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Turkey Tail Mushroom Guide: Health Benefits and Ways to Use This Superfood

Turkey Tail Mushroom Guide: Health Benefits and Ways to Use This Superfood

by Amy Myszko

September 16, 2021

immune support, mighty broths, powders, turkey tail

Functional mushrooms have been used in Eastern medicine and other ancient healing modalities for thousands of years. Many herbal formulas incorporate functional mushrooms for their unique immune-supporting, antioxidant, and healthy-aging properties. The turkey tail mushroom, whose shape and swirling variegated colors resemble the tail of a wild turkey, has recently garnered a lot of public attention due to studies that demonstrate its ability to support immune function and gut health. 

 


Read on to learn more about the history and benefits of the turkey tail mushroom, as well as easy ways to incorporate it into your wellness and vitality routine.

The History of the Turkey Tail Mushroom

In the wild, turkey tail, also known as Trametes versicolor or Coriolus versicolor, grows on dead hardwood trees throughout the world. Don’t be fooled by the name, however, because turkey tail is 100-percent vegan and doesn’t contain any animal parts. Its distinctive layered stripes of brown, tan, gray, and white can be stunning. Inspired by its natural beauty, the Japanese call it “kawaritake,” or “cloud mushroom,” due to its resemblance to swirling clouds.

Learn about the history and benefits of the turkey tail mushroom, as well as easy ways to incorporate it into your wellness and vitality routine.

In many Asian cultures, turkey tail symbolizes longevity and health, spiritual attunement, and infinity. Known in Chinese culture as Tun Zhi, it has been used for centuries by practitioners of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) as an immunomodulator that supports immune function and helps fight infections. Many have brewed turkey tail into a soothing tea to clear dampness, increase energy, and strengthen the lungs, stomach, and spleen. This functional mushroom’s ability to support the health of both an underactive and overactive immune system is unique and long valued among physicians of traditional medicine. 

Understanding the Health and Wellness Benefits of Turkey Tail

One of the most researched of all functional mushrooms, turkey tail is in a class of its own. It is known in particular for its potent natural polysaccharides, including polysaccharide K (PSK) and polysaccharide peptide (PSP). These protein-bound polysaccharides help to support a healthy and robust immune response as well as manage the inflammatory response at the cellular level.

Turkey tail also features a broad array of naturally occurring compounds that help to improve stamina and support gut health, which, in turn, correlates with a healthy immune system. It is packed with antioxidants, including powerful flavonoids and more than 35 phenols. They promote immune system health by helping to manage inflammation and by stimulating the release of immune-supportive compounds. It’s also replete in prebiotics, which help nourish the beneficial bacteria in the gut and assist in the restoration of a balance of good flora in the gastrointestinal tract, supporting improved digestion and healthy immune response.‡

A Guide to the Health and Wellness Benefits of Turkey Tail Mushrooms

Bioactive Component

Action

Health and Wellness Benefit

Polysaccharides, especially PSP, PSK

Immune support

Prebiotic fiber promotes a healthy gut microbiome, supporting the immunological barrier that helps the immune system to protect against disease.

Phenols and flavonoids

Antioxidant and anti-aging

Antioxidants combat oxidative stress that can damage tissues, causing chronic illness and premature aging.

YZP protein isolated from turkey tail fruiting bodies

Anti-inflammatory

Anti-inflammatory activity has been demonstrated against acute colitis in tissue culture and animal studies.

Protein-bound Beta-glucans

May reduce obesity

Beta-glucans from turkey tail supported a gut microbiome that reduced obesity in animal research.

Ways to Incorporate Turkey Tail Mushrooms into Your Routine

Turkey tail, like all functional mushrooms, truly shines when you take it daily (whether in food, as a tea, or in supplements). Though it has a mild, earthy flavor and is considered an edible mushroom, due to its slightly leathery texture, turkey tail is typically consumed in powdered form. In many cultures, the turkey tail mushroom appears in soups or teas that are consumed to support and regulate the immune system and improve overall health and wellness.

With a mild taste that some describe as slightly sweet, turkey tail powder is an easy ingredient to mix into a main dish, snack, dessert, or beverage of your choice. In the winter, stir it into bone broth, soup, oatmeal or hot tea; in the summer, feel free to blend it with a smoothie or even whisk it into a salad dressing. It is available as a single-species supplement or in multi-mushroom blends.

Select Turkey Tail Mushroom Products from Om Mushroom Superfood

Single species

Blend

Dose

Product

Supports

2g (1t.) per day

Turkey Tail Mushroom Powder 

Versatile powder supports the immune system and gut health

3 caps per day

Turkey Tail Mushroom Capsules

Convenient capsules support the immune system and gut health

2.5g blend per powder stick

Immune+ Mushroom Drink Mix (Blend of four mushroom species plus vitamin C and probiotic strains)

Superberry-flavored, single serving, powder stick packets mix with water to create a cold beverage that provides a broad-spectrum immune system and probiotic support for gut health

3.61g blend per serving

Mighty Mushroom Broth (Blend of six superfood mushroom species enriched with plant-based protein, herbs, and spices)

Single serving packets mix with warm water to create a nourishing, flavorful broth that supports immune health and overall wellness

It’s important to mention that not all superfood mushrooms are created equal. Om Mushroom offers a number of turkey tail supplements, including organic whole food mushroom powders, convenient capsule form, and naturally-flavored drink mix powders to add to water. Each product contains the full spectrum of nutrients and bioactive substances from turkey tail mushroom mycelial biomass and primordia (baby fruiting bodies) to support the immune system and an active lifestyle. If you’re ready to make the leap to proactive health and vitality, Om Mushroom Superfood is a great place to access the benefits of these functional mushrooms.

Om Mushroom offers products created from functional, whole food, organic mushrooms that have life-changing health benefits. Our products contain the proper turkey tail mushroom dosage to support your body’s natural immune functions. If you’re looking to take advantage of the benefits of functional mushroom products, shop now or subscribe to save!

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