Traditional Chinese medicine has tapped into the potential of functional mushrooms for millennia, and the world is now catching on to their incredible properties. Traditionally, Turkey Tail mushroom has been used to enhance the immune system, alleviate stress, and serve as a natural energy source, among a host of other advantages.
One advantage you may not have considered, however, is the benefits of Turkey Tail mushroom for your skin. So, we’re going to dive deep into the literature to explain everything you need to know about turkey tail benefits for skin, how to use it, and how to choose great mushroom supplements.
Table of Contents
- Turkey Tail Mushroom hydrates and rejuvenates skin cells, providing a fresh, youthful glow.
- Rich in antioxidants, this mushroom fights free radicals and inflammation, contributing to anti-aging benefits for your skin.
- Both internal and topical Turkey Tail use can benefit the skin, and both methods can be used together for a full-coverage skincare routine.
What is Turkey Tail?
Turkey Tail Mushroom, scientifically known as Trametes versicolor, is a common mushroom found in many parts of the world. Its name comes from its striking resemblance to a turkey's tail with its vibrant, multi-colored rings on the cap. But its beauty is not just skin deep—this mushroom offers an array of potential benefits.
This marvelous mushroom holds within it a duo of polysaccharides—PSK and PSP—that boast promising capabilities in fighting cancer. In fact, the isolated PSK is a powerhouse, wielding such potency that it's actively used as an adjunct cancer treatment in Japan.
We’ll touch a bit on Turkey Tail’s complete health potential, but we really want to look at one mysterious, but advancing use–Turkey Tail skin benefits:
The Skin-Deep Connection: How Turkey Tail Mushroom Works in Skincare
Turkey Tail Mushroom is like a superhero for your skin! It contains a powerful lineup of natural compounds, including polysaccharides, beta-glucans (like the aforementioned PSK and PSP), and antioxidants. These elements team up to support your skin's health and radiance in various ways.
When you consume Turkey Tail Mushroom, these compounds work their magic from the inside out. They help boost your immune system, promoting overall well-being and contributing to a healthy complexion. Think of it as your skin's trusty sidekick, fighting off any unwanted intruders that could dull your glow.
In other words, Turkey Tail’s skin benefits are a bit indirect–think less about topical spot treatments and more about the systemic benefits that could promote overall skin health. For instance, turkey tail may improve various aspects of gut health and hydration, help prevent free-radical damage, and prevent the inflammatory response that’s behind acne and blemishes.
We’ll break it down, plus highlight the research available to help us understand the benefits of turkey tail for your skin.
Benefits of Turkey Tail Mushroom for Your Skin
1. Reduced Oxidative Stress (Anti-Aging Benefits)
Oxidative stress, in simple terms, is like a troublemaker causing havoc at the cellular level. It's the trouble that starts small but can escalate into bigger issues like inflammation and persistent health problems. Evidence suggests that oxidative stress speeds up the aging process, which can negatively impact skin health.
Luckily, Turkey Tail may offer a resolve. This mushroom is a powerhouse boasting flavonoids, phenols, and other mighty antioxidants. These superheroes step up to shield your body from harmful free radicals, the culprits behind oxidative stress. Thanks to its antioxidant profile, Turkey Tail may offer a broad spectrum of health benefits, ranging from improved skin and hair to an improved overall sense of well-being.
2. Reduced Inflammation and Redness
Inflammation and redness can be a bummer for your skin's appearance. It’s actually linked to various chronic conditions, as well as many skin conditions, like acne, psoriasis, and many signs of aging.
Thanks to its ability to fight oxidative stress, Turkey Tail Mushroom is known for its anti-inflammatory properties, lending it the ability to calm down redness and irritation. In fact, many of the flavonoids in Turkey Tail may help to combat inflammation at the cellular level.
According to evidence, Quercetin, one potent flavonoid found in turkey tail, may help to reduce chronic and acute inflammation. That means it may have benefits as a spot treatment and as a daily preventative treatment.
3. Enhanced Skin Hydration
Just like a well-watered garden flourishes, your skin thrives on hydration. The polysaccharides found in Turkey Tail Mushroom act as moisture magnets, helping your skin retain hydration.
According to research, quercetin, a compound found in turkey tail, may help restore skin barrier function. The skin barrier is responsible for locking in hydration and for absorbing topicals, so it plays a huge role in hydration and overall skin health.
Quercetin has also been found to restore human dermal fibroblasts (HDFs), a compound that makes up skin connective tissue. This may be beneficial for improving skin healing, collagen production, and elastin secretion, which can prevent signs of aging.
4. Improved Gut Health
It’s becoming more well-known that gut health directly impacts skin health and plays a role in various inflammatory skin conditions. Luckily, if you incorporate turkey tail mushroom into your diet, whether in its whole form or as a convenient powder, you unlock a dual benefit for your gut health: dietary fiber and prebiotics.
