In the not too distant past, coffee was not considered a “health drink.” During the last 100 years or so, it has been blamed for everything from stunting growth to causing heart attacks and cancer. Studies performed in the last decade, however, have debunked a lot of these negative associations and have demonstrated a growing number of potential health benefits of coffee, such as anticarcinogenic and antimutagenic activity due to beneficial compounds like chlorogenic acids and polyphenols. We now know that coffee, especially dark roast, is incredibly rich in powerful antioxidants – just as high, or higher, than more well-known antioxidant sources like tea, cocoa, and red wine. When you add functional mushrooms to create mushroom coffee, those antioxidant levels are ratcheted up even higher.
While coffee has found a favorable standing when it comes to health (especially clean, toxin-free coffee), there are some folks who do experience some negative reactions when drinking their morning cup of joe. Common side effects can include issues such as insomnia, restlessness, irritability, and an upset stomach in susceptible individuals. Deeper concerns stemming from coffee consumption can include raised serum homocysteine and cholesterol levels, which could have a negative impact on cardiovascular health.
Fortunately, if you are vulnerable to the negative side effects from drinking coffee, adding functional mushrooms may allow you to keep getting your java fix, reap the myriad health benefits of coffee, and mitigate any potential drawbacks.
Top 4 Benefits of Mushroom Coffee
Functional mushrooms help support healthy digestion.
The health of your gut has a huge impact on your overall health and your susceptibility to disease. It’s vital that you keep this system functioning optimally by managing stress, eating slowly, and regularly including fermented foods in your diet. Maintaining a healthy microbial balance is key in maintaining a healthy digestive system. Mushrooms, rich in prebiotics such as non-digestible polysaccharides, help support the health and proliferation of “good” bacteria, while inhibiting the growth of “bad bugs” in your gut.
Less caffeine and help fighting stress.
A typical cup of regular coffee has about 100mg of caffeine. You’ll only get about half that in a cup of mushroom coffee. Functional mushrooms also possess adaptogenic qualities, supporting your adrenals as well as your nervous, endocrine, and immune systems. Lower caffeine levels, plus the support in adapting to stress, equals a chance to enjoy the health benefits of mushroom coffee without the jitteriness or irritability.
Antioxidants, antioxidants, antioxidants.
Decaf and regular coffee are both a rich source of disease-fighting antioxidants that can help reduce inflammation and reduce your risk of many diseases. Mushrooms also possess significant antioxidant properties thanks to high levels of polyphenols, polysaccharides, vitamins, carotenoids, and minerals. The combination of coffee and mushrooms creates a powerful, nutrient-dense start to your day that is unrivaled by other popular sources of antioxidants like tea.
It tastes great.
While you might question how tasty putting mushrooms in your coffee can actually be, I can tell you that it’s a delicious pairing. All of the medicinal mushroom varieties that are commonly combined with coffee compliment the bitter flavor extremely well. For example, Chaga has a flavor very reminiscent of coffee while cordyceps and lion’s mane both have a nutty-earthy flavor that pairs very well with coffee.
Pay attention and go organic!
Contamination of heavy metals and other compounds is possible, so be sure to look for a mushroom product from a reputable company that performs regular testing. To ensure you’re getting the best quality possible, it’s also vital to only use organic mushrooms as pesticide residue can be found on conventionally grown mushrooms.
Trading in your regular cup of joe and starting your day with a mushroom coffee is a great (and tasty!) way to boost your intake of dietary antioxidants while minimizing the negative side effects commonly associated with one of the world’s most popular beverages.
Interested in mushroom coffee? Check out Four Sigmatic. They source the world’s best ingredients and work with 3rd party testers to ensure purity levels. Four Sigmatic offers a range of mushroom-coffee options—from cordyceps and Chaga for smooth energy without jitters; tulsi and ashwagandha for balance and recovery; or Chaga with lion’s mane for a nootropic brain boost.
Like this? Please share.
Sunitha Elizabeth George, Kulathooran Ramalakshmi & Lingamallu Jagan Mohan Rao (2008) A Perception on Health Benefits of Coffee, Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition, 48:5, 464-486, DOI: 10.1080/10408390701522445
Büşra Başar Gökcen & Nevin Şanlier (2019) Coffee consumption and disease correlations, Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition, 59:2, 336-348, DOI: 10.1080/10408398.2017.1369391
Yashin A, Yashin Y, Wang JY, Nemzer B. Antioxidant and Antiradical Activity of Coffee. Antioxidants (Basel). 2013;2(4):230–245. Published 2013 Oct 15. doi:10.3390/antiox2040230
Jayachandran M, Xiao J, Xu B. A Critical Review on Health Promoting Benefits of Edible Mushrooms through Gut Microbiota. Int J Mol Sci. 2017;18(9):1934. Published 2017 Sep 8. doi:10.3390/ijms18091934
M. Kozarski, A. Klaus, D. Jakovljevic, N. Todorovic, J. Vunduk, P. Petrović, et al.Antioxidants of edible mushrooms, Molecules, 20 (2015), pp. 19489-19525. doi:10.3390/molecules201019489