What do we know about the humble mushroom? Well they have been enjoyed for thousands of years; they are rich in vitamins and minerals, rich in high quality protein and are low in fat. They have been used in medicines for ages. In short mushrooms have been around seemingly forever.
But in recent times studies have shown that certain mushrooms have properties which may well help our body to build a stronger immune system and thus be better able to fight cancer. The mushrooms mentioned are maitake, shiitake, reishi, Coriolus Versicolor and Agaricus blazeir Murill. Your greengrocer will be able to help you find these different types of mushroom. It’s the powerful compounds found in these mushrooms which help us in fighting cancer. Mushrooms contain the protein lectin which prevents cancerous cells from reproducing.
It’s interesting that modern scientists have studied mushrooms and concluded they have cancer inhibiting qualities. It’s interesting because mushrooms have formed an important part in medicine and healing for thousands of years. In ancient and modern Eastern medicine the Shiitake, mushroom distillate Reishi and Maitake mushrooms are used for healing. Note that today’s scientists put these very same three mushrooms in the list of those which have anti-cancer qualities.
And it’s not just cancer which the mushroom helps fight. The common white button mushrooms contain phytochemicals which are believed to help protect us against breast and prostate cancer. And this same simple mushroom also contains selenium which studies show helps reduce the risk for colon, lung, stomach and prostate cancer. It’s a tiny plant but it packs a powerful punch in the fight against cancer.
Some of the statistics which come from scientific studies are quite amazing. A group of 2000 women in China were surveyed and had tabs kept on them over a period of time. Those women who regularly ate fresh or dried mushrooms were less likely to have breast cancer than those women who didn’t eat mushrooms. Those women who ate 10 grams or more of mushrooms every day were 64% less likely to have breast cancer than women who didn’t eat mushrooms. Even allowing for the percentage difference on surveys, that figure is remarkable.
Those women who ate 4 grams of mushrooms daily were 47% less likely to develop breast cancer than those women who did not eat mushrooms. This too is remarkable. 47%, if you needed reminding, is almost a half. We’re not talking about a small percentage here of say 5 or 10%. These are massive changes in the likelihood of contracting breast cancer. And all thanks to the humble mushroom.
Again let’s go back to ancient medicine. The ingredient Cordycepin has recently been the basis of a new cancer drug. It comes from a wild mushroom and was used for medicinal purposes thousands of years ago. It now seems that modern science is using ancient science to create modern day cancer drugs. But remember that the mushroom, eaten regularly, has always been a boon for your health in fighting cancer