Mushrooms For Your Tummy!
Saturday we participated in our first live event. We were vendors at the 2nd annual WNC Fermenting Festival in Western North Carolina.
I know what you’re thinking. What was a mushroom company doing at a festival celebrating all things fermented?
We pondered that very question from our booth between a kombucha crafter and an artisanal gluten-free sourdough bread maker. One of these things is not like the other.
But if you look a little closer, dig a little deeper, you’ll find that we had a legitimate reason to be there. Remember, fermented foods are great for a healthy gut. They provide pre and probiotic benefits, supporting the good bacteria in our gut and helping the entire digestive system.
So do some mushrooms.
Perhaps the most gut-friendly mushroom is one you wouldn’t think of eating, the very common Trametes Versicolor, better known as Turkey Tail. Turkey Tail mushrooms contain Polysaccharopeptide (PSP), a prebiotic polysaccharide. According to research, PSP has been found to encourage beneficial bacteria growth in the gut, helping to maintain intestinal health. Turkey Tail mushrooms also contain the compound Polysaccharide K (PSK) which helps to support immune response.
Chaga, Inonotus Obliquus, is a fungus that typically grows on birch trees and contains many beneficial compounds that support overall health. What you may not know is that it can also support digestive health. Chaga provides manganese, thiamin and digestive enzymes to the body and is a good source of fiber. These compounds are all supportive of a healthy digestive system. Its anti-inflammatory properties are beneficial to the stomach and intestines, supporting digestion and aiding in nutrient absorption and has been found to inhibit oxidative stress in IBD patients.
Another beneficial mushroom is Lion’s Mane, Hericium erinacous. The extract from this mushroom may prevent the development of stomach ulcers. Research indicates that it can be effective at inhibiting the growth of H. pylori and protecting the stomach lining from damage. Lion’s Mane extract may also reduce inflammation and prevent tissue damage in other areas of the intestines, positively impacting inflammatory bowel diseases.
Why should we care about supporting a healthy gut environment? More and more studies are finding that a healthy digestive system is critical for our overall health. A healthy gut biome helps maintain a healthy metabolic processes, can assist in preventing disease, and can promote overall wellness.
So along with eating fermented foods, adding mushrooms or mushroom extracts such as tinctures to your diet can go a long way to supporting your health.
Another great reason to add mushrooms to your life!