: Natural Society