Enjoyable reality: I’ve an entire basket of mushroom coffees and drinks on my espresso bar. One of many powerhouse mushrooms you’ll discover in there may be maitake.
This humble mushroom can also be referred to as “hen of the woods.” Its overlapping fronds resemble the feathers of a nesting hen, therefore the title. Over the centuries, maitake’s many advantages have sparked the curiosity of researchers and well being lovers alike. Not solely is it a medicinal mushroom, however its scrumptious umami taste makes it a prized culinary ingredient.
What Are Maitake Mushrooms?
The maitake mushroom, often known as Grifola frondosa, is an edible mushroom native to China. It additionally grows within the mountains of northeastern Japan, Europe, North America, and different elements of Asia. Moreover hen of the woods, one other frequent title for this mushroom is “sheep’s head.”
“Maitake” means dancing mushroom in Japanese. The title supposedly comes from folks dancing for pleasure upon discovering it. Folks have identified for hundreds of years how helpful this sort of mushroom is. It’s one of many mushroom varieties thought-about a “medicinal mushroom.” Maitake has an extended historical past of each culinary and medicinal use: “Let meals be thy medication.”
Vitamins in Maitake Mushrooms
Maitake mushrooms are a superb supply of amino acids, B nutritional vitamins, vitamin D, phosphorus, and potassium. Additionally they present dietary fiber to feed helpful intestine micro organism. Their cell partitions are wealthy in anti-inflammatory beta-glucans that assist help the immune system.
Maitake mushrooms are a pure supply of vitamin D, however the quantity can differ resulting from rising circumstances, solar publicity, and maturity. When Maitake mushrooms are uncovered to daylight or ultraviolet (UV) mild throughout their development, they will synthesize vitamin D. It’s sort of like what human pores and skin does when uncovered to daylight. The kind of vitamin D present in fungi is D2 quite than D3.
Maitake mushrooms even have phosphorus. Our physique makes use of this important mineral for many totally different physiological processes. Just a few examples embrace bone well being, vitality metabolism, cell membrane construction, and DNA/RNA synthesis.
Potassium is current in most vegetation and fungi and is essential for the human food plan. This important mineral performs an vital position in sustaining well being, together with fluid steadiness.
Together with sodium and magnesium, potassium is an electrolyte. These components carry an electrical cost and are concerned in hundreds of a number of essential processes. Past its position in fluid steadiness, it helps nerve operate, muscle operate, and coronary heart well being.
Therapeutic Advantages of Maitake Mushrooms
Maitake mushroom has gained consideration for its potential well being advantages.
It has many bioactive compounds, together with polysaccharides, beta-glucans, antioxidants, and different phytonutrients. These compounds seemingly contribute to its medicinal properties, making it a sought-after mushroom.
Medicinal mushrooms are identified for supporting the immune system. Maitake mushrooms aren’t any exception. Like different medicinal mushrooms, Maitake mushrooms comprise beta-glucans. These mushroom-based polysaccharides assist help a wholesome immune response. Polysaccharides normally are complicated carbohydrates made up of smaller sugar molecules. These sugars might help a wide range of processes that make the physique extra resilient.
A 2014 animal research appeared on the immune-enhancing impact of each maitake and shiitake mushrooms. The researchers discovered maitake mushrooms stimulated an intense immune response. Nonetheless, they labored synergistically with shiitake for a stronger impact. The mushroom mix was probably the most highly effective, whereas the maitake alone got here in at a detailed second.
Present Most cancers Assist
As a result of they’re good at modulating the immune system, maitake mushrooms might help the physique in combating in opposition to most cancers. Analysis exhibits the beta-glucans in maitake have an antitumor immune response. In some scientific research, maitake blocked tumor development in mice.
The beta-glucans might improve the exercise of particular immune cells, reminiscent of pure killer (NK) cells and macrophages. These cells play a vital position in figuring out and destroying most cancers cells. By supporting immune operate, maitake mushrooms might assist our capacity to fight most cancers.
One other means maitake mushrooms might help with most cancers is by selling apoptosis. Apoptosis is programmed cell demise that eliminates broken or irregular cells (like most cancers cells). Some research recommend maitake mushroom extracts might induce apoptosis in bladder and breast most cancers cells.
A promising extract is maitake D-fraction, which is out there in complement kind. Vitamin C enhances the motion of each D-fraction and MD-fraction maitake mushroom extracts.
Maitake mushrooms shouldn’t essentially exchange different most cancers remedies. Nonetheless, they will complement different therapies. All the time comply with the medical recommendation of a healthcare skilled you belief.
Could Stability Ldl cholesterol Ranges
One other means Maitake mushrooms might assist beat back continual sickness is by balancing levels of cholesterol. Whereas LDL (low-density lipoprotein) ldl cholesterol is sometimes called “dangerous” ldl cholesterol, it’s not fairly so easy. Lipoprotein knowledgeable Dr. Cromwell explains extra right here on this podcast episode. Different well being components (particularly insulin resistance) play a giant position in our levels of cholesterol.
