Oyster Mushrooms & Diabetes Management

Can mushrooms help manage diabetes and cholesterol? Oyster mushrooms (Pleurotus ostreatus) exhibit a variety of medicinal properties, one being the ability to regulate blood sugar and cholesterol, as well as supporting Type II Diabetes management. There are plenty of studies in-vitro and on mice that prove oyster mushrooms’ efficacy; here we’re reviewing the studies in human (in-vivo) trials.

3 Studies Proving the Efficacy of Oyster Mushrooms to Manage Diabetes and Cholesterol

Study One: Oyster Mushrooms Reduces Blood Glucose and Cholesterol in Diabetic Subjects
This clinical study was conducted in BIRDEM hospital from July 2005 until January 2006. The primary aim behind this study was to investigate the effect of reducing blood cholesterol and glucose after consuming mushrooms. The study was also used to address the possible impact mushrooms could have on hepatic and renal toxicity.

The study was designed with patients consuming mushrooms every day for a week, then no mushroom for the following week, ending with an entire week of mushrooms for seven days again. All thirty patients' vitals, blood glucose, and cholesterol were recorded before proceeding. The mean age of the participants was 46.3 years.

The study results showed reduced blood plasma (FPG & 2-hPG, p<0.001) along with total blood cholesterol and LDL. No significant change was observed in weight and HDL levels. The study concluded that there was a noticeable change in overall blood pressure, blood cholesterol, glucose, and TG levels. It was also stated that there were no known damaging effects on the kidney or liver.


Study 2: Consuming Oyster Mushrooms Reduces Fasting and Post-Meal Blood Sugar in Diabetic Subjects
This study was conducted in 2007 to investigate the efficacy of consuming P. ostreatus, an edible oyster mushroom rich beta-glucans, on glucose and lipid metabolism, blood pressure, net body weight, and appetite. The study focused on exploring the cardiometabolic effects on patients after eating oyster mushrooms.

30 hospitalized patients with type 2 diabetes were asked to consume 150 grams of cooked oyster mushrooms daily for a week, followed by one week without consuming any. On average, blood sugar dropped by 22% and post-meal blood sugar by 23% when mushrooms were consumed for a week; however, fasting and post-meal blood sugar increased by an average of 13% and 20%, respectively, when no mushrooms were eaten.

A total of 8 trials were done to investigate effects on glucose metabolism, which showed a significant reduction in fasting and postprandial glucose post 2 hours. Lipid metabolism was also reduced in terms of total blood cholesterol and LDL cholesterol. Despite the study showing reductions in blood pressure, there was no change in body weight, and appetite sensations were not assessed either. Although many participants showed significant signs of improved cardiometabolic health, the evidence was insufficient to declare a solid claim.

Study 3: Consuming Oyster Mushrooms Reduces Cholesterol
Elevated cholesterol and triacylglycerol levels are known risk factors for cardiovascular diseases. Several animal studies have indicated that oyster mushrooms can positively influence the lipid profile. This study was conducted to help investigate the influence of P. ostreatus intake in diabetic and cardiovascular patients.

The study included 20 subjects, with 11 females and 9 males aged between 20 to 34 years. Before starting the study, the initial blood lipid profile and LDL concentrations were recorded. The subjects were asked to consume either a soup portion containing 30 grams of dried oyster mushrooms or a tomato soup for placebo effect for 21 days straight.

After 21 days, the triacylglycerol concentrations had greatly reduced in the oyster mushroom soup group to −0.44 mmol/L; p = 0.015) while the LDL level were also oxidized to −7.2 U/mL; p = 0.013. These significant reductions resulted in low blood cholesterol overall. There were no known effects on the LDL or HDL levels. In conclusion, the research highlighted and interlinked the effectiveness of oyster mushrooms on blood cholesterol levels with their nutrient composition.

Conclusion
Oyster mushrooms are high in linoleic acid, ergosterol, and ergosta-derivatives, which show oxygen radical absorbance capacity and cyclooxygenase inhibition assays in vitro. From the above-conducted studies, the intake of oyster mushrooms is quite beneficial for patients with diabetes type II and other cardiovascular diseases. The fact that this edible mushroom variety can provide individuals with various health benefits has made them a popular functional food.

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