Skip to content

Can Mushroom Help You Lose Weight?

Discover the power of mushrooms for weight loss. Learn about their benefits and incorporate them into your diet for a healthier lifestyle.

Written by Liposet Staff

Updated on

Mushrooms For Weight Loss Mushrooms For Weight Loss. Image/Shutterstock

Mushrooms are a type of medicinal fungi with notably numerous weight loss-related health benefits, which make them a good idea for anybody seeking to shed away some fats.

What are Mushrooms for Weight Loss?

Mushrooms are both delicious and full of health benefits. They come as a perfect alternative to meat especially if you want to remove meat from your diet. Most people would go on a mushroom diet to replace meals that include meat.

A mushroom diet however doesn't mean eating mushrooms only. It means only replacing the meals that contain meat with mushrooms.

Benefits such as high water and fiber content make mushrooms an ideal option for a weight loss diet. They help you feel fuller and you can easily avoid eating too much food and adding lots of calories.

Plus, mushrooms can also be enjoyed in different ways including adding them to your breakfast, pairing them with your veggies, and also making soup out of them.

If you are looking for a new diet for weight loss, you can consider mushrooms. In this article, we get to discuss more on mushrooms and how they can help you to lose weight.

How Do Mushrooms For Weight Loss Work?

Mushrooms for weight loss have different mechanisms to help you lose weight. They tackle weight gain from various angles such as wild sugar cravings, a big appetite, and the calorie deposits in your body. Here's exactly how mushrooms for weight loss work;

Ms. Richa Anand, Dr., Chief Dietician Hiranandani Hospital says "Weight loss can be facilitated by mushrooms' nutritional distinctiveness and potential health benefits. With their inherent calorie and fat content, mushrooms have appeal for those looking to reduce their daily intake. The satisfaction of fullness these foods provide is thanks to their ample hydration and fiber content."

According to a review published in the Journal of Fungi by Changxia Yu et al., mushrooms are rich in fiber and water. Therefore, eating mushrooms will make you feel fuller thereby helping you reduce the number of calories you eat. When you feel full you might not see the need to keep eating as you will not feel any hunger. So it is safe to say that mushrooms deal with the aspect of calorie accumulation.

A study published in the National Library of Medicine by Thomas M Barber et al., also confirmed that dietary fiber can help improve metabolism. If your metabolism is healthy then it means your body will continue burning lots of calories too. So apart from feeling full fiber helps burn calories by improving metabolic health.

If you love a bigger plate but hate the calories that come with it then you can consider a big plate of mushrooms. They might be so nutritious but they are very low on calories.

According to a study on edible mushrooms published in the National Library of Medicine by Rachele De Cianni et al., Mushrooms are very low in calories so they are good for weight loss.

In a research study published in the Antioxidants journal by Jan Lazur et al., mushrooms such as lion's mane can help reduce depression and anxiety, especially in people suffering from obesity.

According to this study, the mushroom also helps to improve sleep. When you are in a good mood and you have slept well, exercising and taking care of your diet is much easier.

What are the Health Benefits of Mushrooms For Weight Loss?

Eating mushrooms or having a mushroom diet is super beneficial to your health. Mushrooms are not only delicious with tons of nutrients they are also great for losing weight. Apart from these mentioned advantages below are more of the benefits of mushrooms;

Notably Low in Calories

This is one of the best reasons why. mushrooms are good for weight loss. No matter how much of the mushrooms you take, you might not add excessive calories into your body. It is a great alternative to meat which has lots of calories.

"Mushrooms are low in calories and saturated fat and they add all these micronutrients, flavonols, and phytochemicals to your meal," says Katherine Brooking, a New York City-based registered dietitian.

Rich in Nutrients

The delicious fungi are rich in healthy nutrients. Some of these nutrients include Potassium, Protein, Selenium, Calcium, Zinc, and antioxidants among other nutrients. So, taking mushrooms as part of your weight loss diet means that you will be improving your overall health.

For instance, we know that antioxidants are great at fighting off free radicals that are super harmful to our bodies and inflammation.

Angela Lemond a registered dietician at the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics says, "Mushrooms are a great food to consume when you have minor inflammation, such as any injury, or if you have any autoimmune disorders such as multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis, or lupus."

Selenium is also a powerful nutrient found in mushrooms. According to a study published in the National Library of Medicine by Gemma Flores-Mateo et al., selenium may help to protect the body against heart problems which is also a factor affecting obese people.

Enhances Immunity

Having a strong immune system means that your weight loss journey will also be easier. Frequent illnesses such as colds could deter your weight loss.

