White jelly mushroom: Health benefits and Side effects

Edited By: Dr. Asha Jyoti Bharati 

15 seconds White jelly mushroom summary

White jelly mushrooms are used in Chinese medicine. It is gelatinous in shape with white or light color.

Health Benefits

  1. Lowers cholesterol: White jelly mushrooms lowers the cholesterol level. Thus reduce the risk of heart disease.
  2. Reduce fatigue: Relief the muscle fatigues. White jelly mushrooms have proteins and antioxidant acts as an energizer for the body.
  3. Lose weight: Protein and polysaccharides act as an anti-obese compound.
  4. Treats Alzheimer’s: Good for persons having Alzheimer’s, as is rich in antioxidants.
  5. Manage diabetes: It reduces plasma glucose level upto 52%.

Other health benefits are anti-inflammatory, radioprotective, antitumor and provide glowing skin.

Side effects

Always consume fresh mushrooms as they are very prone to mold contamination.

 

White jelly mushroom (Tremella fuciformis Berk of family Tremellaceae) is an edible mushroom. This mushroom is most popular, the nutritious mushroom also used as a tonic in China and Southeast Asia. Other common names of white jelly mushroom are snow fungus, white wood ear, silver ear mushroom, jamur kuping putih, snow ear, and white auricularia. This mushroom was originated in Brazil. 

White jelly mushroom is used in traditional Chinese medicine for centuries due to its nutritious and enticing flavors.  This mushroom grows widely on dead branches of broadleaf trees in the tropical areas. It formed shapeless, gelatinous fruit bodies with white and light yellow color (1). 

Nutritional value of White jelly mushroom

White jelly mushroom is also known for its health and medicinal value especially high content of protein polysaccharides, carbohydrates, glycoproteins, ergosterol, fatty acids, and dietary fiber. 

It also contains a variety of minerals, trace elements and vitamins with a lower amount of energy and lipid (2).

Health benefits of White jelly mushroom

White jelly mushroom exhibits various biological functions, including anti-tumor, immunomodulatory, antioxidation, anti-aging, repairing brain memory impairment, anti-inflammatory, hypoglycemic and hypocholesterolemic effects (2).

1. White jelly mushrooms help in lowering the cholesterol level

White jelly mushroom contain 6.2% soluble dietary fiber and 57.3% insoluble dietary fiber which decrease blood cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, triglycerides. It also increases the fecal neutral steroids, total bile acids excretion and short chain fatty acid production. 

Therefore, intake of snow ear mushroom may be beneficial in reducing the cholesterol levels on the hypocholesterolemic patient and reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease (3).

2. Eating white jelly mushrooms energize the body by treating fatigue

Fatigue is a symptom of tiredness caused by stresses (physical and/or psychological). Polysaccharides and other antioxidants found in snow ear mushroom can help to prolong the time for skeletal muscles to become fatigued. It promotes protein and RNA synthesis, which helps to maintain the normal function of the liver and avoid fatigue. Therefore consumption of white jelly mushroom improves muscle function and treats fatigue (4).

3. Anti inflammatory properties of white jelly mushrooms

Presence of polysaccharides and other bioactive compounds such as gentisic acid, protocatechuic acid, 4-hydroxybenzoic acid, and coumaric acid in the white jelly mushroom act as potent anti-inflammatory agents (5,6).

4. Anti obesity properties of white jelly mushroom

Polysaccharide obtained from white jelly mushroom has a high nutritious value which prevents excessive body weight gain and variation in adipocytes (7).

5. Manage diabetes

White jelly mushroom polysaccharide (glucuronoxylomannan) helps in reducing plasma glucose levels (52%). Increase glucose disposal, improving glucose tolerance and systemic insulin sensitivity without affecting body weight. 

Thus, snow fungus acts as potential oral hypoglycemic agents or functional foods for the management of non-insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (8).

6. Antioxidant properties of white jelly mushroom

White jelly mushroom contains polysaccharides, phenolic acids (benzoic acid, gentisic acid coumaric acid) and flavonoid which posses the strongest antioxidant activity. It degrades free radicals and protects the body from various chronic diseases (9,10).

7. White jelly mushrooms are radioprotective in nature

White jelly mushroom is a good source of polysaccharide known as WTF-B. It restores hemoglobin, WBC and RBC counts and showed 50% survival post-irradiation. Thus polysaccharide from snow fungus possesses the desirable properties of an ideal radioprotector from harmful radiation (gamma irradiation) (11).

8. Healthy glowing skin by eating white jelly mushrooms

Polysaccharide has excellent antioxidative and cell protective properties.  It reduces skin fibroblast injury by increasing the synthesis of type I procollagen (12). 

It also protects against wrinkles hence white jelly mushroom can improve the skin texture, lower the skin harshness and can be used as a cosmetic candidate for skin whitening and treating skin injury upon aging (13).

9. Preserve the tenderness of the meat

White jelly mushroom addition in pork patties preserves the moisture and fat content. Therefore, the oil holding capacity of mushroom has a positive effect on cooking yield of the patty as well as sensory affection (14).

10. Treat Alzheimer’s disease

White jelly mushroom has polysaccharide which prevents and treats neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s. As it enhances neurite outgrowth, which was induced by the nerve growth factor, reduced the neurotoxic effect and inhibit reactive oxygen species accumulation (15).

11. Antitumor and immunomodulatory properties of white jelly mushrooms

White jelly mushroom exerts anti-tumor activity by promoting the host’s natural immune defenses. It can stabilize WBC levels during treatment of tumors, increased natural killer cell activity and can enable patients to rebuild their own immune system improving their cancer resistance (16).

12. Repair impaired cognitive

Intake of white jelly mushroom (100 or 400 mg/kg) is beneficial to improve the function of impaired cognitive processes by increasing the central cholinergic activity.

Side effects of White jelly mushroom

White jelly mushroom is infected by white mold (mycoparasite) and 10% of the mushrooms were affected not fit for consumption due to contamination. Therefore, before the intake of white jelly mushroom precaution should be needed.

References

  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3763079/
  2. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S014181301834087X?via%3Dihub
  3. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12452672
  4.  https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5584359
  5. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5954968/
  6. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27334265
  7. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6278646/
  8. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/174575
  9. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25129784
  10. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/1750-3841.12393
  11. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/2273900
  12. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5561887/
  13. http://www.koreascience.or.kr/article/JAKO201608450940064.page
  14. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/jfpp.12178
  15. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27035561
  16. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26621447
  17. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17409507
  18. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/30173629

 

 

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