Sometimes, people can just get tired of eating the same thing over and over. With our society’s obsession with fast food and convenient snack items, it is no longer surprising that some people may want to try different types of food items from all across the globe.
One of the most interesting types of cuisine is those coming from India. This is because Indian cuisine has that distinct flavor that is unique and flavorful. One dish from India is a mushroom masala.
But what is mushroom masala and why is it something worth looking into? In this article, we look at what mushroom masala is and some of the possible health benefits of eating mushrooms. Read on to find out more.
Mushroom Masala: A Brief Introduction
Mushroom masala is a type of curry dish originating from India and is commonly made using herbs, spices, tomatoes, onions, and of course, mushrooms.
Making mushroom masala can be quite easy and even enjoyable and with the right ingredients and preparation processes, it can result in great meal ideas for family and friends.
In fact, mushroom masala has a rich and smooth texture that can be compared to that of a flavor-rich gravy. Mushroom masala goes well with different other food items such as plain paratha, ghee rice, jeera rice, and basmati rice that is plain.
While mushrooms are not traditionally used in Indian cuisines but they are still utilized in the preparation of dishes such as mushroom stir fry, curries, mushroom pulao, and mushroom biryani.
The beauty of Indian recipes is that it can be quite varied and diverse. Depending on the region where a particular dish originated from, these recipes can be prepared in a number of different ways using different processes.
Health Benefits Of Eating Mushrooms
In general, mushrooms can provide some potent health benefits. Listed below are some of the possible health benefits of eating mushrooms:
Help fight off cancer
There is evidence to suggest that certain mushrooms can significantly suppress cancer cells of the breast from growing and reproducing which means that mushrooms, both specialty and regular ones, can be considered chemoprotective especially in address cancer of the breast.
Another form of mushroom, Shitaake, was observed to contain lentinan, a type of sugar molecule that has been shown to help patients in terms of extended survival especially when taken alongside chemotherapy sessions. In fact, it has been recognized since 1985 in Japan for its properties that are considered anti-tumor.
It must be noted though, lentinan found in mushrooms helps slow down the growth of tumors by enhancing the immune response of cancer patients resulting in tumors that are weakened in terms of growth and development.
Other research conducted in Japan showed that male individuals who consumed mushrooms regularly had a much-reduced risk of developing cancer of the prostate.
Boost the immunity or the immune response of individuals
Aside from lentinan, which was discussed the previous entry, mushrooms have another immune-boosting sugar known as Beta-glucan. These sugars can be found in cell walls of plants and other fungi and can also help individuals enhance their immune response.
While lentinan is commonly obtained from Shitake mushrooms, beta-glucan can be acquired from other buttons and common mushrooms.
Mushrooms can aid in reducing cholesterol levels
Generally speaking, mushrooms are free from cholesterol. However, mushrooms contain fibers such as beta-glucan and chitin both of which can help reduce the levels of cholesterol of individuals. One study showed that pink oyster mushrooms can lower total LDL cholesterol or bad cholesterol in rats that are hypercholesterolemic.
On the other hand, shiitake mushrooms can provide compounds that can aid the liver in the processing and removal of cholesterol from the bloodstream. Others also claim that mushrooms contain phytonutrients that are potent in terms of keeping cells from being stuck in the walls of blood vessels. This in turn help in the prevention of the buildup of plaque, leading to improved blood circulation and managing blood pressure levels.
Mushrooms are high in vitamin D and Vitamin B
One of the few sources of vitamin D in terms of food items and consumables, mushrooms can provide the said vitamins to help individuals fight the harmful rays of the sun (UV). Criminis and button mushrooms both have increased levels of vitamins D and Vitamins B.
Vitamin B12 can be found in Criminis. This is critical for vegans and vegetarians since vitamin B12 can normally only be found in products that are animal-based. Vitamin B12 is critical for our body’s overall health as it provides people with energy.
On the other hand, Vitamin D is critical as it can aid the body in the promotion of bone development and in calcium absorption.
Mushrooms have powers that are potently anti-inflammatory
Mushrooms of different varieties can provide antioxidants that are powerful in the form of ergothioneine. Ergothioneine has been shown to help in the reduction of inflammation.
Reishi mushrooms, a type of mushroom that has been for thousands of years used in the Asian regions for its medicinal properties, has also been observed to have anti-inflammatory properties. In addition, it has been linked with reduced tumor growth, suppressed allergic reactions, reduced inflammation, and potent disease-fighting properties.
Cancer patients may gain from “magic” mushrooms
In a study conducted on 80 patients suffering from cancer, a naturally occurring compound that is psychedelic was given to the said patients in the form of psilocybin. The patients who previously felt depressed and anxious experienced feeling happier, content, and feeling more connected to others in their community.
These effects stayed with patients for almost half a year. This means that the psilocybin found in different types of mushrooms can be beneficial for people suffering from PTSD or post-traumatic stress disorder. It’s also good for those suffering from depression. These were found as the results of the study published in a journal focused on psychopharmacology entitled “Journal of Psychopharmacology”.