8 Reasons Mushrooms Are Amazing And Gut Friendly

Updated: Apr 6

I'm not sure when my obsession with mushrooms began. I remember growing up we ate the Standard American Diet. Mostly meat, a few vegetables and lots of carbohydrates. My mom would serve vegetables that were mushy and overcooked. I never liked vegetables until many years later when I was an adult and started cooking for myself.


Mushrooms are one of the most perfect vegetables there are. Low in carbohydrates, high in nutrition and easy to find. Plain old white mushrooms may look boring but they are not! We eat mushrooms every week. I love their versatility. I use them as side dishes and as main courses for our meatless dinner nights. They adapt well in any dish and there are so many varieties. Plus, did you know you could drink them for even more nutritional value?


Are mushrooms easy on the stomach? That depends. How is your overall gut health? If you tend to be gassy, bloated, gaining weight, have diarrhea and/or constipation, your gut is telling you that it needs help. The best way to determine if mushrooms (or any food) are giving you stomach problems, is to eat them by themselves to see how your body reacts.


Are mushrooms good for gut health? Yes! Mushrooms are one of the best foods for gut health and have been used for medicinal purposes for thousands of years. Are mushrooms a probiotic? No. Are mushrooms prebiotic? Yes! When a food has prebiotics it means it feeds the good bacteria in our gut, helping to keep our whole body healthy. Mushrooms are rich in carbohydrates which make them great prebiotics to stimulate growth of probiotics in the gut. While I wish I could tell you that one mushroom is the best mushroom for gut health, the fact is all mushrooms are great for the gut!

8 reasons mushrooms are amazing and gut friendly including promotes good sleep and focus

What is the difference between prebiotic and probiotic? Probiotics are good bacteria that live in the gut. They help fight illness, disease, colds, flu's and support a healthy immune system. Did you know 70% of the immune system is in the gut? Keeping gut bacteria healthy and strong is one of the keys to overall good health. Prebiotics, such as the ones found in mushrooms, are the food for probiotics.


How do you know you need gut healthy foods in your routine?


Do you want to stop the...


👉Diarrhea and/or constipation

👉Bloating and gas

👉Weight gain

👉Congestion, coughing, wheezing

👉Brain fog, difficulty recalling words, short term memory issues

👉Headaches and migraines

👉Acne and itchy skin

👉Tired all the time

👉Sensitivity to fragrances and chemicals


If you said yes to just one of the above, your body is telling you something is not right with your gut. Discovering the root cause to be free from pain can be confusing and hard! I am here to help.


I am a Certified Holistic Nutritionist and Board Certified Health Coach obsessed with teaching people just like you how to eliminate your symptoms so you can stop suffering and get back to living!


I offer a FREE 30 minute strategy session where we will talk about your specific symptoms and how the customized Heathers Holistic Health program can help.

two women in a meeting

How would eliminating your symptoms improve your life? You could:


✅Be more present with your children

✅Focus at work

✅Sleep better

✅Have more energy

✅Stop running to the bathroom

✅Lose weight

✅Restore your confidence

✅Be able to cook healthy meals for you and your family

✅Reduce the risk of chronic disease


Heathers Holistic Health program is a science based and personalized to get to the root cause of your unhealthy gut, heal your body and fit your busy lifestyle.


Book your call by clicking here.

It’s very simple. No jumping through hoops and NO PRESSURE.

If we determine it’s not a fit, we’ll go our separate ways for now.

If it is a fit, we can take the next step and get you started on the path to healing.


Below are 8 reasons mushrooms for gut health just make sense!


#1 STIMULATE THE IMMUNE SYSTEM


Mushrooms are rich in polysaccharides, especially beta-glucans, which stimulates the immune system. They do this by inhibiting pathogen growth and supporting the good bacteria in the gut (Source: NIH) About 60 to 70% of our immune system is found in our gut so keeping the good bacteria healthy we have a stronger immune system.


woman smiling because she is not getting sick since she eats mushrooms

#2 GOOD SUPPLY OF PROTEIN


Mushrooms are a good supply of plant based protein and low in calories. This supports a healthy lifestyle by filling you up and helping to keep you fuller longer.


