Medicinal mushrooms have been largely used primarily in Asia, especially as part of traditional Chinese Medicine. Nowadays, the world is becoming more aware of the health benefits derived from some mushrooms, due in part to the recent studies exploring the subject matter. More studies have been done to learn about the components contained in some ancient medicinal mushrooms. One of the mushrooms that some research has recently focused on is the Turkey Tail mushroom.
Turkey Tail mushroom is also called as Trametes versicolor or Coriolus versicolor. Aside from its medicinal benefits, the turkey tail mushroom’s appearance is also a beauty of its own because of its striking colors and its resemblance to the shape of a coral.
As mentioned previously, the Turkey Tail mushroom was popular in many Asian cultures and it was known for its immune-boosting function and its capability to fight infections. Now, Trametes versicolor has been quite the popular subject of most modern research on medicinal mushrooms. It also helps that this type of fungi can be easily found in various parts of the world.
Turkey Tail mushroom usually grows on tree trunks and fallen trees in wooded areas. However, it is not advisable to go search for Trametes versicolor in the wild and consume it raw. If you do this, there’s a high percentage of chance that you can find other kinds of mushrooms whose appearance seems to be the same as that of Turkey Tail mushroom but are actually poisonous.
Moreover, it is widely accepted that Trametes versicolor, when eaten raw, has a chewy and unpleasant taste. The best thing to do if you are interested in trying out turkey tail mushroom is to buy it from your local health store and to purchase the organic ones so you can be sure that when you consume this type of mushroom, it is already clean and ready to be consumed and that there are no longer toxins on it that can be found in the soil where the mushroom was taken.
If you decide on purchasing turkey tail mushroom and incorporate it in your dietary health supplement, you can try to add it into your dishes by putting it in your soup. Other people also make tea out of the mushroom, some blend it in with their smoothie or add it in their salad dressing. Indeed, there are a variety of choices on how you want to consume it because it is an easy ingredient to incorporate into a dish, side, or beverage of your choice because of its mild and sweet taste.
Now, if you are still on the fence about whether you would like to try and supplement your diet with turkey tail mushrooms, Superfoods Australia listed down below some of the surprising health benefits that can be derived from turkey tail extracts. This may help you learn more about the importance of Trametes versicolor as a valuable addition to your healthy lifestyle.
Good For Immunity
One of the most popular health benefits of turkey tail mushrooms is their effect on the immune system. Trametes versicolor has always been known for boosting the immune system as part of traditional Chinese Medicine. Some modern studies have actually explored the components of turkey tail mushrooms to prove the latter’s immune boosting effect. It was known that this type of fungi contains two compounds: polysaccharopeptide (PSP) and polysaccharide-K (PSK). PSP and PSK both have powerful immune-boosting properties, thus, when one consumes turkey tail mushroom extract, it provides a big boost to one’s immune system.
But how do these two compounds boost the immune system? Studies showed that PSP and PSK seem to stimulate other immune system cells to kick into high gear and they promote immune response by activating and inhibiting specific types of immune cells and by suppressing inflammation. By doing this, Trametes versicolor helps the body’s natural response to fight harmful bacteria and viruses.
If you take turkey tail mushroom extract, there’s a high chance for you not to get sick frequently. It’s harder to catch a common cold or flu if you are taking this fungi extract and even if you catch one, the illness seems to be less severe and you can recover from it in a much shorter time.
Another thing that researches have shown about the turkey tail mushroom is that this type of fungi contains powerful antioxidants. Simply, antioxidants help combat damage due to oxidative stress. The imbalance between antioxidants and unstable molecules in the body can lead to oxidative stress, and this leads to cellular damage and inflammation. When you supplement your diet with turkey tail mushrooms, you give your body an impressive array of antioxidants to counter oxidation and inflammation.
Helps Fight Cancer
A few studies were engaged to look at possible effects of Turkey Tail mushrooms on cancer treatments. One of these studies concluded that turkey tail extract is a good supplement for cancer treatments as those patients who used turkey tail extract as a supplement with their chemotherapy and radiation therapy saw reduced recidivism rates of gastric, breast, colorectal, and lung cancers.
In addition to this, those patients who participated in the study who took turkey tail extract every day had a significant survival advantage.
Turkey tail mushroom extract contains prebiotics which helps the gut regulate its balance of bacteria. The human body needs prebiotics as they act as helpful bacteria that boost gut health.
These are just some of the surprising health benefits that can be derived from taking turkey tail mushrooms. For sure, as more research is continued to be done on the subject matter, more benefits can still be discovered on what turkey tail mushroom can offer. At present, this type of fungi provides amazing health benefits – from boosting the immune system, providing antioxidants, supplementing certain cancer treatments to improving gut health. Thus, it’s best to try and find out for yourself the benefits this mushroom can offer.