Commonly called Jew’s Ear, Wood Ear, or Jelly Ear, Auricularia auricula-judae grows on both dead and living wood and can have a light or dark brown colour (getting darker as it ages). Although they are found in Europe, Asia, North Africa and North America, they were the first cultivated mushroom in China around 100BC.
The Jew's Ear Mushroom has long been used for its flavour and medicinal properties.
Traditional experiences (and now modern studies) have demonstrated that this mushroom has distinct pharmacological properties: treats gastric disorders, anti-tumour (cancer fighting), anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, anti-coagulant, anti-diabetic and cholesterol lowering effects. Even simply gargling with it alleviates a sore throat or tonsilitis, and it is also used to naturally treat chronic bronchitis.
But besides the overall health and longevity promoting benefits, it has been discovered that skin health and longevity is phenomenally increased.
It’s the active compounds inside this edible fungus that deliver all the benefits: Polysaccharides, cellulose, pectin, uronic acids, vitamins (B and D2 especially), minerals and essential amino acids (alanine, glycine, glutamic acid, aspargic acid, proline and serine)(1).
What makes this mushroom a little extra special is it has an extremely high amount of calcium, melanin, ergosterol (a sterol) and adenosine (an organic compound)(2).
Unchecked chronic inflammation in the body leads to many diseases and illnesses: cancer, arthritis, obesity, asthma, diabetes, heart disease to name a few.
Inflammation also causes premature aging, not just of our bodies, but of our skin (our largest organ). It does this by destroying the structural components of our skin, namely collagen and elastin.
So, it makes sense that if we combat inflammation, we can slow down the aging process and literally look & feel younger.
Cytokines are a secreted protein in the body that are responsible for our immune response (increasing or decreasing inflammation) and the production of blood cells. Cytokines are produced by macrophages and helper T cells. Influencing and stimulating macrophages has an influence on inflammatory cytokines which helps to prevent and decrease inflammation.
Tests done on mice macrophages induced with nitric oxide and pro-inflammatory cytokines, showed that when Auricularia auricula-judae extract was introduced there was a reduction in cytokine expression, compared to test cells where no extract was given. This reduction in cytokine activity leads to a reduction in inflammation(3).
Another study for 30 different species of Auricularia showed that ALL had high anti-inflammation activity which prevents cell damage(4).
While testing dietary supplementation with polysaccharides that were extracted from Auricularia auricula-judae on mice, results showed decreased inflammatory levels (as well as improvements in insulin resistance, slower body weight gain, and cholesterol gene suppression)(5).
Elevated oxidative stress is an excess in the production of reactive oxygen species (ROS). ROS is a subset of free radicals, which the body naturally produces through normal metabolic processes or from external factor (x-rays, smoking, pollutants).
Too much oxidative stress and ROS can lead to dysfunctions in our body, such as: headaches, wrinkles, gray hair, muscle & joint pain, brain fog, decreased eyesight. If the imbalance in not rectified it can then lead to DNA damage and inflammation.
Oxidative stress has even been linked to serious neurological diseases like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.
Antioxidants are what protect the body from the toxic effects of active oxygen. When the antioxidant cannot properly remove active oxygen (eliminate free radicals / ROS) and there is an accumulation, these mentioned symptoms & diseases can occur.
When it comes to our skin, ROS causes aging by destroying collagen (our skins main protein).
In vitro tests performed on Auricularia auricula-judae extracts in different dilutions, showed huge free radical scavenging properties (antioxidant activity) in the dilutions with higher phenols and flavonoids(6).
Other researchers placed different concentrations of prepared Auricularia auricula-judae in test tubes and added DPPH (a free radical) to assess antioxidant variations. All extracts revealed potent antioxidant activity, but especially in the 40-60µg/mL and 10-70µg/mL concentration ranges(7).
A study also carried out on Auricularia auricula-judae extract in vitro, not only showed potent antioxidant activity but also the promotion in the biosynthesis of procollagen in HaCaT cells (human keratinocytes). Test cells increased this biosynthesis more than two times that of the control cells.
This study also showed the expression of HAS-3 (hyaluronic acid synthase) was increased more than 30% in HaCaT cells when Auricularia auricula-judae was added, compared to the control cells. This all suggests that the antioxidant activities of Auricularia auricula-judae show potential to work on a cellular level to promote skin health(8).
Your Skin's Best Friend
In conclusion, what this research has shown is that the Jew’s Ear Mushroom is full of anti-aging and beauty benefits through its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant activity -
- Increased collagen production
- Increased hyaluronic acid synthesis
- Promotes skin hydration (less fine lines)
- Promotes skin barrier protection (less pigmentation)
- Promotes skin elasticity (reduction in wrinkles)
- Overall improvement in skin health
My Beauty Luv’s global first formulation, Beauty Blast®, brings this advanced anti-aging & scientifically tested mushroom to you. As mushrooms dehydrate rapidly after harvesting (due to their high water content), we freeze-dry and powder the whole fruiting body, ensuring complete compound integrity.
- Kadnikova, I., Costa, R., Kalenik, T., Guruleva, O., & Yanguo, S. (2015). Chemical Composition and Nutritional Value of the Mushroom Auricularia auricula- Journal of Food and Nutrition Research, Vol. 3, No. 8, 478-482 (2015). doi: 10.12691/jfnr-3-8-1.
- Islam, T., Ganesan, K., & Xu, B. (2021). Insights into health-promoting effects of Jew’s ear (Auricularia auricula-judae). Trends in Food Science & Technology, 114, 552–569. doi:10.1016/j.tifs.2021.06.017
- Damte, D., Reza, M. A., Lee, S.-J., Jo, W.-S., & Park, S.-C. (2011). Anti-inflammatory Activity of Dichloromethane Extract of Auricularia auricula-judae in RAW264.7 Cells. Toxicological Research, 27(1), 11–14.doi:10.5487/tr.2011.27.1.011
- Islam, T., Yoa, F., Kang, W,. Lu, L,. & Xu, B. (2022). A systematic study on mycochemical profiles, antioxidant, and anti-inflammatory activities of 30 varieties of Jew’s ear (Auricularia auricula-judae). Food Science and Human Wellness, Vol. 11, Iss. 4, 781-794 (2022). doi: 1016/j.fshw.2022.03.005
- Liu, Q.; Ma, R.; Li, S.; Fei, Y.; Lei, J.; Li, R.; Pan, Y.; Liu, S.; Wang, L. (2022). Dietary Supplementation of Auricularia auricula-judae Polysaccharides Alleviate Nutritional Obesity in Mice via Regulating Inflammatory Response and Lipid Metabolism. Foods 2022, 11, 942. Doi: 10.3390/ foods11070942
- Packialakshmi, B., Sudha, G., and Charumathy, M. (2017). Studies on Phytochemical Compounds and Antioxidant Potential of Auricularia Auricula-Judae. International Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences and Research8(8):3508-3515. (Aug 2017).
- Gebreyohannes, G., Nyerere, A., Bii, C., & Sbhatu, D. B. (2019). Investigation of Antioxidant and Antimicrobial Activities of Different Extracts of Auricularia and Termitomyces Species of Mushrooms. The Scientific World Journal, 2019, 1–10.doi:10.1155/2019/7357048
- Choi, Y.-J., Park, I.-S., Kim, M.-H., Kwon, B., Choo, Y.-M., Jeong, S.-I., … Kim, J. (2018). The medicinal mushroom Auricularia auricula-judae (Bull.) extract has antioxidant activity and promotes procollagen biosynthesis in HaCaT cells. Natural Product Research, 1–4.doi:10.1080/14786419.2018.1468332