#3 HIGH IN FIBER


Fiber is important for good digestive health. Fiber not only promotes regular and normal bowel movements, it contributes to keeping appetite, blood sugar levels and blood cholesterol under control. A cup of cooked mushrooms can help you get 9 percent to 14 percent of your daily fiber requirements. (Source: Healthy Eating)


Are mushrooms easy on the stomach with so much fiber? That depends. If you are regularly eating at least 5 servings of fruits and vegetables a day, the additional fiber found in mushrooms shouldn't cause any unnecessary gas or bloating. But if you are experiencing any of the symptoms I listed above and follow an eating strategy of limiting fruits and vegetables, then the transition to eating foods with more fiber needs to be slow to avoid any impact on the digestive system.


#4 OFFERS A VARIETY OF HEALTH BENEFITS


Mushrooms improve gut health plus offer significant vital health benefits, including antioxidants, cholesterol-lowering properties, anti-hypertensive, anti-inflammatory, liver protection, as well as anti-diabetic, anti-viral, and anti-microbial properties. (Source: NIH) Antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties help keep our digestive tract healthy.


Chaga mushrooms are one of the best mushrooms for gut health. The gut health benefits in Chaga mushrooms that make them one of the best mushrooms for gut health include being high in antioxidants and helping to prevent stomach ulcers. Use chaga mushrooms for overall wellness and disease prevention. Chaga can be taken as a supplement or found in mushroom drink mixes. (Source: Clean Eating Magazine)

woman cooking healthy food

#5 CALM ANXIETY


Mushrooms are high in pantothenic acid, which is vitamin B5. Pantothenic acid is responsible for preventing fatigue since it supports the function of adrenal glands, particularly in times of stress. (Source: World's Healthiest Foods) One of the root causes of digestive health is stress. By eating and/or drinking mushrooms, stress reduction occurs which promotes a healthy digestive system.


Reishi mushrooms supports the immune and cardiovascular systems and helps manage stress. Use it for overall health or to unwind after a stressful day. Reishi mushrooms are often found in mushroom drink mixes, like this one from Four Sigmatic.

reishi mushroom drink mix to calm anxiety

#6 BOOST MENTAL FOCUS


The medical community widely recognizes the communication pathway from our gut to our brain. There was a 6 year study in Singapore that showed eating more than two portions of cooked mushrooms per week could lead to a 50 percent lower risk of mild cognitive impairment.


The cognitive support appears to be derived from a compound in mushrooms called ergothioneine (ET), which is a unique antioxidant and anti-inflammatory that humans are unable to synthesize on their own. However, it can be obtained from dietary sources, one of the main ones being mushrooms. (Source: Medical News Today)


Lion's Mane is a mushroom that is known to support brain cells and new cell growth in the body and impacts the enteric nervous system. Use it to enhance mental clarity and focus.  Lion's Mane can be bought as a supplement or as part of a mushroom drink. (Source: Clean Eating Magazine)


#7 PROMOTES ENERGY PRODUCTION

Mushrooms are high in B vitamins which are necessary for energy production. They are an excellent source of riboflavin, pantothenic acid, niacin. A very good source of thiamin and B6 and a good source of Folic Acid. All of the B vitamins are necessary for carbohydrate, protein and fat metabolism. (Source: World's Healthiest Foods)


I drink Cordyceps mushrooms 4 days a week. The bag I buy on amazon is USDA organic certified and contains 1000 servings! There is a tiny scoop in the bag and one scoop is all you need. Add some hot water and 1/2 cup of warm nut milk for a tasty start to the day. Since cordyceps promotes energy, I drink it before going to the gym. I've definitely noticed a difference in my endurance since drinking it. Click on the picture to go to the amazon link.

#8 IMPROVES SLEEP


How is food and sleep connected? After we eat food, our blood sugar rises, which prompts the release of insulin in our bodies. When our brains detect the presence of insulin, they then permit an amino acid found in food called tryptophan to enter our brains more easily. This allows serotonin, a neurotransmitter important in brain functions related to sleep and mood, to release and lets us sleep. Mushrooms contain tryptophan, the building block of serotonin, as well as melatonin which help your body regulate your sleep cycle. (Source: One Green Planet)

I hope this post inspires you to eat more mushrooms! They are great for our digestive health, promote healthy sleep, give us energy, helps our brains function better and keeps us calm. The saying is true, food is medicine.


Do you think you will add mushrooms into your routine more often? Let me know by leaving me a comment below.


#guthealth #digestivehealth #mushrooms #healthyeating