Why Turkey Tail ?
Coriolus versicolor (Turkey Tail) is probably the most intensively researched mushroom ever (since the 1970s). Below we’ve listed the main research subject*.
Take notice: this should not be interpreted as a list of medical claims!
For a more extensive background click here ( page opens in new window ).
The potential to normalize the immune function
Beta-glucan is the main active ingredient in Turkey Tail (Coriolus versicolor / Trametes versicolor are the official names). To be more precise: beta-glucan linked to a peptide to form bioactive proteo-glycans/glyco-proteins. (The old name is Poly-Saccharo-Peptide: PSP or PSK).
PSP has been used often during and after treatments such as chemo and radiation-therapy with the following recorded effects:
• Improves symptoms of weakness, fatigue, poor appetite, nausea and vomiting, insomnia , anxiety, pain, night sweat etc.
A shared property of all medicinal mushrooms is immune-modulation: research has been investigating their potential to normalize our natural resistance against diseases for many decades.
Although undeniable proof has not yet been presented the outcome of research is promising. Turkey Tail has been investigated in particular as an adjuvant during anti-cancer therapy (chemo, radiation) and several clinical trials showed the effects mentioned above. The quality of life of patients during and after treatment improved significantly. For details, please check this pdf or go to our resources page for more publications.
A quote from that linked research report: “[…] these individuals report feeling improvement in their general condition, appetite, energy level, and ability to digest food. As a biological response modifier, PSP may help them to improve or maintain their immune status while decreasing the severity of the side effects associated with chemo-therapy and radiation. Its safety profile also makes it an ideal adjunct therapy to help in the treatment of cancer.”
Two terms are applicable here:
• adaptogenic (helping us to adapt to the never-ending assaults on our health)
• BRM (a natural Biological Response Modifier – stimulating the body’s natural defense mechanisms without any side effects).
Medicinal mushrooms do not cure or heal, they help the body to heal itself.
The anti-inflammatory and anti-viral potential
These are of course overlapping the immune-modulating properties. Responsible for this therapeutic potential are the beta-glucan fractions and the proteo-glycans: glucans linked to proteins, a compound that was called ‘PSP’ or ‘PSK’ in older research.
The water-soluble beta-glucans in particular have triggered the interest of scientists: in the EU several health-claims based on beta-glucans have been ratified in the past years by the EFSA. Beta-glucans are e.g. thought to help with immune support and with normalizing of cholesterol levels.
Quite rare: Turkey Tail contains two different types of beta-glucan: both (1>4)(1>6)beta-glucan and the common (1>3)(1>6)beta-glucan.
Harmful micro-organisms, bacteria and viruses should be neutralized by the immune system before they can cause infections and inflammations. Existing infections etc. will last considerably shorter if the immune system is functioning at its peak level. For additional background visit our ‘resources‘ page and our frequently asked questions page.
Effects on Hepatitis C and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
In particular in SE-Asia, where Hepatitis is much more common and many people are carrier of the disease, extracts from this mushroom are used to control Hepatitis and related liver diseases.
The results are appearantly good. The immune-modulating potential probably plays an important role here, but research also points towards a direct liver-protecting effect. This is one of the reasons this supplement is used often to support standard treatments which involve powerful pharmaceuticals with potential liver-damaging side effects, such as chemo-therapy.
Side effects and safety
Turkey Tail extracts have no noteworthy side effects. The lack of side effects is due to the fact that mushroom extracts work mainly in an indirect way: as a natural BRM (a Biological Response Modifier – stimulating the body’s natural defense mechanisms).
There is no potential disturbance of the body’s chemical and hormonal balance. This makes medicinal mushrooms extracts ideal dietary supplements for everybody.
The only contra-indications are immune-suppressing medicines (e.g. after a transplant). Never use medicinal mushroom extracts together with this type of medication – the immune modulating potential might neutralize its workings.
There are also reports that PSP extracts might increase the risk of hypoglycemia (blood sugar levels that fall too low) in people that are sensitive to that, such as those taking diabetes medicines like insulin. Taking it together with some sugar-containing beverage such as fresh juice will help.
Keywords: Coriolus Versicolor, Trametes Versicolor, Kawaratake, Yun Zhi, Turkey Tail, PSP, PSK.
Why choose ORIVeDA ‘s PSP-50 ?
Oriveda PSP-50 is the most potent Turkey Tail extract commercially available. It is also the only fully certified extract worldwide, with guaranteed levels of the main bioactive and bioavailable compounds.
In Turkey Tail the main bioactive compounds are beta-glucans (2 different types) and polyphenols (anti-oxidants).
We can guarantee the presence of these compounds and their bioavailability. Check the Quality Control page on this website.
Click here to see our authorized ‘Supplement Facts’ label, which is based on those test reports.
PSP is an abbreviation of ‘PolySaccharoPeptide’: now in general known as ‘proteo-glycan’. ORIVeDA’s PSP-50 is identical to the original PSP as it was developed in China, over 25 years ago. In itself PSP is an improved version of the well-known Japanese PSK, which is even older. (See our FAQ for the differences / similarities between these two)
ORIVeDA’s PSP-50 has been cultivated and extracted using the original methods. The only difference is a significant higher purity due to the more advanced 21st century pharmaceutical techniques. Only pure COV-1® mycelium (the ‘roots’ of the mushroom) was used for the extract, having the highest level of the desired bioactives.
According to the original research the most potent source of ‘PSP’ is that COV-1® mycelium strain (more details here) which should ideally have been cultivated using so-called ‘deep layer cultivation’ (growing it in sterile laboratory tanks, in liquid substrate). This technique is standard in China but hardly used anywhere else, due to the high cost.
Cheap cultivation techniques are using rice/grains to grow mushrooms (solid substrate), but since it is impossible to isolate the spiderweb-like mycelium from the substrate in the end the final product is in fact ‘biomass’, not mushroom. It is contaminated with undigested substrate in the form of starch; levels can be as high as 80% (!).
Such products are not per definition without potential but in general their actual therapeutic effects are low and the value for money is poor. On top of that these products are in general not extracted, rendering them even less useful. They do not specify any bioactive compounds on their labels and a 2016 test report showed many of these product contained no beta-glucan at all, only starch. Research found that the immunological effects of mushroom extracts are up to 10 times higher when compared against non-extracted powders.
An objective and easy-to-follow mushroom supplement shopping-guideline can be found on our articles page. It explains facts like the above and others, good to know when shopping for mushroom supplements.
Recommended maintenance dosage: 3 capsules p/day. A leaflet with detailed instructions and background is included with every order.
Scientific research uses in general specialized, highly concentrated extracts to investigate the effects of medicinal mushrooms. ORIVeDA extracts are comparable in both composition and quality, so the research results you read about you can also expect from our extracts.
Extracted using hot water extraction followed by alcohol precipitation, identical to the original methodology.
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- 180 v-caps @ 350 mg
- (2 months regular use)
- > 22 % polypeptides
- > 35 % beta-glucan
- > 1.4 % polyphenols
- • hot water extract •
- ISO 9001:2008
- ISO 22000:2005
- and also
- USDA organic (EcoCert)