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shiitake mushroom health benefits by Antioxi

4 Health Benefits of Shiitake Mushroom

  • What Is The Shiitake Mushroom?
  • Health Benefits of Shiitake Mushroom
  • How to use the Shiitake Mushroom?
  • Side Effects and Safety

    If you’re a foodie, chances are you’ve heard of popular mushrooms used in cooking. Specifically, mushrooms like Shiitake. 

    Shiitake mushrooms are one of the tastiest mushrooms known for their rich, savoury taste. Much more, these mushrooms are also known for some of their health benefits for skin health, immunity, and digestion.


    What Is The Shiitake Mushroom?

    Shiitake Mushroom Fruiting Body On Green Stems

    The Shiitake mushroom is a type of edible fungus native to East Asia, notably in Japan, from where the word “Shiitake” came from. Shiitake is a combination of Japanese words that stand for the Castanopsis cuspidata tree, which Shiitake mushrooms are cultivated. 

    Shiitake mushrooms can be described as having a tan to dark brown colour, with mushroom caps that can grow anywhere from 5 to 10 cm. They are typically considered vegetables in cooking and are normally added in various recipes including fried, stir-fried, and a few soup recipes. 

    Shiitake Mushroom Nutrition

    Like many other mushroom species, shiitake are low in calories, and a rich source of fibre, B vitamins, and some minerals. You can also use shiitake as an amino acid source, with some reports saying it contains the same amount of amino acids as meat on a dry weight basis.

    Just like other mushrooms, shiitake is also known to contain antioxidants, flavonoids and active compounds which have been studied for their health benefits for improved immunity and heart health.


    Health Benefits of Shiitake Mushroom

    1) Gut Health & Digestion

    Studies suggest that due to the mushrooms fibre content it can help promote a  healthier gut.

    Fibre is known to adequately manage gut inflammation, which is critical for a healthy digestive system. The mushroom works by blunting markers and signals that trigger inflammation in the gut. [3]

    Because shiitake is a rich source of fibre, you can also expect it to work like a typical fibre supplement regarding intestinal “cleansing” or detox, as it helps you excrete wastes more efficiently. 

    Lastly, shiitake can also have prebiotic effects, which can lay the groundwork for the growth of good bacteria. This can lead to not just a healthier gut, but also stronger immunity, as 75% of the body’s immune cells are produced in the gut.

    Learn about the other medicinal mushrooms that can help improve gut health

    2) Clearer and Smoother Skin

    A little-known fact about mushrooms is how some of them act as potent cosmetics, especially for skin health. Shiitake contains a lot of powerful antioxidants as well as pro-skin health minerals like selenium

    A 12-week study involving selenium supplementation suggested using selenium on acne can reduce scars. [1]

    Learn about the other medicinal mushrooms that can help improve skin health.

    3) Improved Energy Levels

    B vitamins are sometimes referred to as energy vitamins because they’re often involved in energy metabolism. This would explain why B vitamins are routinely added to various supplements, including energy drinks and pre-workouts.

    Shiitake mushroom is a rich source of B vitamins, with one study saying B vitamins can help you be more mentally energized and clear brain fog. [2]

    4) Weight Management

    Some consumers are turning to mushrooms for their weight loss management, and with good reason. Mushrooms, if prepared properly, can offer just as much nutrition as meat minus the extra calories. 

    Mushrooms like shiitake also contain beta-glucans, which is a soluble fibre. Beta glucans can promote heart health as well as satiety, which can help you feel full for longer and prevent snacking or overeating. [4] 

    Research also suggests eating shiitake can reduce fat build-up around the liver. This can make shiitake a complementary treatment to weight loss programs and those with metabolic syndrome. [5]

    How to use the Shiitake Mushroom?

    For supplements, it is suggested using 3-5 g or 6-10 capsules (500 mg each) daily. 


    Side Effects and Safety

    If you have a mushroom allergy, you should not use these mushroom extracts. Caution is advised if using mushrooms along with blood thinning medication.

    In conclusion, Shiitake mushrooms are one of the most popular mushrooms in the world. The mushrooms are a rich source of B vitamins, antioxidants, fibres, and active compounds such as beta d glucans that help promote immunity, gut health, energy, weight loss, and skin health. 



    1) Michaëlsson G, Edqvist LE. Erythrocyte glutathione peroxidase activity in acne vulgaris and the effect of selenium and vitamin E treatment. Acta Derm Venereol. 1984;64(1):9-14. PMID: 6203294.

    Calvaresi E, Bryan J. B vitamins, cognition, and aging: a review. J Gerontol B Psychol Sci Soc Sci. 2001 Nov;56(6):P327-39. doi: 10.1093/geronb/56.6.p327. PMID: 11682586.

    2) Dai X, Stanilka JM, Rowe CA, Esteves EA, Nieves C Jr, Spaiser SJ, Christman MC, Langkamp-Henken B, Percival SS. Consuming Lentinula edodes (Shiitake) Mushrooms Daily Improves Human Immunity: A Randomized Dietary Intervention in Healthy Young Adults. J Am Coll Nutr. 2015;34(6):478-87. doi: 10.1080/07315724.2014.950391. Epub 2015 Apr 11. PMID: 25866155.

    3) El Khoury D, Cuda C, Luhovyy BL, Anderson GH. Beta glucan: health benefits in obesity and metabolic syndrome. J Nutr Metab. 2012;2012:851362. doi: 10.1155/2012/851362. Epub 2011 Dec 11. PMID: 22187640; PMCID: PMC3236515.

    4) Handayani D, Chen J, Meyer BJ, Huang XF. Dietary Shiitake Mushroom (Lentinus edodes) Prevents Fat Deposition and Lowers Triglyceride in Rats Fed a High-Fat Diet. J Obes. 2011;2011:258051. doi: 10.1155/2011/258051. Epub 2011 Oct 19. PMID: 22028957; PMCID: PMC3199106.

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    The information on this blog is for informational purposes only and not a substitute for professional medical advice. Always consult a healthcare professional before using medicinal mushrooms, especially if you are on medication or have a health condition. We do not guarantee the accuracy of the information provided. Use at your own risk. Statements about health benefits have not been evaluated by regulatory authorities. By using this blog, you agree to this disclaimer.