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The mushrooms have been utilized for their health benefits in traditional Asian healing systems for centuries. Shiitake, when translated from Japanese, refers to the shii tree on which these mushrooms originally grew, while také means mushroom. These mushrooms are more expensive than a white button and cremini mushrooms, but their rich, earthy flavor and meaty texture make them worth the extra cost. Black mushrooms are often part of sautés, soups, stuffings, and risottos.
There is an incredible amount of antioxidant compounds in shiitake mushrooms that provide an excellent defense against free radicals and oxidative stress throughout the body. These help in protecting the skin from signs of aging such as wrinkles, while also reducing the appearance of scars and blemishes and promoting a healthy glow to the skin.
A 2014 study in the Nutrients journal says that consuming shiitake mushrooms for combating obesity is a great way to deal attain your weight loss goals.
The nutrient density of shiitake mushrooms, in comparison to their caloric value, makes them an excellent food for people trying to lose weight. In 100 grams of these mushrooms, there are approximately 35 calories, so you can boost your mineral and antioxidant levels without compromising your calorie limits, in addition to stimulating the metabolism and circulation, which can aid in weight loss efforts.
Consuming even small amounts of these mushrooms has been shown to cause a reduction in inflammatory molecules in the bloodstream that blocks the signal to muscles and tissues. This can be of great help for people with arthritis, gout, migraines, inflammatory bowel conditions, and other irritation issues. Research by the CSIRO Food and Nutritional Sciences, Victoria, Australia suggests that shiitake mushrooms have anti-tumor properties that help prevent the development of breast cancer.
B vitamins are often misunderstood and forgotten about but they play a key role in metabolism and energy production. Shiitake mushrooms happen to have high levels of vitamin B2, vitamin B6, pantothenic acid, vitamin B3, and folate, all of which optimize many of the body’s functions. Furthermore, half a cup of shiitake mushrooms provides more than 70% of your daily recommended amount of copper, which is also a crucial element in energy metabolism.
As per a 2011 research study, some of the compounds in shiitake mushrooms can inhibit the production of cholesterol in the liver and can prevent plaque from building up on the walls of arteries and blood vessels. The antioxidant effects of these mushrooms have also been linked to lower overall cholesterol levels and a faster metabolism.
Shiitake mushrooms are extremely versatile and can be added to soups, stews, salads, vegetable dishes, ragouts, meat dishes, omelets, and stir-fries. The flavor is typically described as woody or earthy, which limits their use in culinary applications but savory dishes can often benefit from the mushroom’s hearty texture.
When you buy fresh shiitake mushrooms, the flavor can be quite mild, but drying the mushrooms before cooking with them can enhance the flavor notably, making them an ideal burst of flavor and nutrition in your next stew.
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