Dietary fiber is a digestive champion, promoting regular bowel movements and benefiting your gut's beneficial bacteria. Furthermore, it lends a helping hand to your heart's health.
Turkey tail contains the beta-glucan PSP (short for polysaccharopeptide), a fiber that acts as a prebiotic. Prebiotics play a vital role in nourishing the beneficial bacteria residing in your digestive tract.
If you’re already following a skin-healthy diet rich in fruits and vegetables, you’ll want to look at your gut health to ensure that your body is making use of all of the polyphenols, flavonoids, and antioxidants you’re intaking.
How Do You Use Turkey Tail Mushrooms for Skin?
Achieving the best for your skin with turkey tail mushroom involves a two-pronged approach—utilizing it topically and integrating it internally through high-quality supplements. This holistic method maximizes the potential benefits for your skin.
When it comes to topical application, using turkey tail mushroom in skincare products or creating DIY masks can be incredibly beneficial. The mushroom's natural compounds, such as antioxidants and polysaccharides, can nourish and rejuvenate your skin when applied directly. Think of it as giving your skin a direct infusion of the mushroom's skin-loving goodness.
However, for a comprehensive approach, incorporating turkey tail internally through high-quality supplements is equally important. These supplements provide a concentrated and standardized dose of the mushroom's bioactive compounds, ensuring that you receive a consistent supply of the beneficial elements that support your skin from within.
By combining both topical use and internal supplementation, you create a synergistic effect. It's like having a powerhouse team working both inside and outside to enhance your skin's health, leaving you with a radiant and vibrant complexion.
How to Choose a High-Quality Mushroom Supplement
When choosing a mushroom supplement for pain relief, ensure it's from a reputable source. Look for supplements that have undergone rigorous testing for purity, potency, and quality. Check for certifications, and consult with healthcare professionals to determine the best supplement and dosage for your needs.
Here are key factors to weigh:
Whole Mushroom Powder vs. Mushroom Extract
- Whole Mushroom Powder: This form includes the entire mushroom, retaining all its natural nutrients and compounds. While akin to consuming a whole fruit, whole mushroom powder may lack the necessary beta glucans that provide therapeutic benefits.
- Mushroom Extract: Extracts are concentrated and contain specific anxiety-alleviating compounds. The extraction process enhances bioavailability, ensuring consistent and potent results. However, extracts often omit the fiber and other nutritional components found in whole mushroom products.
Fruiting Body Supplements vs. Mycelium Supplements
- Fruiting Body Supplements: Derived from the mature part of the mushroom, fruiting body supplements are richer in the sought-after therapeutic compounds, making them ideal for addressing health concerns.
- Mycelium Supplements: Mycelium, the mushroom's root system, may not offer the same anxiety-relief benefits as fruiting body supplements. Some companies use mycelium to reduce costs, but this may compromise the therapeutic potential.
Labeling and Transparency
When choosing a mushroom supplement for anxiety, prioritize transparency and thorough product information:
- Look for supplements from reputable manufacturers that provide clear details about sourcing, extraction methods, and quality control practices.
- Ensure the label specifies the mushroom species used, whether it's whole mushroom powder or an extract, and the source (fruiting body or mycelium).
- Aim for a beta glucan content of around 20% or more for effective anxiety support.
- Verify third-party testing for purity and potency.
Opting for products with transparent labeling empowers you to make an informed decision and trust the quality of your chosen mushroom supplement.
The Final Word: Unlocking Your Skin's Potential with Turkey Tail Mushroom
If you want to take full advantage of the "functional" side of functional mushrooms, consider a mushroom super-blend like our Lucid Coffee, Chai, or Matcha powders. It takes full advantage of the benefits of these superfood mushrooms by pairing Cordyceps, Maitake, Tremella, and Lion's Mane, plus powerful nootropics, like BCAA's, L-Theanine, Alpha-GPC, and more.
- “Free radicals, antioxidants and functional foods: Impact on human health” https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3249911/
- “Antigenotoxic Effect of Trametes spp. Extracts against DNA Damage on Human Peripheral White Blood Cells” https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4517545/
- “Chronic inflammation in the etiology of disease across the life span” https://www.nature.com/articles/s41591-019-0675-0
- “Flavonoids, Inflammation and Immune System” https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/27294919/
- “Flavonoids as Cytokine Modulators: A Possible Therapy for Inflammation-Related Diseases” https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/27294919/
- “Soothing and anti-itch effect of quercetin phytosome in human subjects: a single-blind study” https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4777224/
- “Restoring Effects of Natural Anti-Oxidant Quercetin on Cellular Senescent Human Dermal Fibroblasts”https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/29737207/
- “Gut–Skin Axis: Current Knowledge of the Interrelationship between Microbial Dysbiosis and Skin Conditions” https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7916842/
- “Cholesterol-lowering effects of oat β-glucan” https://academic.oup.com/nutritionreviews/article/69/6/299/1815168