We know vitamin D is essential for strong muscles and healthy bones. However, we may need to find out that the vitamin also helps modulate the immune system to help fight infections like the flu.
Mushrooms are the only vegetable that has vitamin D naturally. So now, instead of reading the nutritional panel and trying to find fresh mushrooms with vitamin D, a more convenient way to incorporate this nutrient is mushroom powders.
Medicinal mushrooms like Maitake, Lion's mane, Reishi, Chaga, Turkey tail, and Cordyceps contain significant amounts of vitamin D. Taking supplements such as powders can help you get vitamin D along with their added health benefits.
Let’s examine mushroom powder vitamin D and which is your best pick.
Vitamin D from Mushrooms
Vitamin D comes from the sun, but with our busy lifestyle, we hardly have the time to see the daylight, forget sunbathing. You can pop a pill, but some people choose to get their vitamin D through diet rather than taking supplements. However, only some foods, including mushrooms, actually contain this nutrient.
Not all mushrooms have the same vitamin D content. For example, wild-harvested mushrooms or commercially grown mushrooms exposed to sunlight or UV rays contain significant amounts of the nutrient. So, vitamin D mushroom powder levels depend on the intensity and length of exposure to ultraviolet (UV) light.
Ergosterol, a type of plant sterol present in cultivated mushrooms and comparable to human cholesterol, is a precursor to vitamin D2. When exposed to ultraviolet light, fresh mushrooms are stimulated to interact with vitamin D2, which can come from both natural and artificial sources.
Even when grown in lit environments, not just any type of light will cause mushroom tissue to produce vitamin D. Only a select few mushroom growers use ultraviolet light, which results in the production of mushrooms that are high in vitamin D.
Best Vitamin D Mushroom Supplement
What are the high vitamin D mushroom powders, you may ask? Lion’s mane, Maitake, Reishi, Turkey tail, Cordyceps, and Chaga are functional fungi with decent amounts.
When exposed to UV light, these mushrooms convert provitamin D2 into previtamin D2. Similar to how previtamin D3 isomerizes to vitamin D3 in human skin, previtamin D2 forms quickly.
Any type of mushroom(1) can increase its vitamin D2 levels by being exposed to pulsed UV light, according to one study. With each additional pulse, the mushrooms' exposure to ultraviolet radiation increased, supplying more energy for the production of vitamin D2.
Recent research indicates that vitamin D2(2) is equally as effective as vitamin D3 at preserving levels of 25-hydroxyvitamin D in the blood. In addition, more investigation has revealed that chemical extracts taken as supplements and naturally occurring forms of vitamin D2 added to food are equally bioavailable.
In a study(3) conducted in Europe, the experimental group received 200 grams of soup containing irradiated mushrooms as their vitamin D source. A group that received identical doses of a D2 supplement was also tested, along with a group that received non-irradiated mushrooms as a placebo. The results again showed mushrooms' ability to gradually raise serum vitamin D levels in the body following vitamin D2 supplementation.
Why Choose Mushrooms For Vitamin D?
The great thing about medicinal mushrooms is they support vitamin D synthesis and are excellent immune system boosters. In addition, they support immunity, enhance host immune defense, and encourage a healthy inflammatory response.
You can conveniently add the nutrients in functional mushrooms to your healthy routine by using mushroom powder. In addition, a high-quality mushroom powder is nutrient-rich. It is one of the simplest ways to increase daily superfood intake, essential for boosting immunity.
The best mushroom vitamin D supplements are:
- Maitake (Grifola frondosa)
- Lion's mane (Hericium erinaceus)
- Reishi (Ganoderma lucidum
- Turkey tail (Trametes versicolor)
- Chaga (Inonotus obliquus)
- Cordyceps sinensis and Cordyceps militaris
These superfoods have high vitamin and mineral content that can support the health of your body. Mushroom superfoods can also help manage weight, support heart health, and even slow the signs of aging when they are included in a balanced diet.
What Are The Benefits Of Taking Mushroom Powder?
Mushroom powders contain a wealth of essential nutrients and bioactive compounds that fight inflammation and oxidative stress, lower blood sugar, cholesterol, and pressure levels, and provide vitamins and minerals. Some mushrooms also contain vitamin D to support bone and immune health.
How Can I Increase My Vitamin D Levels Quickly?
Spending time in the sunlight, consuming fatty fish, and eating more mushrooms are effective ways to get vitamin D. You can even take a supplement (like those with medicinal mushrooms to raise your vitamin D levels.
Does Lion's Mane Have Vitamin D?
Wild-harvested Lion’s mane mushrooms contain vitamin D along with other essential nutrients. Commercially grown Lion’s mane, exposed to UV rays, can also have the vitamin.
There are many benefits to consuming functional fungi supplements. Besides mushroom powder vitamin D, they contain polysaccharides, beta-glucans, dietary fibers, antioxidants, triterpenes, and minerals. When blended into a powdered mushroom superfood, these nutrients can provide immune system support and overall health benefits.
- Photobiology of vitamin D in mushrooms and its bioavailability in humans, (1)https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3897585/
- Vitamin D2 is as effective as vitamin D3 in maintaining circulating concentrations of 25-hydroxyvitamin D, (2)https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/18089691/
- Bioavailability of vitamin D2 from UV-B-irradiated button mushrooms in healthy adults deficient in serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D: a randomized controlled trial, (3)https://www.nature.com/articles/ejcn201153