3 Best Mushrooms to Prevent Cancer (& how to prepare them)
In this nutrition bite we take a quick look at nutritional benefits of mushrooms and why they’re an especially fantastic addition to an anti-cancer lifestyle.
Mushrooms And Cancer
Mushrooms are antioxidant powerhouses. These incredible compounds neutralize cancer-causing f.ree radicals in our bodies, making them harmless. When it comes to antioxidants from foods, like the ones you find in mushrooms, more is more!
And lucky for us, there are over 600 known edible mushrooms to consume!
Research on over 2,000 women who consumed a third of an ounce of mushrooms daily reduced their breast cancer risk by 64%! . Another study found that just consuming one mushroom per day reduced risk of dying from any disease by 95%. 
Cancer can be a scary disease, but only a small percentage of cases are from genetic mutations, while a whopping 90% of cases are due to lifestyle factors. That means most cancers are preventable!
Although mushrooms aren’t a magic bullet to preventing all cancer, they sure are a delicious addition to a holistic approach to keeping the disease at bay.
3 Mushrooms You Should Have In Your Diet To Prevent Cancer
1. Reishi Mushrooms
Reshi is the most commonly used mushroom for cancer prevention and is especially popular in traditional Chinese medicine as part of treatment for cancer patients.
This fan-shaped mushroom, ranging from orange to red in color, is somewhat bitter in flavor. Considering its immune-boosting and tumor-inhibiting benefits  thanks to a high Vitamin D content (a nutrient needed for healthy immune function and the formation of white blood cells), Reishi mushrooms were practically designed to prevent AND treat cancer.
2. Maitake Mushrooms
If you’re walking in the woods and come across any oak, elm or maple trees, take a look at their base for a cluster of light-brown to grey mushrooms. This is where you’ll find Maitake mushrooms.
Fondly called ‘The King of Mushrooms’, Maitake mushrooms are rich in cancer-killing and immune-boosting beta-glucans . Beta-glucans also help keep your heart healthy and your gut clean, making Maitake mushrooms great for an overall health boost!
3. Cordyceps Mushrooms
Cordyceps mushrooms have the spectacular ability to prolong the life of white blood cells, the very cells you need to fight cancer. As if that wasn’t enough reason to add these mushrooms to your anti-cancer diet, these long, finger-like mushrooms also have anti-tumor properties, and protect your kidneys from the ill-effects of chemotherapy .
How To Prepare Your Mushrooms
One of the many wonderful things about mushrooms is that they’re delicious! They can truly elevate a dish, as well as stand well on their own, and often need little help in the flavor department.
Note that before you cook your mushrooms, clean them with a soft bristle brush or wipe them down with a damp cloth. Do not wash your mushrooms directly with water as they will absorb the water and be hard to work with. Once your mushrooms are clean, give them a little love, herbs and salt, and you’re one your way to a nutritious meal.
Here are some ways you can prepare mushrooms that would be tasty on toasts, pizzas, pastas, soups, and anything else you can think of!
Sauteeing mushrooms in a little coconut or olive oil is one of the easiest ways to prepare them. Once the oil is absorbed, you can add your choice of herbs and seasonings, then slowly add splashes of water to soften them up to your liking.
If you don’t want to watch your mushrooms on a pan, you can pop them in a preheated oven (180C, or 350F is ideal) for about 15 minutes and call it a day. Simply chop up your mushrooms in similar sizes, drizzle a bit of olive oil, herbs and salt, and let the oven do the work till they turn into chewy yet crispy bites of goodness.
To appreciate the full flavor of your mushrooms, simply steam them. We don’t recommend boiling, as nutrients are lost to the water. Place them on a steaming basket in a pot of shallow water, cover with a lid, and steam until soft. You can eat them as is or toss them in a dressing or sauce of your choice, such as an herby pesto or zesty chimichurri.