Daily Express UK front page headline story
Eat mushrooms to fight dementia: Superfood could stop disease by boosting nerves in brain
EATING plenty of mushrooms could help stave off dementia, according to new research
The humble fungi contain chemicals that boost nerves in the brain by preventing inflammation.
A study of eleven types of mushrooms – some already used for medicinal purposes – found they increased grey matter by raising production of a chemical called NGF (nerve growth factor (NGF).
The findings published in the Journal of Medicinal Food, suggest mushrooms are a potential ‘superfood’ which could reduce or delay development of dementia.
Researchers reviewed the scientific evidence with regard to their anti-Alzheimer’s effects and found “they may fulfill a preventive function against the development of Alzheimer’s disease.”
Professor Vikineswary Sabaratnam, of Malaya University in Kuala Lumpur, said: “Regular consumption of the mushrooms may reduce or delay development of age-related neuro-degeneration.
“However, extensive animal and human clinical trials are warranted, which may then lead to designing functional food or novel therapeutic drugs to prevent or mitigate the effects of neuro-degenerative diseases.”
The researchers said experiments on rodents and humans had found a “number of edible mushrooms” have been shown to contain rare and exotic compounds that are good for the brain.
One H. erinaceus – commonly known as the lion’s mane mushroom – was found to improve mild cognitive imp[airment – a form of memory loss that can lead to dementia in 50 to 80 year-olds.
Another D. indusiata – dubbed ‘Queen of the Mushrooms’ – increased NGF in rats’ neurons while C. militaris – or the ‘caterpillar fungus’ – improved lab rodents’ memory for getting round a water maze.