Mushrooms Go PINK in support of breast cancer research

Breast cancer, pink ribbons and mushrooms; what's the connection?

TORONTO, Sept. 20, 2011 /CNW/ - Breast cancer is the most common cancer in Canadian women. According to the Canadian Cancer Society, in 2010 an estimated 23,200 women were diagnosed with breast cancer, and sadly 5,300 will die of it.

"Breast cancer has touched most of our lives and we've all seen, firsthand, how devastating it can be," says Nick Pora, past President of Mushrooms Canada. "Personally speaking, I watched my sister-in-law courageously battle breast cancer. It's in everyone's family or circles of friends, and that's why I'm so proud that Canadian mushroom farmers and the Breast Cancer Society of Canada are working together again to raise research dollars."

Mushrooms Go Pink
"From September 19th to November 11th, you will find fresh Canadian mushrooms packed in pink trays with a pink ribbon on the label," says Frank Moscone, President of Mushrooms Canada. "For every pound of mushrooms sold in the pink packages, Canadian mushroom farmers will make a contribution to the Breast Cancer Society of Canada."

Looking for other ways to help? Log onto Facebook and join the "Mushrooms Go Pink" group. For every person who joins the group on Facebook, Mushrooms Canada will donate $0.10, to a maximum of $5000.00, to the Breast Cancer Society of Canada.

In 2010 the Mushrooms Go PINK campaign raised 150% of its initial goal.

"Mushroom Canada's 2010 campaign far exceeded our expectations, raising $61,128.18 for breast cancer research, with pink trays in the grocery stores providing tremendous awareness to our cause," says Dawn Hamilton, Fund Development Co-ordinator for BCSC. "The Breast Cancer Society of Canada is absolutely thrilled to once again be part of Mushrooms Go PINK. We look forward to a successful 2011."

The Power of Mushrooms
What exactly is the connection between mushrooms and breast cancer? Reports by Dr. Shiuan Chen of the City of Hope Cancer Centre in Los Angeles state that fresh mushrooms may have anti-tumour properties.

Mushrooms contain Conjugated Linoleic Acid; and CLA suppresses a natural substance in the body called aromatase. By blocking aromatase, physicians can reduce the levels of circulating estrogen in post-menopausal women.  That is important because, according to the Canadian Cancer Society, high levels of estrogen are associated with a higher risk of breast cancer.

"Diet is a key consideration for disease prevention because it is something that everyone can control," says Dr. Chen. "Our research shows that women may benefit from a balanced diet, which includes about 3.5 ounces of mushrooms per day."

White button, portabella, crimini and shiitake mushrooms showed significant inhibitory effects with large mushrooms having the strongest activity.

Fresh Mushrooms - Good for Life
Even though they look simple, mushrooms have a whole lot going for them in the nutrition department. A great way to add some tasty nutrients to everyday meals is to include fresh mushrooms. One hundred grams (100 g) of fresh mushrooms count as 1 serving of Fruits & Vegetables. Mushrooms are also low in calories, carbs and fat, they provide vitamins, minerals, fibre, antioxidants, and are the only vegetable with Vitamin D.  Not to mention they have no cholesterol or sodium.

For more information on breast cancer & mushrooms, nutrition tips, and delicious recipes visit www.MushroomsGoPINK.ca.

About Mushrooms Canada:
Mushrooms Canada was founded in 1955 as a voluntary, non-profit organization whose members are dedicated to the production and marketing of fresh mushrooms in Canada. Mushrooms Canada advocates food safety, good nutrition and the proper care and handling of fresh Canadian mushrooms. For more information on Mushrooms Canada visit www.mushrooms.ca.

About Breast Cancer Society of Canada:
The Breast Cancer Society of Canada is a registered, national, not-for-profit, charitable organization dedicated to funding Canadian breast cancer research into the detection, prevention, treatment and to ultimately find a cure for the disease that women fear most. For more information visit www.bcsc.ca.

Funding for this project has been provided in part by the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food & Rural Affairs and the Ontario Market Investment Fund.

SOURCE Mushrooms Canada

For further information:

Brittany Stager, Marketing Manager, Mushrooms Canada
519-829-4125 | brittanystager@mushrooms.ca

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