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Top 4 Adverse Effects Of Shiitake Mushrooms

This important Asian staple can have some adverse effects on your health.

Top 4 Adverse Effects Of Shiitake Mushrooms

Shiitake mushrooms are an edible fungus which is native to Asia


  1. Shiitake mushrooms are an edible fungus, native to Asia
  2. Shiitake mushrooms in large quantities can disturb your digestive system
  3. Shiitake mushroom intake can lead to dermatitis and photosensitivity

Shiitake mushrooms are an edible fungus which is native to Asia. This mushroom is consumed in a number of forms, whole, powdered, supplement, raw or cooked. Irrespective of its form, this edible fungus is very healthy and has been used as a natural remedy for a number of ailments. Nevertheless, this important Asian staple can have some adverse effects on your health. If you decide to take these mushrooms, in any particular form, in large quantities, check with your doctor first.

Nutritionist Pooja Malhotra says, "Shiitake mushroom is a type of edible fungus, it is consumed worldwide raw, cooked or in supplement form. Normal quantities consumed as a part of a meal are usually well accepted. It is also used a herbal remedy for some ailments, though its benefits in reducing cholesterol are not fully established."

"Consuming large quantities can cause several adverse effects, the commonest of which are digestive problems like nausea, stomach cramps, vomiting etc," she added. 

Here's a list of the top 4 adverse effects of shiitake mushrooms on your health.

1. Digestive problems

Though they are generally safe, consuming shiitake mushrooms in large quantities could disturb your digestive system. This happens because your body fails to process large quantities of mushroom in one go. The symptoms include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, bloating and stomach upset. Stick to a limited consumption of these mushrooms at a time.

digestive system

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2. Allergic reactions

Some people can be allergic to these mushrooms. An allergic reaction could affect your skin, nose, lungs or throat. Symptoms include hives, difficulty in breathing, elevated heart rate, swelling in neck, face, and throat. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms after consuming shiitake mushrooms, seek medical support immediately.

"Shiitake mushrooms can also cause an allergic reaction in some people such as swelling of the face, neck, lips, hives, difficulty in breathing, and an increase in heart rate," says Pooja. 

skin allergy

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3. Blood abnormality

A study published in the "Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology" stated that daily intake of over 4 grams of shiitake mushrooms for a period of 10 weeks can lead to a blood abnormality known as eosinophilia. This condition involves an abnormal increase in the number of one type of white blood cells. This happens as a result of a gastrointestinal symptom of shiitake mushroom consumption.

red and white blood cells full
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4. Skin reactions

An article published in the journal "Dermatology" states that although rare, shiitake mushroom intake can lead to dermatitis and photosensitivity. Excess consumption of these mushrooms can lead to skin lesions which is a form of dermatitis in Japan. This can worsen due to sunlight exposure. 

Pooja concluded by saying, "Shiitake mushrooms are safe to be consumed as a part of a meal if a person is not allergic. However, using it as a supplement is not recommended."

skin irritation

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(Pooja Malhotra is a city-based Nutritionist)

Disclaimer: This content including advice provides generic information only. It is in no way a substitute for qualified medical opinion. Always consult a specialist or your own doctor for more information. NDTV does not claim responsibility for this information.


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