The Chanterelle Mushrooms are widely popular due to their unique taste and odour. Not only do they taste good, but they also have an eye-catching appearance. The word Chanterelle is a French word that means the wild edible mushroom.
Chanterelles are one of the most expensive mushrooms. You can find them worldwide in hardwoods with temperate climatic conditions. These mushrooms do not grow in thick clusters, and you cannot find them on decaying wood like most other mushrooms. The most suitable conditions for their growth are sauna-like conditions with heavy rains followed by high heat. Hence, it is not possible to grow them in fields. Chanterelle mushrooms have wide-ranging health benefits.
This article looks at the various aspects of chanterelle mushrooms in detail, including their types, ways to consume, and health benefits.
Types of Chanterelle Mushroom
Chanterelle Mushrooms come in different varieties. Chanterelle Mushrooms are classified based on their colour, fragrance, appearance etc. Below are some of the popular types.
- Golden Chanterelle
- Cinnabar-red Chanterelle
- Smooth Chanterelle
- Small Chanterelle
- White Chanterelle
Nutritional Profile of Chanterelle Mushroom
Based on USDA research, the nutritional facts of one hundred grams of chanterelle mushrooms are listed below.
- Water: 89.8 g
- Energy: 32 kcal
- Protein: 1.49 g
- Total fat: 0.53 g
- Ash: 1.26g
- Carbohydrate, by difference: 6.86 g
- Total dietary fibre: 3.8 g
- Iron: 3.47 mg
The HealthifyMe Note
Chanterelle mushrooms are one of the most nutrient-rich and beneficial mushrooms. They have low calories and carbohydrates, making them suitable for a weight management diet. In addition, they are rich in fibre and minerals like iron, magnesium, phosphorus, and potassium. Furthermore, chanterelle mushrooms also have vitamin D, which helps keep the muscles and bones healthy.
Chanterelle Mushroom: Health Benefits
The above nutritional profile shows that chanterelle mushroom contains various nutrients, vitamins and minerals. As a result, it provides immense health benefits to the body. Some of them are listed below.
Rich in Antioxidants
Antioxidants are a class of compounds that plays a crucial role in reducing inflammation in the body. As per substantial research done over the years, inflammation is a primary cause of various diseases.
Antioxidants reduce inflammation in the body by countering the free radicals. Chanterelle mushrooms are rich in antioxidants like flavonoids, polyphenols, pyrogallol, ascorbic acid, beta-carotene and interleukin. These antioxidants can help prevent cardiovascular diseases and other health issues.
Chanterelle mushrooms have a reasonable amount of vitamin D as well. Although it is present in a relatively more minor amount, research has shown that vitamin D is essential for maintaining bone health. That is because vitamin D helps absorb minerals like calcium (by stimulating certain kinds of proteins in the small intestine), which plays a crucial role in maintaining bone health. Increased calcium absorption increases Bone Mineral Density (BMD) signifies healthy bones.
Vitamin D also helps prevent painful conditions like osteoporosis. Moreover, the anti-inflammatory properties of chanterelle mushrooms help ease pain from conditions like arthritis. Various studies have shown that a lack of vitamin D makes the bones brittle and thin.
Reduces the Risk of Cancer
Research has suggested that chanterelle mushrooms can help prevent various forms of cancer. Furthermore, it shows that polysaccharides (like chitin and chitosan) in chanterelle mushrooms are responsible for their anti-cancer properties.
Another study found that chanterelle mushrooms were effective in treating and preventing cancer. It is due to the effectiveness of an antioxidant named ergothioneine, commonly present in mushrooms.
Some other studies also claim that chanterelle mushrooms effectively protect against cancer. They are most effective against prostate cancer, though the effectiveness against other cancer forms is not understated.
Various theories try to explain how chanterelle mushrooms help in better immunity. Chanterelle mushrooms are rich in polysaccharides known as chitin and chitosan. These help in the maintenance of the immune system by stimulating new cells. Not only this, but these two polysaccharides also prevent the cells from getting damaged in the body.