Maitake’s antioxidants may additionally scale back oxidative stress and irritation. As irritation decreases, there’s much less accumulation of ldl cholesterol within the arteries. The result’s safety in opposition to coronary heart illness.
Could Scale back Blood Stress
Discovering methods to devour maitake commonly might scale back hypertension. In a single animal research, researchers gave maitake extract to rats and decreased age-related hypertension. The researchers have been stunned to search out the D-fraction extract additionally improved insulin sensitivity. This might assist clarify why maitake additionally helps with ldl cholesterol steadiness.
In an older animal research (1989), researchers fed maitake mushrooms to rats for eight weeks. On the finish of the research, blood strain, triglycerides, and levels of cholesterol all went down. Maitake mushrooms’ capacity to decrease these markers implies they could assist scale back the danger of metabolic syndrome and heart problems.
Helps Blood Sugar Stability & Diabetes
A Japanese research examined a powdered maitake fruiting physique on diabetic mice. The maitake mushroom powder had highly effective anti-diabetic properties. The enhancements occurred over 4 months — the length of the research.
One other research appeared on the results on diabetic rats. Feeding this mushroom to the rats improved their glucose tolerance and blood glucose ranges by the top of the research. The researchers concluded that the bioactive compounds within the mushrooms might be able to scale back the signs of diabetes.
Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) is a situation that causes the ovaries to develop cysts round their outer edges. These fluid-filled cysts comprise follicles, however they don’t commonly launch eggs. This ends in rare intervals, lack of ovulation, and extra hair development. Girls with PCOS might produce other hormone-related signs, however probably the most discouraging one is infertility.
Maitake mushrooms might be able to assist. A 2010 Japanese research adopted ladies with PCOS who took both maitake extract or the drug clomiphene citrate. The outcome was that maitake extract induced ovulation for 77% of PCOS sufferers. The mushroom was virtually as efficient because the prescription drug.
Dangers & Precautions of Maitake Mushrooms
Maitake mushrooms are typically thought-about fit for human consumption. They’ve an extended historical past of culinary and medicinal use in Asian international locations. Nonetheless, it’s essential to pay attention to potential dangers and uncomfortable side effects and take mandatory precautions. Listed here are a couple of concerns for maitake mushrooms:
As a result of maitakes can decrease blood sugar ranges, it’s important to watch out when on blood sugar-lowering medicines. In some circumstances, maitake lowered blood sugar ranges an excessive amount of, which might result in hypoglycemia.
The right way to Use Maitake
Your native grocery retailer might carry contemporary maitake mushrooms within the produce part. If not, you’ll be able to typically discover dried maitake in a pure meals retailer or on-line. To retailer, hold maitake mushrooms in a paper bag within the fridge to permit them to “breathe” and soak up extra moisture.
Maitake mushrooms are scrumptious in soups, stir-fries, omelets, and casseroles. It’s also possible to get pleasure from them sauteed in butter or olive oil. This hen of the woods can also be wonderful when paired with an precise hen, like roast rooster. Listed here are some extra methods to get pleasure from Maitake mushrooms:
- Sauteed or Stir-Fried: Prepare dinner them in butter or olive oil over medium warmth till tender and barely browned. Use as a aspect dish or add them to salads, rice (risotto), or your favourite sort of pasta.
- Roasted: Roasting maitake mushrooms enhances their taste and creates a pleasant texture. Toss the mushrooms with olive oil, garlic, and herbs, then unfold them out on a baking sheet and roast within the oven till golden brown and crispy on the edges.
- Grilled: Maitake mushrooms are wonderful for grilling. Merely brush them with oil and season with salt and pepper. Then grill them till tender and barely charred. Grilled maitake mushrooms make a scrumptious and savory addition to any BBQ or cookout.
- Tea and Broths: Conventional Chinese language Medication (TCM) typically makes use of maitake mushrooms in natural teas or broths. These are straightforward methods to get the well being advantages of maitake.
- Mushroom Espresso: You’ll typically discover powdered mushrooms or maitake mushroom extract in mushroom coffees. Take a look at this weblog submit to be taught extra about mushroom espresso.
A Few Suggestions For Consuming Maitake
When cooking with Maitake mushrooms, clear them correctly earlier than use. Gently wipe them with a moist fabric or use a tender brush to take away filth or particles. Keep away from washing them as they soak up water simply. After they tackle an excessive amount of water, it will possibly have an effect on their texture and taste.
Maitake mushrooms can be found contemporary, dried, or in complement kind. For those who’re utilizing dried Maitake mushrooms, rehydrate them in heat water earlier than cooking to revive their texture and taste. If you need the advantages of Maitake mushrooms with out consuming them each day, yow will discover them in complement kind. Ideally, they’re standardized to 30% D-fraction.
Maitake and different medicinal mushrooms are a superb addition to your well being routine.
What I Do
I commonly drink medicinal mushrooms in tasty mushroom “coffees” and teas. The children and I additionally love 4 Sigmatic’s sizzling chocolate and Golden Chai Latte that includes medicinal mushrooms!
To be taught extra about different forms of medicinal mushrooms and their advantages see:
Have you ever eaten or taken maitake mushrooms in some kind? What have been your outcomes? Share under!