Shiitake Mushrooms Improve The Skin Elasticity

Used in Asian cultures for thousands of years, shiitake mushrooms can be eaten or used topically for beautiful skin and to prevent premature aging.

Shiitake mushrooms are packed full of nutrition for skin health. They are rich in protein (18%), fats, polysaccharides, lignans, vitamins, minerals, and soluble fiber. Shiitake contains all eight essential amino acids in well-balanced proportions as well as a good blend of vitamins and minerals including vitamins A, B, B12, C, D potasium, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, zinc and niacin. Lentinan (LTN), an immunostimulant found in shiitakes, is responsible for many of it's legendary health benefits.

L-ergothioneine, a powerful antioxidant, has been discovered in shiitake mushrooms. The good part is that it does not get destroyed when mushrooms are cooked.

L-ergothioneine helps prevent cell breakdown and increases elasticity of the skin. Additionally, shiitake mushrooms are a rich source of kojic acid, a natural skin lightener and alternative to the chemical hydroquinone, helping to brighten skin and fade sunspots and acne scars. Hence, you'll often find this mushroom variety in skincare products — particularly those with antiaging benefits. 

Redbook Magazine, January 2003, reported that cosmetic companies are making skin creams using shiitake mushrooms because of the shiitake's kojic acid content, which can greatly improve the appearance of the skin. Kojic acid, according to Natural-skin-care specialist Nora Traviss, "prevents the formation of melanin, or pigment, in skin, resulting in a brighter, more even complexion." In addition, kojic acid has an astringent quality that temporarily tightens the skin and makes it taut. Manufacturers of shiitake skin creams include BeComing, SCO, Aveeno and Chanel.

Shiitakes also help exfoliate, minimize inflammation of the skin and provide protection against the skin-damaging free radicals that are generated by sun exposure, pollution, cigarette smoke and other environmental assaults.

The benefits of shiitake to the skin are from both eating them and applying them topically. Keep in mind that eating more than 15-20 grams of shiitakes a day can cause a rash and stomach upset.

Aveeno has a anti-aging line out with shiitake mushroom as it's main ingredient. Check it out at Amazon.

Did you know?
Sun drying increases the vitamin D content of the mushrooms. Regular dried shiitake contain 105 IU of Vitamin D per 15 gram serving, or 25% of the Reference Daily Intake (RDI). 

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