Examining the Nutritional Composition, Value and Health Benefit of Mushrooms
Keywords:health benefits, mushrooms, nutritional value
Mushrooms are consumed by humans as comestibles for their nutritional value and they are occasionally consumed for their supposed medicinal value. Mushrooms consumed by those practicing folk medicine are known as medicinal mushrooms (Ejelonu et al., 2014). Apart from their edibility and nutritional value, mushrooms have potential medicinal benefits (Boa, 2004; Chan, 1981). Such use of mushrooms therefore falls into the domain of traditional medicine. Preliminary research has shown some medicinal mushroom isolates to have cardiovascular, anticancer, antiviral, antibacterial, anti-parasitic, anti-inflammatory and anti-diabetic properties (Sullivan et al., 2006; Chang and Miles, 1989). Currently, several extracts (polysaccharides-K, polysaccharide peptide and lentinan) have widespread use in Japan, Korea and China, as potential adjuvants to radiation treatments and chemotherapy (Borchers et al., 2008; Sullivan et al., 2006). This study, however, sought to examine the nutritional composition, value and health benefit of mushrooms. The findings indicated that, mushrooms is rich in cabohydrates, protein, fats and ascorbic acid. The study concluded that mushrooms or extracts from mushrooms could also be used for home-based treatments for certain diseases, even though unconfirmed in mainstream science and medicine, and so are not approved as drugs or medical treatments (Sullivan et al., 2006).
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