BUFFALO, N.Y. – A preliminary study of the effects of
mushroom ingestion on health conducted by University at Buffalo
nutrition scientists and physiologists has found that healthy male
and female subjects who consumed mushrooms with glucose had a
significant decrease in glucose responses compared to those who
consumed glucose alone.
The effect was particularly strong in women.
Although mushroom intake previously has been reported to have
beneficial effects on weight management, immune function and
quality of life, this is the first to examine its effect on glucose
“Our results indicate that consumption of mushrooms could
be useful in regulating glucose levels,” says study co-author
Peter Horvath, PhD, associate professor, Department of Exercise and
Nutrition Sciences, UB School of Public Health and Health
Professions. “This alone may benefit individuals attempting
to lose weight and who want to exercise for a longer
The study, “The effect of mushroom intake on modulating
post-prandial glycemic response,” was funded by UB; the
authors all are members of the faculty of the UB School of Public
Health and Health Professions, and the School of Medicine and
It was published in the April edition of The Journal of the
Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology (Vol. 8,
Issue 4) and was reported at the 2014 Experimental Biology Meeting,
held last month in San Diego.
The subjects were eight men and 10 women 19 to 29 years of age
(average age 23 years). Their body fat measured 19.7 percent,
±7.7 percent; their fasting glucose levels were 88.8,
±6.2 milligrams per deciliter.
In this crossover study, each subject completed three modified
Oral Glucose Tolerance Tests (OGTTs) over a two-week period. The
OGTTs were evaluated in subjects who consumed one of three drinks,
each equally sweet: a 75 g glucose drink (G), a 75 g glucose drink
with 9.5 g Portabella powder (MG) or 9.5 g Portabella powder with
Stevia/flavored water (M). Fasting and 30-minute blood samples were
collected for two hours.
Results showed that:
- Glucose levels were elevated after consumption of G and MG,
with levels after MG consumption higher in men at 30 minutes
(p<0.02) and women at 60 (p<0.005) and 120 min
- Insulin levels were higher after G and MG consumption than
after M consumption, but after MG consumption, levels showed a more
gradual decline in women. There was no difference in insulin levels
between G and MG groups detected in men.
- Mushroom powder reduced rebound hypoglycemia and rapid insulin
decrease in women compared to glucose alone.
- Men did not show a reduction in rebound hypoglycemia with
consumption of MG.
The results suggest that mushrooms may moderate postprandial
glucose-related responses. This mushroom-effect seems to be
exaggerated in a young, healthy female population.
In addition to Horvath, authors of the study are graduate
student Harry Marsales and Assistant Professor Todd C. Rideout,
PhD, UB Department of Exercise and Nutrition Sciences, and graduate
student Brian T. Williams, UB Department of Physiology and
Biophysics, and undergraduate student Zach M. Lamacchia, Program in
Biomedical Science, both in the School of Medicine and Biomedical