Why You Should Be Adding More Mushrooms To Your Diet | Men's Health Magazine Australia

Why You Should Be Adding More Mushrooms To Your Diet

It’s a truth universally acknowledged that when it comes to dinner parties, certain foods are as controversial as the topics discussed. In 2021, you’ll likely set off a heated discussion based on whether you serve full cream or oat milk with the post-meal coffee, while things like gluten should be steered clear of completely. The use of coriander could see guests get up and leave, while other ingredients like bleu cheese, olives, and tofu are likely going to see a number of people heading up McDonald’s Drive-Thru after leaving hungry. Another food that also happens to divide guests is that of mushrooms. Whether it’s a textural thing or simply down to taste, the fungi isn’t everyone’s cup of tea. But as researchers have found, if you’re a runner you should be adding them to your diet with a lot more regularity. 

A recent study published in Food Science & Nutrition found that adding just half a cup of mushrooms to your daily diet can help increase the intake of several micronutrients, especially vitamin D, potassium, fibre and zinc. 

Those vitamins might not mean much to you, but for runners you can’t look past the importance of potassium and fibre for helping to keep the digestive system regular. Most people struggle to get enough of both nutrients, but adding mushrooms to your diet is a sure-fire way to ensure you do. Vitamin D is especially necessary for the absorption of calcium and maintenance of strong bones, which is essential when it comes to running and the stress placed on bones. 

Low in calories, carbohydrates, fat and sodium, mushrooms are one of the healthiest additions you can make to your meals and are approved by a range of dietary restrictions. They also contain antioxidants which can help with post-exercise recovery and boost your immune system. Functional mushrooms like chaga or Lion’s mane are also thought to have antioxidant properties that most supplements try to replicate. They are often used in Eastern medicine to decrease the likelihood of diseases, but when it comes to finding these mushrooms in their natural form, it’s pretty tough. 

Nutritionists suggest cooking mushrooms in oil as, given their high vitamin D value, it might increase the absorption. Really though, it doesn’t matter which way you eat them – just get them in. 

More From