How to eat shittake mushrooms


Scientific name: Lentinula edodes
Superpower: Combats inflammation

Shiitake mushrooms are one of the few medicinal mushrooms that also happen to be delicious. In fact, they’re one of the five most popular mushrooms worldwide! But being tasty isn’t their only superpower. They’ve also been used for their health benefits for hundreds of years in Japan, China and Korea.
Shiitake mushrooms contain lentinan, which has strong anti-inflammatory, antitumor, antiviral, antibacterial and antiparasitic properties. What does all that mean? Well, not only can lentinan help destroy cancer cells, it may also ward off various infections and viruses. An injectable form of shiitake mushrooms is used alongside chemotherapy in China and Japan for the treatment of gastric cancer. Shiitake mushrooms have also proven helpful at lowering bad cholesterol levels.
How to take shiitake mushrooms:
Since shiitake mushrooms are so tasty, you can enjoy them in stir-fries, miso soup, grain-based dishes, casseroles or even curries. Just 5 g of dried shiitakes (about 1 oz fresh or one large mushroom) can lower markers of inflammation in the blood after a single meal! Fun fact: You can purchase dried shiitakes and keep them in the pantry for several months, which makes them a convenient staple. Then, just rehydrate them before adding to cooked dishes!
You can also take shiitake mushrooms as a supplement in pill form. Just be sure to look for organic varieties without added ingredients or gelatin. The only downside to shiitake mushrooms is that they’re rich in purines, meaning that folks who are prone to gout flare-ups may need to limit portion sizes or eat them less frequently.