Second to lung cancer, prostate cancer is still one of the most common cancers worldwide and while the causes of prostate cancer are still unknown, we do know that age, heredity, hormones, diet and lifestyle all play a role. 

Selenium came to the forefront of prostate cancer research when, in 1996, skin cancer patients were given selenium to learn whether it would prevent a recurrence. It had no effect on skin cancer, but researchers noticed that it did decrease prostate cancer by more than 60%, which prompted a further study.

 

So where do mushrooms come in? When it comes to Selenium content, mushrooms surpass all other items in the produce category. The Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) for Selenium is 55 mcg (micrograms) for adults. The US Dept of Agriculture (USDA)'s National Nutrient Database reports that grilled Portobella mushrooms have 26.5 mcg of Selenium per serving, nearly half of the daily RDA for an adult. Portabellini mushrooms and white button mushrooms are also good sources of the nutrient. 

What makes mushrooms even more remarkable is that they also contain a powerful antioxidant called l-ergothioneine which is heat-stable meaning it is present in both raw and cooked mushrooms. Antioxidant activity is enhanced by the presence of selenium and as mushrooms contain a significant amount of selenium in every serving, they could turn out to be important ingredients in a cancer-fighting diet.

Mushrooms are not only a powerhouse of minerals; they are also good sources of three essential B-vitamins: riboflavin, niacin and pantothenic acid. This underrated Superfood is also a good source of potassium and studieshave shown that diets rich in this mineral and low in sodium (tick mushrooms again!) can reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease, the number one killer of men.

So there you have it, mushrooms are not only hugely nutritious; they are delicious, versatile and jam-packed with flavour too! No wonder we don’t need an excuse to throw a handful (or two!) into just about every dish!

Over the next few weeks, we'll share great and easy mushroom recipes that are not only tasty but also nutritious and healthy too!


Benefits of high-selenium foods: 

Benefits of anti-oxidants:

 

Leave a Reply