5 Types Of Mushrooms You Need To Try, Plus How To Use Them

types of mushrooms health benefits

Did you know that the largest organism on the planet is actually a fungus? Occupying a total area of 2,385 acres, this specimen of honey mushroom is bioluminescent (that means it glows!) and somewhere between 2,400 and 8,650 years old. 

On top of that, did you know that mushrooms are more genetically similar to human beings than they are to plants? 

We could go on and on with the crazy mushroom facts, but we'd be here all day. The long and short of it is that mushrooms are fascinating, amazing, and endlessly mysterious. 

Are you looking for more types of mushrooms to add to your diet or supplement routine? Let's take a look at five different mushroom types that you should definitely know about. 

1. Lion's Mane Mushroom 

These remarkable-looking mushrooms look like a lion's mane. Also known as yamabushitake or hou you gu, lion's mane mushrooms are widely used for medicinal and culinary purposes in several Asian countries. 

Mushrooms are delicious and have a seafood-like taste, with many people saying they taste like lobster or crab. 

Containing bioactive substances that have beneficial effects on the gut, brain, and heart, shrooms have been popular as a health supplement in the west in recent years. 

You can learn more about the health benefits of lions mane mushroom extract here. 

2. Shiitake Mushroom 

Shiitake mushrooms are native to East Asia and are considered to be medicinal in some schools of traditional medicine. 

Almost all of the shiitake that are sold commercially are grown in Japan, but China, Canada, Singapore, and the U.S. also produce these mushrooms. They are available in supplement form as well as dried and fresh. 

You can use shiitake mushrooms in soups, stir-fries, stews, and many other types of dishes. 

These mushrooms have been used in the medical traditions of China, Korea, Japan, and Eastern Russia. In Chinese medicine, it is believed that these mushrooms can help to improve circulation as well as boost longevity and health. 

There have been some studies that have found that shiitakes might protect against inflammation and cancer. They also might aid heart health, boost your immune system, and might even strengthen your bones. 

3. Enoki Mushroom 

Best known for their role in Japanese cuisine, enoki mushrooms look very different when cultivated versus when you find them in the wild. 

In the wild, these mushrooms have much deeper coloring. When cultivated, they are smaller and a delicate white color. 

While there isn't as much research into the potential health benefits of enoki mushrooms are there are in some other species, there are some studies that support these mushrooms as promoting health in a number of different bodily systems. 

For one, enoki might help to boost the immune system. It seems that they might help to stimulate the normal production of white blood cells, which are an essential part of the health of your immune system. 

They also might help promote heart health. This is because they might help to promote normal blood cholesterol levels and normal blood pressure. 

4. Oyster Mushroom 

A common type of mushroom, oyster mushrooms are named due to their similar color and shape to oysters. You can find oyster mushrooms for sale in many grocery stores as an edible food, but they are also used for medical purposes as well. 

These mushrooms have a delicate flavor that can be used in a lot of different savory dishes. 

An excellent source of many important vitamins, oyster mushrooms are a reasonable addition to your balanced diet. These vitamins include niacin, pantothenic acid, riboflavin, vitamin B6, folate, and thiamin. 

Additionally, minerals like phosphorus, copper, potassium, magnesium, iron, selenium, and manganese are found in oyster mushrooms. 

It is possible that eating oyster mushrooms can help to lower your cholesterol. One 2015 study found that the dietary fiber in oyster mushrooms might help to reduce the accumulation of triglycerides in the liver. 

They also might help to boost your immune system. One small study from 2016 found that eating oyster mushrooms for eight weeks might have enhanced the immune function of participants. 

Other potential benefits include reducing the risk of cancer and improving metabolic health. 

5. Morel Mushroom 

Morel mushrooms are a true delight. You can buy them dried year-round, buy them seasonally at farmers' markets and grocery stores, and maybe even find some of your own in the woods if you are searching with a foraging expert. 

These mushrooms have an earthy and strong flavor. Prized by foragers, they can be harvested for a short period in the spring. It is difficult to commercially cultivate these mushrooms, so they aren't always easy to find in stores. 

Used for centuries in traditional medicine, many people believe there are health benefits to eating morels. However, they are not as well-researched as some of the other mushrooms on this list. 

One of the health benefits of morels mushrooms is their vitamin D content. Vitamin D is essential for a number of key bodily functions, including regulating your blood pressure and stimulating your immune system's messenger cells. 

Which Of These Types Of Mushrooms Are You Going To Try Next? 

The world of fungi and mushrooms is endlessly fascinating. Some mushrooms are poisonous, some cause hallucinations, some can be used for legitimate medicinal purposes, and others are just downright delicious! 

The wacky world of mushrooms is a rabbit hole you have to be careful not to fall down. Once you start learning about mushrooms, you might not be able to stop. 

Did you find this article about five types of mushrooms to try interesting? If so, be sure to check out the rest of our blog for more informative and interesting articles on mushrooms an other things to improve your health!

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