PAN AFRICAN JOURNAL OF LIFE SCIENCES
Volume 6, No. 1, April 2022
Mushrooms in Nigeria: Neglected but beneficial Nutraceutical and Functional Food
Comfort O. Bamigboye, Julius K. Oloke, Elijah A. Adebayo, Iyabo O. Omomowo
Microbiology Unit, Department of Pure and Applied Biology, Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, P. M. B. 4000, Ogbomoso, Nigeria.
Mushrooms are macroscopic fungi consumed for their rich nutritious taste, aroma and health benefits. Mushrooms grow naturally in the wild as saprophytes and are available in most African countries in the rainy season. Mushrooms have long been recognised as functional foods and nutraceuticals due to the many health benefits attributable to their richness in bioactive components.
Some health benefits include anticancer, hepatoprotective, anti-viral, cholesterol-lowering, immune -boosting, antioxidant and anti-ageing properties. Despite these established uses, many mushrooms have not been popularly domesticated in Nigeria, thereby hindering the functional use of this nature’s gem as promising nutraceuticals. Besides, the mycophobic attitudes of many citizens have significantly prevented their exploitation.
This review showcases mushrooms as affordable and exotic functional foods, rich in phytochemicals with great benefits for wellness. This suggests that a further boost in knowledge is required for the populace to embrace mushrooms’ cultivation, consumption, and medicinal applications.
Keywords: Functional food, Mushroom, Nutraceuticals, Bioactive compounds, mushroom production, mushroom potentials