One thing that separates shiitake from the other mushrooms we have recently explored on our blog (maitake and reishi) is how readily available shiitake mushrooms are. You can likely find them in your local supermarket next to all the other different varieties of mushrooms. If your supermarket is stocked with more than just the common portobello, button and oyster mushrooms then chances are you may also find shiitake displayed nearby. Believe it or not, shiitake mushrooms are in fact amongst the top five most common edible mushrooms that can be cooked up and included safely into your diet. Now, if you wanted to, you can safely consume cooked shiitake mushrooms quite frequently as they are considered very safe for consumption when portioned correctly. The majority of mushroom consumers are not always aware or focused on the potential health benefits that mushrooms, like shiitake, can offer but are more interested in their savoury taste and how easily they can be inclined to a meal for some much-needed flavour. Therefore, if your main intentions for consuming mushrooms regularly are less to do with medicinal benefits and more down to taste then a handful a day (when cooked and combined into a meal) is considered safe. Although if your intentions are more focused on their benefits then the same ‘rule’ still applies; you will not want to overconsume shiitake or any mushroom for that matter! That is what we aim to cover in today's post; why you should not over-consume shiitake as well as share how much shiitake is enough!
Can I eat shiitake mushrooms every day?
When cooked thoroughly, shiitake mushrooms are generally considered very safe for consumption but moderation is advised. You do not want to eat too many mushrooms as overconsuming them could in some cases cause diarrhoea as well as potentially trigger gastrointestinal discomfort. It’s recommended to stick to a 3-8 shiitake mushroom limit per day; just to be on the safe side and still be able to enjoy their bitter flavour and taste.
Can you eat too much shiitake?
During the introduction of this post, we mentioned how most individuals are not always focused or even consider shiitake mushrooms for their believed health benefits as they are more for enhancing flavour in meals etc. Now, we assume that if you are reading this post and the rest of our (medicinal) mushroom mini-series posts you are interested in shiitakes' medicinal benefits. If that is the case then the same serving suggestion applies; 3-8 per day is all you will need. It might be tempting to consume a higher amount of shiitake for more drastic health benefits but doing this puts you are risk of more potential side effects relating to overeating mushrooms. Heavily exceeding the recommended daily serving suggestions might appear to be ‘harmless’ but it could increase your chance of more severe stomach upset, gastrointestinal discomfort as well as vomiting in rare cases. Shiitake mushrooms are still full of many different compounds that might not be very agreeable for the stomach when consumed in large quantities too frequently. Therefore, as tempting as it may be to over-consume shiitake mushrooms on the notion they are safe (and to increase potential health benefits) is not encouraged or advised!
How much is too much shiitake?
We have referred to this twice throughout today's post, but to repeat, you should only consume between 3 to 8 shiitake mushrooms per day. Even the higher end of that (8 mushrooms) might be considered too much for you to have per portion, so if you prefer less than the recommended amount, that is also fine. Now that's not to say that if you accidentally cooked 9 or 10 instead of 8 that anything ‘bad’ would happen so long as it’s a one-off and not a common occurrence. Too much of any food can be difficult for your gut and stomach to process therefore it’s always advised to moderate your food; which also includes your shiitake mushrooms! So, to clarify, stick within the proposed limit to ensure that you can enjoy your shiitake mushrooms and still potentially benefit from their medicinal properties. Therefore, overconsuming the daily recommendation of shiitake mushrooms could lead to mild stomach upset and discomfort which would not be ideal!
What happens if I eat too much shiitake mushroom?
Now we have already mentioned during today's blog post the effects on the body should you overdo your daily mushroom portion; it can lead to several internal upsets. They could end up being very mild and cause no real harm, although side effects could be more severe depending on how much you have overeaten as well as how often you are eating too many! Please see the list below for more information on possible side effects that can occur should you eat too many shiitake mushrooms. Common and potential side effects of eating too much shiitake mushroom:
- Mild stomach upset can be common with overeating any common (cooked) mushroom
- Diarrhoea can also occur if you overeat cooked shiitake - just like overeating any food
- Vomiting in more severe cases especially if mushrooms are undercooked or highly potent
- If you are allergic to mushrooms then consuming ANY could bring on an allergic reaction
- An allergic reaction could affect your breathing and heart rate and even cause facial swelling
- Exceeding daily serving suggestions regularly can lead to a blood abnormality which can affect the increase of the number of white blood cells; happens as a result of a gastrointestinal symptom caused by overeating shiitake regularly!
- Shiitake is highly advised to only be eaten cooked and as part of a meal as opposed to supplements which can be ‘easily consumed thus increasing our skin’s sensitivity to light exposure.
Other than mild stomach upset and allergic reactions, if you are allergic to mushrooms, the other potential side effects of eating cooked shiitake are rare. However, they should all still be taken seriously as it’s never advised to overeat anything that has the potential to harm you even if it is ‘just shiitake mushrooms’.That's it for today's post, once again we have followed on from our previous post that focused on the Shiitake mushroom! We hope you find these posts helpful if you are thinking of adding more shiitake mushrooms (or similar types) to your daily diet. If you still have a few questions, after reading today's post, then check out other Health Insider Blog posts for more information or you can send our team a DM on Instagram who will handle your request!