Bitter Blockers Allow Functional Mushrooms to Shine

A mushroom stands straight at one-third of the way into the composition on the right. The white stem and seemingly glowing yellowy-orange cap stands out from the deep mossy greens and rich umber browns of the soil that surrounds it. The mushroom cap is mostly inverted, unveiling the gills which are illuninated by the upper ambient (sun)light. Mushrooms like this one are used as "functional mushrooms" and ingredients in food, beverage, and nutraceuticals to give a boost of healthy benefits. Functional mushrooms often taste like their environment - soil, earthy, umami - and bitter blockers help mask that taste.

Bites from the Bench™: Functional mushrooms are in a great deal of food and beverage products as well as nutraceuticals. Now we are seeing psilocybin beginning to enter the same markets across the globe. TruClear™ and TruMask™ bitter blockers stand out for their ability to mask the taste of the functional mushrooms, known for their umami and earthy taste profiles. 

Functional mushrooms are becoming an increasingly popular ingredient in food and beverage products, as well as nutraceuticals. Products containing these ingredients are now available in almost all grocery stores, allowing consumers to reap the benefits of these powerful fungi.

In particular, functional mushrooms are used in beverages to provide health benefits. For instance, Lion’s Mane, Chaga, and Reishi mushrooms offer earthy flavors in popular powdered coffee and coffee alternative drinks while also claiming to reduce inflammation. At times, the taste profile can be a bit off-putting, with some consumers noting that their coffee alternative tastes like “soil or watered-down mud.” While these mushrooms are also known to have immune-boosting and anti-inflammatory properties, great taste is something all consumers seek, and our bitter blockers significantly impact these products.

Psilocybin, the active ingredient in hallucinogenic mushrooms, is making waves in the health and wellness industry. With increasing interest in the potential therapeutic and medicinal benefits of psilocybin, the industry is beginning to explore and prioritize the taste of psilocybin-containing products. 

Many products containing psilocybin are now being formulated to provide better-tasting, easier-to-consume products. The goal is to make psilocybin more accessible and appealing to a broader range of users. As more people become interested in the potential benefits of psilocybin, taste, and product design are becoming more important. 

In particular, many psilocybin-containing products are aiming to provide a microdose, which is a small amount of the substance taken to feel its effects without producing a hallucinogenic experience. These products come in various forms, including capsules, gummies, and drinks. Manufacturers are also exploring making psilocybin-containing products more palatable by using bitter blockers. Some companies are adding unique features, like making capsules with a sweet coating or adding TruSugr™ to gummies to make them more enjoyable. 

As psilocybin and its potential health benefits become more widely known, taste and product design are becoming increasingly essential, and TastesNatural™ bitter blockers are a great fit.

Watch this brief video that reflects on the range of functional mushrooms.

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