Studies show that chanterelle mushrooms are capable of supporting the immune system. In addition, a study suggested that since the mushroom interacts with the gut microbiota, it strengthens adaptive immunity and boosts overall immunity.
Another study shows that chanterelle mushrooms help the proliferation effect of B and T cells which secretes antibodies. As a result, it improves immune response to external threats. Not only this, vitamin D present in chanterelle mushrooms may play a key role in preventing Covid-19, especially in older people. Preliminary research has suggested that vitamin D intake can lower the disease’s incidence.
Chanterelle mushrooms can benefit your heart health in many ways.
First, they have negligible sodium, which prevents the risk of any negative impact on blood pressure levels. In addition, they have a large number of antioxidants that prevent inflammation and protect against heart diseases. Also, studies have shown that chanterelle mushrooms decrease the amount of bad cholesterol, which is the primary reason for heart-related ailments.
Improves Skin Health
Vitamin B3 in the skin is necessary to have glowing skin, and chanterelle is a rich source of vitamin B3. Furthermore, vitamin B3 is essential to treat acne and reduce skin-related issues like redness, inflammation etc.
Studies have shown that antioxidants like ergothioneine and glutathione play a key role in keeping the skin young and youthful and reducing wrinkles.
Improves Cognitive Function
According to studies, chanterelle mushroom has an antioxidant capacity that helps treat issues related to neurodegenerative diseases. In addition, chanterelle mushrooms contain high amounts of iron, which helps maintain brain health and continuous blood flow to the brain. A recent study also showed that chanterelle mushrooms reduce mild cognitive decline.
Another study suggests that polyphenols in chanterelle mushrooms help enhance cognitive function in older adults. It also decreases the likelihood of Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease.
Reduces the Risk of Type 2 Diabetes
Vitamin D in abundance in chanterelle mushrooms can significantly reduce the risk of type2 diabetes. Vitamin D is one of the essential vitamins required to regulate diabetes. Moreover, vitamin D plays a vital role in insulin sensitivity and controls the functions of beta cells.
Improves Emotional Well Being
This benefit of chanterelle mushrooms is crucial today when the number of people suffering from depression and mental health problems is at its peak. These problems further increased during the Covid-19 pandemic when people had to stay inside their homes.
A recent study suggested that regular intake of chanterelle mushrooms enhances your mood and reduces the chances of depression.
Best Ways to Use Chanterelle Mushrooms
There can be various delicious ways in which you can consume chanterelle mushrooms. For example, you can use them to garnish chicken, steak etc., or cook or pickle them. You can also serve them with wine. Following is a healthy recipe that you can try.
Preparation time: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 30 minutes
1 cup: 250 g
- Butter: 4 tbsp
- Chopped fresh garlic: 2 cloves
- Sliced Chanterelle: 2 cups
- Rice: 2 cups
- Vegetable broth: 5 cups
- Black pepper: As per taste
- Salt: As per taste
- Melt 2 tbsp butter in a large pan over medium heat.
- Add the chopped mushroom and garlic to the melted butter and stir it for three minutes or until the mushrooms turn slightly brown.
- Meanwhile, melt the remaining 2 tbsp butter in another pan.
- Add rice to it and stir it for 2 minutes.
- Now slowly add half a cup of vegetable broth at a time while stirring, and make sure to keep it boiling on constant heat.
- Cook for about 20 minutes.
- Once fully cooked, add the cheese and butter. Add salt to taste before serving.
Allergies and Possible Side-effects
Although chanterelle mushrooms come with many health benefits, there are some things that you should be careful about. Here are some of them.
Accumulated Heavy Metals
Chanterelle mushrooms accumulate heavy metals like cadmium, lead and mercury. In most cases, the accumulated amounts are above safe limits and can be toxic. However, research has shown that you can reduce the concentration by processes such as blanching and pickling.
