Can I Eat Mushrooms When Pregnant? Answers to all Related Questions

It’s common for pregnant women to ask, “Can I eat mushrooms when pregnant?” Mushrooms are an adaptable addition to many recipes, including salads, soups, and pizzas, and may be cooked in a variety of ways to create savoury and healthful meals. But you may wonder whether eating mushrooms is safe for you and your unborn child. Mushrooms are a great source of protein and have few calories when gathered fresh. To reduce the likelihood of toxicity, however, it is important to correctly identify them. This article discusses the pros of eating mushrooms during pregnancy, including which varieties are safe to consume and which should be avoided. 

Benefits of Eating Mushrooms During Pregnancy

Mushrooms are a great source of antioxidants, vitamins, and iron. Here’re just a few benefits of consuming them during pregnancy:-

Rich in Nutrients

Mushrooms are an excellent source of nutrients, including vitamin D, B vitamins, copper, selenium, and potassium. These nutrients are essential for healthy fetal development and can help support the health of the mother during pregnancy. Additionally, mushrooms are low in fat, cholesterol-free, and a good source of dietary fibre.

Immune System Support

During pregnancy, a woman’s immune system undergoes changes to support the developing fetus. Eating mushrooms can help support the immune system due to their beta-glucans and polysaccharides content. These compounds are believed to stimulate the immune system and protect against infections.

Helps Manage Blood Sugar Levels

Pregnancy can cause fluctuations in blood sugar levels due to changes in hormones and increased insulin resistance. Mushrooms are a low-glycemic food that can help stabilize blood sugar levels and prevent gestational diabetes.

Good Source of Protein

Mushroom is a good source of plant-based protein, which is important for fetal growth and development. Protein is also important for the mother’s body to maintain muscle mass and support the growth of the placenta.

Supports Digestive Health

Pregnancy can cause constipation and other digestive issues due to hormonal changes and the pressure of the growing fetus on the digestive system. Mushrooms are a good source of dietary fibre, which can help promote regular bowel movements and prevent constipation.

Types of Mushrooms to Eat During Pregnancy

It’s vital to choose the safest kind of mushrooms even though they are typically regarded as safe to consume while pregnant. 

Culinary Mushrooms

The majority of edible mushrooms, including shiitake, portobello, oyster, maitake, chestnut, crimini, and white button mushrooms, are safe to eat. According to research done on pregnant rats, eating shiitake mushrooms helped the mother’s triglyceride levels while having no effect on the fetus’s growth. A second research of 1,162 pregnant women revealed that eating 100 grams of white button mushrooms every day from before becoming pregnant until 20 weeks pregnant decreased high blood pressure and the chances of getting preeclampsia and gestational diabetes.

Medicinal Mushrooms

Also, it’s typically okay to eat Cordyceps, Reishi, Chaga, Turkey Tail, and other therapeutic mushrooms. They might boost immunity in the general population, lower blood cholesterol, and have anti-ulcer capabilities. There is enough research on Chaga mushroom benefits for overall human health, pregnancy-related research, however, is few. Their safety during pregnancy requires more study. 

Types of Mushrooms to Avoid While Pregnant

As a general precaution, pregnant women should avoid consuming wild mushrooms, as it can be difficult to identify all the different types and some species can be toxic. Additionally, certain species of mushrooms have been identified as potentially harmful to pregnant women, including Amanita phalloides (also known as the death cap), Amanita muscaria (fly agaric), and Gyromitra esculenta (false morel). These mushrooms contain toxins that can cause serious health complications and even be fatal. 

Final Words

It’s important to exercise caution and always consult your healthcare provider that “can I eat mushrooms when pregnant” before consuming any type of mushroom. It becomes vital especially when you have a compromised immune system.