A 2011 study published in the Journal of Obesity examined the effects of shiitake mushrooms on plasma lipid profiles, fat dispositions, energy efficiency and body fat index. Rats were fed a high-fat diet for a six-week period. Researchers found significant effects of dietary intervention on body weight gain. Rats on a high dose of shiitake mushroom diet (which involved adding mushroom powder to a high-fat diet) had 35 percent lower body weight gains than rats on low and medium shiitake mushroom diets. Rats on the high dose shiitake mushroom diet also had significantly lower total fat masses and had a trend of lower fat accumulation.
Certain components of the shiitake mushroom have hypolipidaemic (fat-reducing) effects, such as eritadenine and b-glucan, a soluble dietary fiber that’s also found in barley, rye and oats. Studies have reported that b-glucan can increase satiety, reduce food intake, delay nutrition absorption and reduce plasma lipid (fat) levels.
The researchers concluded by suggesting that shiitake mushrooms can help prevent body weight gain, fat deposition and plasma triacylglycerol when added to a high-fat diet. This encourages an effort to pursue human studies that examine the efficacy of shiitake mushrooms for the prevention and treatment of obesity and related metabolic disorders.
As far as nutrition goes, 100 grams of shiitake mushrooms contains about (10):
- 34 calories
- 0.5 gram fat
- 6.8 grams carbohydrates
- 2.5 grams dietary fiber
- 2.4 grams sugar
- 2.2 grams protein
- 4 milligrams niacin (19 percent DV)
- 1.5 milligrams pantothenic acid (15 percent DV)
- 0.2 milligrams vitamin B6 (15 percent DV)
- 0.2 milligrams riboflavin (13 percent DV)
- 18 international units vitamin D (4 percent DV)
- 0.2 milligrams manganese (12 percent DV)
- 112 milligrams phosphorus (11 percent DV)
- 5.7 micrograms selenium (8 percent DV)
- 0.1 milligrams copper (7 percent DV)
- 1 milligram zinc (7 percent DV)
- 304 milligrams potassium (6 percent DV)
- 20 milligrams magnesium (5 percent DV)
- 0.4 milligrams iron (2 percent DV)