Nutrition News About Mushrooms

World-first Literature Review Out of Australia Finds Numerous Health Benefits of Mushrooms

Nutrition Research Australia recently completed a systematic literature review, which included numerous studies from the Mushroom Council, on the varied health benefits of mushrooms in humans. This is the first review from research around the world looking at the 'Agaricus bisporus' mushroom and included screening more than 5,000 studies. Agaricus bisporus mushrooms are the most commonly consumed mushrooms and include white button, brown crimini and portabella varieties.
The review, which included research on mushroom’s key bioactive components and health effects, highlighted the following:
  • Beneficial effects on immune function
  • Improved gut health
  • Reduced inflammation
  • Increased vitamin D levels, specifically with UV-exposed mushrooms
  • Increased fullness and reduced hunger
  • Lowered risk of ovarian cancer and may help to manage prostate cancer
  • Improved cardiometabolic markers
The strengths of this review relate to the broad systematic literature search strategy used to identify the available evidence to answer the research question. This is the first review to systematically synthesise the evidence from published human trials on. Due to the small number of studies examining each health outcome and the lack of replication of reported results, further research is required to confirm these effects on health to enable findings to be adopted into clinical practice. 

“The Mushroom Council has been investing in research in the U.S. for more than a decade, and we were proud to have our research included in this comprehensive literature review,” said Bart Minor, president and CEO of The Mushroom Council. Specific Council peer-reviewed research referenced in the review included studies on vitamin D, ergothioneine, satiety, gastrointestinal health and Type 2 diabetes.

The full literature review can be found here.
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New Online Curriculum for Retail Dietitians Now Available

RDBA Mushroom Resources
The Mushroom Council has partnered with Retail Dietitians Business Alliance (RDBA) to create a mushroom-centric online curriculum specifically for its members. EduTrac® is a RDBA proprietary self-learning educational tool that allows retail dietitians to learn about specific areas in retail at their own pace on their own schedules, while receiving CPEU credits. This latest tool takes a closer look at mushrooms – both nutritionally and practically. From its sustainably grown beginnings to its culinary applications, this curriculum is intended to better prepare retail dietitians for shopper questions, proactive promotions and engaging activities aimed to increase mushroom sales.
Click here to access the Mushroom Mania EduTrac® on the RDBA website.
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Nutrient Spotlight: Vitamin D

Although the majority of Americans consume sufficient amounts of most nutrients, vitamin D is consumed by many individuals in amounts below the Estimated Average Requirement. The 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans identified vitamin D as a nutrient of public health concern because low intakes are associated with health concerns.
Vitamin D has also been getting quite a bit of press recently for its possible role in COVID-19. In a retrospective study of patients tested for COVID-19, researchers at the University of Chicago Medicine found an association between vitamin D deficiency and the likelihood of becoming infected with the coronavirus.

“Vitamin D is important to the function of the immune system and vitamin D supplements have previously been shown to lower the risk of viral respiratory tract infections,” said David Meltzer, Chief of Hospital Medicine at UChicago Medicine and lead author of the study. “Our statistical analysis suggests this may be true for the COVID-19 infection.”

The research team looked at 489 patients at UChicago Medicine whose vitamin D level had been measured within a year before being tested for COVID-19. Patients who had vitamin D deficiency (defined as less than 20 nanograms per milliliter of blood) that was not treated were almost twice as likely to test positive for COVID-19 compared to patients who had sufficient levels of the vitamin.

It’s important to note that the study only found the two conditions were frequently seen together; it does not prove causation. Meltzer and colleagues are currently planning further clinical trials.

Meet Us At FNCE

This year’s Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Food and Nutrition Conference & Expo has gone virtual, and the Mushroom Council will be exhibiting, sharing new research, hosting live cooking demos and giving away fun prizes. Please stop by and chat with us. We’d love to “see” you!

Mushroom Council/FNCE Highlights

  • Live Cooking Demo with Registered Dietitian Pam Smith
    October 18-20 @ 1 p.m. CT
    • Sunday 10/18: Smoky Blended Burgers
    • Monday: 10/19 Pam’s “Possible” Sliders
    • Tuesday 10/20: Ultimate Taco Bar
  • Mushroom Pub Quiz
    October 18 & 19 @ 3:30 p.m. CT
    Wind down with some fun mushroom trivia and win prizes!
  • Poster Session
    October 20 from 12:30 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.
    Nutritional impact of mushrooms in US Diet: A dietary modeling study using NHANES 2011-2016 data. Presented by Dr. Victor L. Fulgoni.

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