Oyster mushrooms are a superfood that can be found almost everywhere in the world. These are one of the easiest mushrooms to grow at home or find growing in the wild. They grow most anywhere from temperate climates to tropical regions and thrive by feeding on decaying organic matter such as fallen trees.
Recent research has now established that the oyster mushroom is more than just a functional food. It is also an effective medicine well-known for its healing capabilities as compared to other medicinal mushrooms.
1. Immune System Support
One of the most significant beneficial effects to one’s health when consuming mushrooms comes from the ability of oyster mushrooms to both enhance one’s immune system as well as improve its regulation. So both those who wish to strengthen their immune system to fight cancer or infectious illnesses and those individuals suffering from autoimmune disorders or allergies can benefit.
Research has shown oyster mushrooms to be effective against drug resistant E. coli and Staph. infections. Studies have also shown it to be effective against Candida overgrowth and Streptococcus or Enterococcus infections.
Oyster mushrooms can exert both direct and indirect antiviral effects through immune system-enhancing activity. Ubiquitin is an antiviral protein isolate from oyster mushrooms. The mushroom also has potential to inhibit cell replication in viruses including HIV.
Polysaccharides within the oyster mushrooms have shown potent anti-tumor activity in both in-vitro and animal studies. One specific antioxidant - polysaccharide pleuran - has shown promise in combating colon cancer. Other anti-cancer effects of the oyster mushroom come from its ability to reduce DNA damage through multiple mechanisms.
5. Lowers Blood Sugar
High blood sugar is a hallmark of type I and type II diabetes. The high fiber and beneficial protein content along with the low-fat content of mushrooms make them an ideal food for any individual wishing to combat diabetes naturally. Guanide, a compound contained in oyster mushrooms, exerts a powerful anti-hyperglycemic effect, naturally lowering blood sugar levels.
6. Lowers Blood Pressure
Oyster mushrooms have been found to have a relaxation effect on the smooth muscle of the arterial walls, thus effectively lowering blood pressure.
Oyster mushrooms have been shown to have an anti-inflammatory effect within the body by down-regulating pro-inflammatory pathways involved in both chronic (autoimmune etc.) and acute (allergies, tissue injury) type hyper-inflammatory conditions.
With all these health enhancing and medicinal properties in such a readily available functional food source, one must include oyster mushrooms as a true super-food.
Medicinal Properties of Pleurotus Species (Oyster Mushroom): A Review World Journal of Fungal and Plant Biology 3 (1): 01-12, 2012 https://www.idosi.org/wjfpb/wjfpb3(1)12/1.pdf