" Extensive animal and human trials are warranted to fully understand the therapeutic components of mushrooms. "
Could eating mushrooms reduce the risk of dementia?

A review has been undertaken looking at all the scientific information available on edible and culinary mushrooms in relation to their ability to delay and/or prevent dementia.

The research, published in the Journal of Medicinal Food, suggests that edible and medicinal mushrooms contain bioactive compounds that may enhance nerve growth in the brain and protect against neurotoxicity such as inflammation.

Mushrooms contain polysaccharides which have an ability to act as immunomodulating agents (or stimulate the immune system). The review, which references more than 80 scientific publications, concludes that some mushrooms may effectively enhance cell production in the brain through three mechanisms:

  1. stimulating Nerve Growth Factor (important for cell growth) production,
  2. mimicking the Nerve Growth Factor reactivity, or
  3. protecting neurons from neurotoxicants-induced cell death.

While the research suggests that regular consumption of mushrooms may reduce of delay development of age-related neurodegeneration, it does emphasise that extensive animal and human trials are warranted to fully understand the therapeutic components of mushrooms.

The editor in chief of the Journal which the study was published stated publicly that she hopes “the current study might stimulate the identification of more food materials that are neuroprotective”.

While the review might trigger you to think a diet full of mushrooms might be best for you, it is recommended to always consult a health professional before modifying your diet or nutritional intake in any way.

If this review does interest you, it is freely available to review until 18 February 2017 via the following link http://online.liebertpub.com/doi/full/10.1089/jmf.2016.3740

 Posted: February 1st, 2017
Discussion

John said:

I'm very interested in the latest development with Alzheimer's.One day the medical research facility will come to a definite conclusion.Meanwhile it helps to see the steps taken in this horrible disease that continues to rob us of our loved ones and friends.

Mannie said:

the article noted 'some mushrooms may effectively enhance cell production in the brain.' Can you name the more desirable ones in this instance please?

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