Information from the first website:

"(...) They also have been found to have high levels of some antioxidant compounds that may help prevent some cancers. (...)"

Information from the second website:

"(...) The list of edible mushrooms considered safe for raw consumption is quite short. Even species commonly eaten raw, especially the ubiquitous button mushroom, Agaricus bisporus, have their drawbacks. Buttons, and many other edible mushrooms contain various hydrazines, a group of chemical compounds generally considered carcinogenic. (...)"

So, is eating raw white mushrooms dangerous for health? The second website claims that it's quite dangerous. Are there any scientific papers which confirm that?

  • 4
    What is the dose in which they are supposed to be carcinogenic?
    – user5341
    Commented Nov 26, 2011 at 19:43
  • @DVK. Tests on mices mentioned in the article were done with "massive" doses. Does it This mean that there isn't anything I should worry about when eating button mushrooms in moderate doses?
    – Lucasus
    Commented Nov 26, 2011 at 21:12
  • for poisons, the dosage matters greatly. For carcinogens, the dose and the frequency matters - see for example ukpmc.ac.uk/abstract/MED/7365379/… . If you eat a couple of mushrooms a week, I seriously doubt you'd get enough of an exposure. See ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/2852120 for the study
    – user5341
    Commented Nov 26, 2011 at 21:34
  • 4
    @DVK for carcinogens there is usually no dose that is considered safe, the effects are cumulative. Of course, the dose still matters a great deal, the more carcinogenic substances you're exposed to the more risk you face to develop cancer. I'd also point out that the site in the question talks about hydrazines as a group, your paper is about hydrazine, the properties of those can be different.
    – Mad Scientist
    Commented Nov 26, 2011 at 21:45
  • @Fabian - correct about cumulative effects - but still you can't really develop cancer with any likelyhood from a couple of molecules worth. So the dose DOES matter. The fact that I don't have generic paper for all hydrazines is the reason it's a comment, not an answer :)
    – user5341
    Commented Nov 26, 2011 at 22:05

1 Answer 1


Although raw button mushrooms (Agaricus bisporus) do contain a carcinogenic hydrazine, agaritine, a recent review by Roupas et al (2010) concludes:

The available evidence to date suggests that agaritine from consumption of cultivated A. bisporus mushrooms poses no known toxicological risk to healthy humans.

Peter Roupas, Jennifer Keogh, Manny Noakes, Christine Margetts, Pennie Taylor, Mushrooms and agaritine: A mini-review, Journal of Functional Foods, Volume 2, Issue 2, April 2010, Pages 91-98

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