What is a Beta-Glucan?

You probably know that fiber is good for you. But did you know that not all fiber is created equal? There are two main types of dietary fiber: soluble and insoluble. Beta-glucan is typically a soluble fiber found in the cell walls of bacteria, yeasts, algae, grains, and mushrooms (like Reishi, Cordyceps, Maitake, Shiitake, Lion’s Mane, and Chaga). The beta-glucans in mushrooms are attracting a great deal of attention due to their many health benefits.

How do Beta-Glucans Work?

While most beta-glucans are soluble fiber (if they are “branched” in certain sequences) they are insoluble. Whereas soluble fiber dissolves easily in water and then becomes a gel-like substance in the gut, insoluble fiber doesn’t dissolve at all. Instead, it remains whole as it moves through the gastrointestinal tract.

Insoluble Beta-glucans are not absorbed into the body during the digestive process. Instead, it slows down the transit of food. This means that digestion takes longer to digest. This can help keep blood sugar at healthy levels. Some beta-glucans can also bind to cholesterol, so that less is absorbed.

Beta-glucans from different sources vary in structure. It is well accepted that those with more complex structures provide better immune support and are more anti-carcinogenic. The most complex beta-glucans are those from mushrooms. So, if supporting immunity is your goal, your beta-glucans should come from mushrooms. 

Cordyceps mushroom high in beta-glucans

Benefits of Beta-Glucans

  1. Stimulates the immune response to defend against infections. [1]
  2. Supports intestinal health by increasing the resistance to inflammation and inhibiting the development of ulcers. [2]
  3. Reduces cholesterol and triglycerides to support a healthy heart[2]
  4. Promotes the metabolism of fats and sugars to help maintain a healthy body weight[2]
  5. Decreases the body’s inflammatory response by regulating inflammatory markers in the body.

How to Include More Beta-Glucans in Your Diet

Because your body can’t make beta-glucans, you must get them from foods. As mentioned, they’re common in yeasts, algae and cereal grains. However, the fruiting bodies of mushrooms (again, like Reishi, Cordyceps, Maitake, Shiitake, Lion’s Mane and Chaga) provide much higher levels and more profound health benefits. An easy way to add these to your diet is by using our MyPure™ Mushroom formulas.*

MyPure™ Mushrooms contain no fillers, binders, flavorings, colorings, or common allergens of any kind. They are 100% pure mushroom extracts. Our original formulas use only 1:1 hot water treated extracts that are up to 50% beta-glucans. Our 4X formulas combine 1:1 extracts with higher ratio extracts that contain lower (but still highly beneficial) levels of beta-glucans, but richer concentrations of phytochemicals that are specific to each mushroom.*

There are, of course, other perfectly fine mushrooms brands to choose from. Nonetheless, it’s often a case of “buyer beware,” because there are also many “mushroom” supplements that are not mushrooms at all, but mycelia grown on grain.

Mycelia are another part of the organism that produces mushrooms. Mycelia grown on grain contains less than 1/10th the beta-glucans found in real mushrooms, and a whole lot of simple starch (from the grains they grown on). To be sure you’re getting real mushrooms, avoid products whose labels contain the words “mycelia” and “rice,” “corn,” “wheat,” or any other grain.

The recommended usage for pure mushroom powder is 500 to 5000 mg per day. The low end is for those who use mushrooms to maintain general wellbeing. If you are in this group, our original MyPure™ Mushroom formulas are perfect, especially when you consider that real mushrooms provide up to 10 times more beta-glucans than mycelia grown on grain.*

The higher usage range is for those who want maximum mushroom benefits. If this is you, you’ll want our MyPure™ 4X formulas. Each capsule of these formulas provides the equivalent of 2250 to 2400 mg of whole mushroom nutrition (up to 10 capsules of mycelia on grain).*

No matter which formula you choose, you can be sure you are getting the cleanest, purest mushroom nutrition available anywhere.* 

How Much Beta-Glucans are in MyPure™ Mushrooms?

The percentage of beta-glucans that each product is guaranteed to contain is stated on the label in the Supplement Facts Box. Those percentages range from 25% to 40%, depending on the mushroom.

As with all natural products, the levels of beta-glucans in mushrooms varies from batch to batch. Thereby, we use numbers that we have seen by testing dozens of batches. Each batch will always at least meet these percentages and nearly always exceeds them. Should any lot not meet that level (it’s never happened), it would be discarded.

To determine the total mg of beta-glucans in a tablet of any MyPure™ Mushroom formula, simply multiply the weight in the capsule (500 mg) times the percentage of beta-glucans the product is guaranteed to contain. For MyPure™ Maitake, the number would be at least 125 mg (500 mg times 25%). For MyPure™ Reishi, it would be at least 200 mg (500 mg times 40%). 




[1] Chen, Shiu-Nan et al. “The Effect of Mushroom Beta-Glucans from Solid Culture of Ganoderma lucidum on Inhibition of the Primary Tumor Metastasis.” Evidence-based complementary and alternative medicine : eCAM vol. 2014 (2014): 252171. doi:10.1155/2014/252171

[2] Rop, Otakar et al. “Beta-glucans in higher fungi and their health effects.” Nutrition reviews vol. 67,11 (2009): 624-31. doi:10.1111/j.1753-4887.2009.00230.x

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