What is Shiitake Extract?
Shiitake, also known as oak, golden, Chinese, or black forest mushrooms, is a delicious edible fungus which can be found widely distributed in the forests and grocery stores of the world. In addition to being found in the wild, shiitake is also heavily cultivated for sale in both fresh and dried forms. The mushrooms are heavily used in Asian cuisine, and are also tasty when added to food from other nations as well.
The proper name for shiitake is Lentinus edodes, and the brown mushrooms can grow up to one foot (30 centimeters) in diameter, although they are usually harvested at a size of three to six inches (8-15 centimeters). The cap has a slightly leathery, cracked texture, and the stem is chewy and largely inedible, although it can be used to add seasoning to soups, stews, and sauces. In the wild, shiitakes grow on the trunks of oak trees and other hardwoods in large colonies that will reappear year after year.
Shiitake is also heavily cultivated in Southeast Asia and the Americas. Many of the southern states have large shiitake farms which ship mushrooms all over the United States. Home consumers can also easily grow shiitake using mushroom logs, which will produce mushrooms within a few weeks. Mushroom logs are obtainable from specialty suppliers and come with detailed instructions designed to help consumers produce a bumper crop of fresh, delicious mushrooms.
The flavor of the shiitake is savory, smoky, woody, and slightly meaty, accompanied by a rich scent. The mushrooms are often used in stir fries, sushi, soups, and pasta dishes, although the cook’s imagination is the only limit. Fresh shiitake mushrooms can be obtained in many grocery stores and kept in a brown paper bag under refrigeration for up to two weeks. Dried mushrooms are also easy to obtain, and be used in the same way as fresh shiitakes after being rehydrated in warm water.
Chemical constituents of Shiitake Extract
Shiitake contains polysaccharides (alpha-/beta-homo- and heteroglycans), proteins, nucleic acids, trace minerals, vitamins and provitamins , polyphenolic compounds, and other secondary plant metabolites. Lentinan, one major polysaccharide compound, belongs to the beta-glucans and consists of a beta-(1,3)-linked glucan backbone with two beta-(1,6)-linked glucose side.
Benefits of taking Shiitake Extract supplements:
A Swedish study has shown that shiitake can effectively reduce cholesterol in the body. This ability is due to a compound called eritadenine, which can be found in shiitake and shiitake extract. Another study conducted in Japan showed that regular consumption of shiitake increased the levels of cholesterol in the feces, which means that less cholesterol is left over in the body.
2、Strengthens Immune System
Another reason to eat shiitake regularly is that they effectively strengthen your immune system. Shiitake contain a powerful compound called lentinan, which enables your immune system to fight diseases and infections more efficiently. In fact, shiitake are believed to be more effective than many prescription drugs. Shiitake can help you battle more common infections like influenza to more serious health ailments like HIV.
The compound lentinan not only helps boost your immune system but can also help prevent cancer. According to studies, lentinan promotes several anti-cancer activities. It can reduce the growth of cancerous cells and prevent the spread of existing ones. The compound also stimulates your immune system to release proteins and cells that destroy cancer cells. Gastric cancers in particular can be prevented by regular consumption of shiitake.
Consuming shiitake extract has also been shown to effectively prevent thrombosis. Thrombosis is a health condition that produces blood clots in your veins which leads to restricted blood flow. If you’ve ever gone on a long-haul flight where you had to sit for long periods of time without activity, then chances are you have experienced this disorder. Thrombosis usually occurs in the veins of the legs and can be quite painful. Shiitake mushrooms contain high levels of lenthionine, which prevents platelets from aggregating.
5、Rich in Iron
Shiitake is rich in iron, a mineral which is essential for maintaining good health. Iron improves the circulation of oxygen through your blood. As a result, oxygen and other nutrients are effectively supplied to your muscle cells, brain and other parts of the body. Iron is also used to treat anemia, so if you are anemic as a result of menstruation or pregnancy, make sure you incorporate plenty of shiitake into your diet. Iron can also boost your energy level and prevent fatigue.
6、Aids in Weight Loss
If you are currently trying to lose weight, shiitake makes a great diet food. Not only do they contain a small amount of calories, but they are also packed with plenty of dietary fiber. Dietary fiber slows down digestion so you feel full for a longer period of time.
Side effects and safety of Shiitake Extract
Most minor adverse effects are believed to be caused by lentinan, the polysaccharide derivative of shiitake. There has been one report each of depression, rigor, fever, chills, and abnormal blood cell counts; elevated liver enzymes were reported in one study following treatment with lentinan in cancer patients.
Shiitake can cause abdominal discomfort and abnormal blood cell counts when taken by mouth. Abdominal obstruction and death was reported due to the ingestion of a whole shiitake mushroom. Temporary diarrhea and abdominal bloating may occur after taking high amounts of shiitake. Mushroom workers exposed to shiitake spores by inhalation have experienced hypersensitivity pneumonitis.
Rapid IV infusion of lentinan, the polysaccharide derivative of shiitake, to advanced cancer patients was reported to cause anterior chest depression and dryness of the throat in one study; slow infusion relieved these symptoms. Back pain and leg pain has been reported following the administration of lentinan in cancer patients. Shiitake can cause «shiitake» dermatitis and possibly photosensitivity when taken by mouth. Allergic contact dermatitis has been induced by shiitake hyphae.
Dosage of Shiitake Extract supplement:
Many shiitake supplements recommend a dosage of around 500 mg or 1500 mg. This is quite a variation so what is the ideal dosage? It is thought that the ideal dosage is 1000 mg of shiitake extract per day to see positive appetite-suppressing results.
Of course there are many variables that enter the equation. You body size, weight, health and metabolic rate will all come into play. You may require more or even less than the 1000 mg. Most guidelines on this recommend that you start out at the lower limits – say around 500mg and then judge the results for yourself. If you are happy that your appetite is lowered then you might want to stick to this dosage. If you are not happy you may want to increase the dosage. It should take a few days for you to see or feel the results so reserve judgment until then.
There are some other Mushroom extract Polysaccharides Series available from Nutragreen biotechnology such as