With more than 300 varieties available in China, mushrooms are a fabulous food source that not only taste good but offer exceptional health benefits for our bodies.
Mushrooms are a big favorite for both their taste and rich nutritional value. Traditional Chinese medicine also recommends different kinds of mushrooms for their health-maintaining functions such as reinforcing qi (energy) and detoxification.
Mushrooms are viewed as longevity food in many countries due to their rich nutritional content as well as being widely believed to be an anti-cancer food.
Apart from protein, fat and carbohydrate, they also contain rich vitamins and micro elements such as calcium, iron and phosphorus. Vitamin B12 in mushrooms, hardly found in other vegetables, can help prevent anemia while the rich hyskon, amylase and polypeptide are extremely important in children's growth.
Mushrooms are also widely used as dietary therapy in TCM, effective in benefiting the spleen and relieving high blood pressure. And different kinds of mushrooms have their own functions.
There are more than 300 varieties of mushrooms available in China including champignons and oyster mushrooms. Champignon (xianggu)
TCM believes "neutral" champignons can help reinforce and regulate qi and blood, benefit liver, kidney, spleen and stomach, calm nerves, dissolve phlegm, detoxify the body and has anti-cancer properties.
They are recommended to help relieve constipation, urinary incontinence, ulcer and cancer as well as help promote good appetite and lose weight and nourish the skin.
Champignons are suitable for most people except for those with urinary incontinence or a qi-blocked spleen due to pathogenic cold or dampness.
They are strongly recommended to those with weak immune systems, anemia, high blood pressure, high blood fat, hardened arteries, diabetes, kidney inflammation or cancer.
(Shanghai Daily November 21, 2008)