Turkey Tail Mushrooms
The Turkey Tail mushroom’s scientific name is Trametes versicolor, but it has also been known by the name Coriolus versicolor and, in Traditional Chinese Medicine, Yun Zhi.
This mushroom’s interesting name offers us a clue about its appearance. With a little imagination, it does indeed look a bit like the colorful fan of a turkey’s tail feathers.
Growing up to four inches wide, these mushrooms can be found on dead logs and stumps as well as live trees, mostly showing up in mixed hardwood deciduous forests. And they’re not limited to one part of the world.
Benefits Of Turkey Tail Mushroom
Rich in Antioxidants
Antioxidants minimize cell damage from free radicals, thus also minimizing oxidative stress. This makes antioxidants important for overall health. And one thing that we love about Turkey Tail mushrooms is that they are rich in antioxidants.
Due to the many beneficial compounds it contains, turkey tail is commonly used in tandem with traditional treatments like chemotherapy as a natural way to fight certain cancers.
A review of 13 studies found that patients given 1–3.6 grams of turkey tail mushroom per day along with conventional treatment had a significant survival advantage.
The study showed that people with breast cancer, gastric cancer or colorectal cancer treated with turkey tail and chemotherapy experienced a 9% reduction in 5-year mortality compared to chemotherapy alone.
In general, mushrooms are known for a carbohydrate called polysaccharides, specifically a type called beta glucans. Beta glucans are shown to support immune health and overall wellness, as well as normal, healthy cell growth and turnover.
With Turkey Tail mushrooms, this goes a step further. They are famous for containing two polysaccharides in particular. One is called PSP, which stands for polysaccharide peptide or polysaccharopeptide. The other is PSK, which stands for polysaccharide K, Polysaccharide Kurcha, or Krestin. Both of these polysaccharides provide immune support.
Keeping a healthy balance of beneficial bacteria in your guts is critical for maintaining a strong immune system. Your gut bacteria interact with immune cells and directly impact your immune response.Turkey tail contains prebiotics, which help nourish these helpful bacteria.
Support Liver Health
Turkey Tail has been used in China for centuries as a traditional agent to help treat a variety of health concerns and to provide support for a healthy liver. Because Turkey Tail mushrooms help protect the liver, many herbalists believe that taking a supplement containing Turkey Tail can be more effective for liver support than any pre-packaged cleanse or detox kit on the market.