Research published in the Integrative Medicine Journal by Alena G. Guggenheim et al., has found that mushrooms especially reishi and shiitake may strengthen your immunity. In addition, the plenty of nutrients that mushrooms offer help to strengthen immunity.

Low Carbohydrates

Mushrooms are an excellent choice for individuals following low-carbohydrate or ketogenic diets aimed at weight loss.

Most varieties of mushrooms are remarkably low in carbohydrates, which is a big consideration for those adhering to these types of dietary approaches.

The restricted intake of carbohydrates is a key principle of low-carb and ketogenic diets. It encourages the body to enter a metabolic state known as ketosis. This state allows your body to use ketones and fat as the key energy source.

"Mushrooms are good for you because of their many health benefits. They are low in calories, cholesterol, and sodium and are a good source of vitamins and minerals. They are a great addition to any diet," says Kosha Nathwani, a family medicine physician at Scripps Clinic Encinitas.

Mushrooms For Weight Loss Mushrooms For Weight Loss

What are the Types of Mushroom for Weight Loss?

Reishi Mushroom

Reishi mushrooms are a unique type of fungus that has gained attention for their potential benefits in supporting weight loss. These mushrooms are incredibly low on calories, with only around 50 calories per 100 grams. This makes them an excellent addition to any weight loss diet, as you can enjoy the mushrooms without significantly increasing your calorie intake.

These mushrooms are also a rich source of dietary fiber, which can help promote feelings of fullness and satisfaction.

Additionally, a research study published by Elif Ekiz et al., in the Foods Journal suggests that compounds found in reishi mushrooms, such as triterpenoids and polysaccharides may have the ability to boost metabolism and fat-burning, further supporting your weight loss efforts.

Shiitake

These mushrooms are native to East Asia and are either tan or dark brown. They grow up to 4 inches tall and grow on decaying hardwood trees.

According to the Food and Nutrition Sciences Journal published by Tiane Cristine Finimundy, these mushrooms contain sterols, lipids, polysaccharides, and terpenoids. These compounds are known to boost immunity and also reduce cholesterol levels. This therefore is one of the main reasons why you should consider this type of mushroom for weight loss.

Shiitake mushrooms are low in calories and high in dietary fiber, contributing to a greater sense of fullness. says, Dr. Mrinal Pandit, a registered dietitian, clinical nutritionist, and certified nutritional counselor at Oliva Skin and Hair Clinic

Lion’s Mane Mushrooms

They are known as lion's mane mushrooms because of their physical appearance. They are large and have a shaggy-looking appearance.

Like the rest of these mushrooms, lion's mane mushrooms also have many health benefits such as reducing inflammation, reducing the risks of heart problems, and regulating blood sugar levels.

A study on mice and rats that was published in the Mycobiology Journal by Won-Sik Choi, suggests that lion's mane mushroom reduces the risk of heart diseases by targeting some factors such as high cholesterol levels and high levels of triglycerides.

The mushroom therefore reduces the levels of triglycerides and enhances fat metabolism to lower cholesterol levels and aid in weight loss.

Cordyceps Mushrooms

They are a type of parasitic fungi that grows on insects living in the soil, especially caterpillars. They have been used for many years in traditional Chinese medicine for their numerous health benefits.

In terms of weight loss, a study published in the Molecules Journal by Syed Amir Ashraf concluded that cordyceps mushrooms energize you physically. This means that it is easier for one to live an active lifestyle that enables one to lose weight.

Maitake Mushrooms

These mushrooms resemble the feathers of a hen and are mostly found growing at the base of oak trees, especially in some parts of Asia and North America.

A mice study published on the Journal of Oleo Science by Mayumi Sato confirmed that indeed the Maitake mushroom may help in lowering cholesterol levels. The mushrooms also increase fatty acids in the body that provide energy to help you stay active.

Chaga Mushrooms

Chaga mushrooms are fascinating fungi that grow on birch trees in cold climates. They look like rough, black clumps and aren't eaten whole.

Instead, people use them to make tea by steeping the ground-up mushrooms in hot water. it contains fiber, which can keep you feeling fuller for longer and reduce cravings and therefore help with weight loss.

Turkey Tail Mushrooms

Turkey tail mushrooms are another interesting type of fungi with a feathery, brown appearance. They don't typically grace our dinner plates, but people often consume them in supplement form or as tea. These mushrooms have gained interest for their potential health benefits, including possibly aiding weight loss.