Avoid Eating Raw
If chanterelle mushrooms are taken raw, they can cause nausea and vomiting. Some people may be completely fine even after eating them raw. However, to consume them safely, it is better to cook them before eating to prevent unintended side effects.
The HealthifyMe Note
Mushroom allergy is relatively common. People allergic to mushrooms should avoid chanterelle mushrooms at all costs. Also, people suffering from chronic health issues should consult doctors before eating them.
Safety and Storage
Storing chanterelle mushrooms can be challenging. One rooted, they decay soon and affect the good ones. So while storing, it is always necessary to eliminate the spoiled ones and wash the good ones by cleaning them using a toothbrush to get rid of the dust on them. Then, place them in a paper bag and remember not to stuff them in a single bag as they require plenty of air to survive. Then, store them in the refrigerator. You can also keep them by freezing them after they are cooked and picking them up.
Chanterelle mushrooms have a delightful fragrance and are very delicious to eat. Unfortunately, they are expensive because they cannot be grown domestically due to the surrounding conditions they require to grow. As a result, they are not a common ingredient. However, they come with various health benefits like improving heart, brain and bone health. So adding chanterelle mushrooms to the diet, even occasionally, is a healthy choice.
One must remember that chanterelle mushrooms require high maintenance as they quickly get spoiled. Hence, storing them in the right way is crucial. In addition, you should remember that people with serious health issues and mushroom allergies should consult a doctor before eating them.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Q. Can chanterelles make you sick?
A. Consuming them raw or improperly cooked can cause vomiting and nausea. Not only eating raw ones, storing them properly plays a crucial role as they spoil quickly if the required conditions are not met and hence can make you fall sick.
Q. Can you eat chanterelles raw?
A. People have their ways of eating chanterelles. Some prefer eating them raw, and some like cooking them. But there is a chance of getting sick if you eat them raw. The raw ones can cause vomiting and nausea. So nutritionists suggest cleaning them and cooking them instead of eating them raw.
Q. Do chanterelles grow in Australia?
A. The rain forests in Australia meet the minimum requirements for the chanterelles to grow. So yes, Chanterelles do grow in Australia. People have discovered that Australia has at least three different species of chanterelles.
Q. Are there poisonous chanterelles?
A. Chanterelles provide a considerable amount of required nutrients, but spoiled ones can cause side effects. There is reportedly no poisonous chanterelle. However, there is a chanterelle look-alike known as Jack-O-Lantern mushroom, which is toxic.
Q. Do you refrigerate chanterelles?
A. The lifespan of Chanterelles reduces drastically after harvesting them. Storing them in the refrigerator can keep them fresh for 4 to 5 days, but you should store them in paper bags to provide enough space for air.
Q. Can you boil chanterelles?
A. People have their ways of cooking chanterelles. Many prefer to boil them before cooking. It is essential to remember when boiling Chanterelles. They should be submerged completely. Boiling helps in killing unwanted pathogens, if there are any. Before boiling chanterelles, it is always necessary to wash and clean them using a clean toothbrush to clean the dust present on them.
Q. Are chanterelles good for you?
A. Many doctors recommend including Chanterelles in your diet as they contain abundant nutrients, vitamins and minerals and help maintain good health. So yes, they are suitable for you if consumed in a limited amount.
Q. Do chanterelles have medicinal properties?
A. Chanterelles does have medical value. Hence they are prefered in the day-to-day diet by many people. Also, chanterelles are rich in polysaccharides known as chitin and chitosan. These help in the maintenance of the immune system. Now scientists are researching how Chanterelles can be an alternative to chemical-based treatments.
Q. What happens if you eat chanterelles raw?
A. Eating Chanterelles raw has no significant issues, but it can cause vomiting and nausea in some people. Thus, before eating them raw, it is always necessary for Chanterelles to be fresh and unspoiled. Otherwise, it may cause harmful effects on your body.
Q. What vitamins do chanterelles have?
A. Chanterelle consists of several vitamins, some of which are:
- Thiamine (Vitamin B1)
- Riboflavin (vitamin B2)
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin D
- Vitamin E