Mushrooms Antiaging Potential
Laurence T. Gayao M.D.
According to studies lead by Dr. Robert Beelman, Professor Emeritus of Food Science at Penn State, show mushrooms antiaging potential after researchers found that mushrooms had unusually high amounts of two important antioxidants ergothioneine and glutathione.
Antioxidants Glutathione and Ergothioneine
Some of you may have used cosmetics and soaps that has glutathione to help rejuvenate your skin. Some even have taken it intravenously for the same purpose. It is also used to help lighten the skin pigment. Our cells contain glutathione, which is a substance made from three amino acids: cysteine, glutamate, and glycine. Glutathione plays a role in many chemical reactions in your body. It also helps detoxify chemicals, including some that your body creates naturally, as well as pollutants and drugs.
Ergothioneine antioxidant is another example of just how vital amino acids are to the functionality and health of our entire bodies, including our skin. It has been observed to aggregate in areas of the body were there is high oxidative process to provide protection. Experts have known about its existence for a century, but ergothioneine is only now becoming more widely recognized as an essential nutrient that may need to be supplemented through our diets and topical products. It too has been incorporated into cosmetic products for its antiaging properties.
According to studies published in recent issue of Food Chemistry the levels of the antioxidants ergothioneine and glutathione vary from species to species of mushroom. The wild mushroom porcini found to have the highest. This particular species is popularly used in Italy.
What are Free Radicals
The body uses food to produce energy and in the process, causes oxidative stress as a result of free radicals are produced. Some free radicals are formed as natural byproducts of your body’s processes, including eating and breathing, and you are exposed to free radicals from environmental toxins, household chemicals and cigarette smoke. Antioxidants made by your body and consumed in plant foods helps prevent free radical damage.
These free radicals cause damage to cells, proteins and DNA which leads to aging. Free radicals are toxic, the body tries to control them with antioxidants but if there is enough buildup of the level in the body it could cause damage which could result in aging, heart disease, Alzheimer’s disease and even Cancer.
Other Food Packed with Antioxidants
The Mayo Clinic Health Letter details many of the foods that pack a high-antioxidant punch, including:
Berries: Colorful berries, particularly blueberries and strawberries, appear to have heart-healthy effects. Research suggests they may lower blood pressure and positively influence blood vessel health.
Curcumin: Curcumin is found in the spice turmeric, the main spice used to prepare curry. Curcumin is thought to have antioxidant properties, as it may decrease swelling and inflammation. Preliminary research suggests that curcumin may prevent cancer and possibly slow the spread of cancer.
Cruciferous vegetables: This family includes broccoli, cauliflower, Swiss chard, Brussels sprouts, kale and turnips. Research suggests these foods have a protective effect in preventing prostate, colorectal and lung cancers.
Blue Corn: Corn often gets a bad rap as a starchy vegetable. But blue corn, and even cornmeal, contain substances known for strong antioxidant and anti-inflammation activities.
Foods, rather than supplements, are the safest way to increase antioxidant levels. Some high-dose antioxidant supplements, including beta carotene, vitamin A and vitamin E, have been associated with health risks including an increased risk of overall mortality. No concerns have been raised about the safety of antioxidants consumed in foods.
Blue Zone and Antioxidants in their Diets
The Blue Zones, are places identified around the world with populations with longer life span and with more concentration of centenarians. One thing in common among this group is their diet, they were high in antioxidant though not necessarily vegans but their diets were predominately plant based and rich in nutrients, from freshly grown fruits, vegetables, nuts and grain. They also consumed notably lesser amounts of animal protein and processed foods.
Yes, Mushrooms Antiaging Potential, but let us not forget that eating more fresh plant food products helps slow down the aging process and also prevents many health problems.
Your Fitness Doc