Similar to chaga mushrooms, turkey tail offers some properties that might be helpful for weight management. They contain beta-glucans, a type of fiber that can promote feelings of fullness and reduce snacking.

Additionally, some research suggests that beta-glucans in turkey tails may help regulate blood sugar and improve gut health, both of which can indirectly influence weight.

Mushrooms For Weight Loss Does mushroom reduce belly fat? Image/Shutterstock

Safety and Side Effects

Many wild mushrooms look very similar, but some can be deadly if eaten. Unless you're a trained expert, it's never safe to forage for wild mushrooms. Stick to cultivated varieties from reputable sources like grocery stores. Even edible mushrooms can cause side effects in some people. These can range from mild discomfort to more serious reactions. Some of these side effects include vomiting, nausea, diarrhea, and some allergic reactions such as itching.

"Broadly speaking, mushrooms are extremely safe, for the varieties that you find in your grocer. it’s recommended that you do not pick wild mushrooms unless you are an expert in the field. There are thousands of varieties of mushrooms, and some are poisonous,” says Brooking.

How Do I Take Mushrooms for Weight Loss?

  • Powder: If in powder form you can simply add the powder to hot drinks and enjoy. You can mix it with your smoothies or tea to make the powdered mushroom even better.
  • Capsules: Most manufacturers may recommend that you take only two capsules a day after meals.
  • Tincture: You can add the tincture mushroom into your tea, soups, tea, and other drinks and enjoy. You can also mix it with food and you can add it directly under your tongue for faster absorption.
  • Gummies: Gummies are super easy; you can simply chew two of the gummies every day.

FAQs

Can Mushrooms Help You Lose Weight?

Yes, they can help you lose weight because they may help to burn cholesterol and have dietary fiber that may make you feel fuller thus helping you avoid eating more calories and accumulating more unwanted weight.

How Much Mushroom is Safe to Take?

There isn't a recommended number of mushrooms specifically for weight loss. While some mushrooms are low-calorie and high in fiber, which can be helpful for weight loss, there's no magic bullet.

When is the Best Time to Take Mushrooms For Weight Loss Supplements?

Taking mushrooms before meals or including them in your breakfast can be a wise direction. They are rich in dietary fiber so it means you may feel fuller throughout your day thus successfully avoiding your cravings. Some mushrooms also enhance your energy. This means that taking them in the morning may help you feel energetic throughout your day.

Conclusion

Mushrooms have gradually become popular as edible and highly nutritious foods with fewer calories.

Currently, there are many forms of mushrooms that you can enjoy as supplements, either in capsule form, powdered form, or even mushroom gummies.

You can rake them in these forms but if you would like to change to a mushroom diet you can simply cook them and eat them along with other meals.

It is however good to note that mushrooms like other weight loss foods are not your magic shot at weight loss. You need to accompany mushrooms with exercise and healthy eating.

Sources:

  1. The Effect of Mushroom Dietary Fiber on the Gut Microbiota and Related Health Benefits: A Review https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC10608147/#:~:text=The%20use%20of%20mushroom%20dietary,industry%20and%20in%20drug%20development.
  2. The Health Benefits of Dietary Fibren https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/33096647/
  3. A systematic review on drivers influencing consumption of edible mushrooms and innovative mushroom-containing products https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/36623772/
  4. Discovering the Potential Mechanisms of Medicinal Mushrooms Antidepressant Activity: A Review https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC10044934/
  5. Selenium and coronary heart disease: a meta-analysis https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/17023702/
  6. Immune Modulation From Five Major Mushrooms: Application to Integrative Oncology https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4684115/
  7. Exploring the Potential Medicinal Benefits of Ganoderma lucidum: From Metabolic Disorders to Coronavirus Infections https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC10094145/
  8. A Review on General Nutritional Compounds and Pharmacological Properties of the Lentinula edodes Mushroom https://www.scirp.org/journal/PaperInformation?PaperID=47339
  9. Hypolipidaemic Effect of Hericium erinaceum Grown in Artemisia capillaris on Obese Rats https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3714447/
  10. Cordycepin for Health and Wellbeing: A Potent Bioactive Metabolite of an Entomopathogenic Medicinal Fungus Cordyceps with Its Nutraceutical and Therapeutic Potential https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7356751/
  11. Effect of Dietary Maitake (Grifola frondosa) Mushrooms on Plasma Cholesterol and Hepatic Gene Expression in Cholesterol-Fed Mice https://www.jstage.jst.go.jp/article/jos/62/12/62_1049/_article

Leave a comment

Please note, comments need to be approved before they are published.