Next time you order a pizza, you may want to get extra mushrooms because new research shows they could help you cut the risk of brain decline as you age. A new study from the National University of Singapore finds eating the fungi could slash the risk of developing mild cognitive impairment, or MCI, by 50%.
Researchers from the NUS Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine say that two cooked standard portions of mushrooms a week is enough to divide the risk of MCI in half. And that’s thanks to an amino acid called ergothioneine, or ET for short. Folks with mild cognitive impairment are known to have low levels of ET and this study finds that eating mushrooms could be an easy way to boost those levels.
The results of the six-year study are encouraging, but even researchers were surprised by the correlation, according to researcher Feng Lei. He explains, “It seems that a commonly available single ingredient could have a dramatic effect on cognitive decline.”