Shiitake Mushrooms – Best source of Vitamin D

We are now listing fresh Shiitake Mushrooms!
If you are not familiar with this mushroom, there’s nothing to be afraid of! It’s one of the most commonly cultivated gourmet mushrooms in the world.
They are a great source of fibre, protein, B vitamins and manganese. These mushrooms are also high vitamin D, and as the days get shorter this makes shiitake and important addition to your diet over the winters.
Freshly picked shiitake mushrooms contain about 110 IU of vitamin D per 100 grams. However, when exposed to sunlight with the gills facing down for 6 hours, the vitamin D content increases to 10,900 IU. When place in the sun with the gills facing up vitamin D content increases to 46,000 IU (gills facing up). This makes sun-bathed shiitake mushrooms are the highest source of vitamin D any food!
If you are interested in the health benefits of mushrooms there is a lot of research out there now. One of the potential benefits of mushroom comes from the long sugar chains (polysacharides) produced in the cell wall of the fungi. These “bet-linked glucans” can help modulate the immune system. The shiitake mushrooms produces the polysacharide Lentinan a very interesting compound the significance of which we are only just beginning fully understand.
The best way to cooks these mushrooms is to lightly saute them. The heat helps to breakdown the chitin in the cell wall and release those polysacharides.

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