The turkey tail mushroom is not just an interesting-looking mushroom, it has incredible health benefits too. The disk-shaped mushroom named after a turkey due to its similar appearance is found in different parts of the world.
Turkey Tail has been extensively studied for its immune health boosting properties as well as impressive cancer fighting results.
With new research developing each day, turkey tail has become of great interested not just to for humans but for dogs too.
What is Turkey Tail?
The turkey tail mushroom, also known as Trametes versicolor or Coriolus versicolor has immune health boosting benefits and has been studied extensively for a variety of health boosting benefits.
The mushrooms medicinal benefits lie within the components Polysaccharides-P (PSP) and Polysaccharides-K (PSK). These components are both beta-D-glucans, and they make up the structure of the mushroom's cells.
Beta-D-glucans link to receptors that are in immune cells, hence triggering immune changes. These immune changes can either increase some immune cells or restore immunity. This direct interaction with your dog's immune system is what makes these components so great. Beta D Glucans are where all the incredible benefits come from.
They assist your dogs body to:
- Increase immune function if the immune system is under stress due to chronic illness.
- Restore a dog’s immune function if an autoimmune disease plagued it.
- Balance Immune function in overacting immune systems
- Reduce inflammation in a hyperactive immune system.
Benefits of Turkey Tail
The turkey tail mushrooms has gained immense popularity in the world of natural medicine. It has shown incredible results for dogs fighting cancer as well as other health benefits too:
Improves and balances immune health
The beta-glucans help boosts immune function and balances it to help prevent autoimmune diseases. It is important that an immune system is not merely boosted but also balanced, which is exactly what turkey tail helps with.
Excessively boosting the immune system may cause an overreaction hence leading to disorders. An example of this may be rheumatoid arthritis. It is caused by an excessively powerful immune system that adapts to protect the body from diseases.
A balanced immune system is active enough to fight off diseases but does not overreact to cause inflammations and other disorders. Turkey tail helps maintain a healthy immune system by regulating what needs to be controlled and creating an ideal balance. Turkey tail is thus great for dogs suffering from autoimmune disease. This means that your dog can fight off:
-Improves digestive health
Turkey Tail contains beta-glucans and prebiotics, which help your dog's digestive system by regulating inflammatory responses and boosting the immune system. In addition, prebiotics promotes the growth of helpful bacteria within the digestive system and help produce vitamins and reduce digestive inflammation.
Turkey tail extract helps increase Bifidobacterium and Lactobacillus, beneficial bacteria that help prevent diarrhoea and improve digestion. It also helps to protect against harmful bacteria like Clostridium and Staphylococcus.
Rich in antioxidants
Antioxidants help reduce oxidative stress, which causes damage to the body. Oxidants and unstable molecules, known as free radicals, usually cause an imbalance in the body leading to oxidative stress.
Turkey Tail has antioxidants like flavonoids and phenols. Flavonoids and phenols promote immunity by preventing inflammation.
Fight excessive yeast
Yeast helps in the digestion of food. However, if your dog has too much yeast, the below symptoms may appear:
The turkey tail mushroom possesses antifungal properties. The properties help in keeping yeast at normal levels to prevent yeast infections.
A study found that the Polysaccharides found in turkey tail can suppress hemangiosarcoma and increases survival time.
During the study, dogs from a veterinary hospital received Polysaccharide-P from turkey tail. All the dogs in the study were diagnosed with hemangiosarcoma and two blind studies were conducted.
Upon analyzing the results, the dogs that were given the PSP did not reach metastasis until much later than the dogs that were not given PSP. The study showed that the dogs survival times was longer as the doses increased.
The dogs that did not receive the treatment survived for 86 days. Dogs that ingested 50mg-kg per day of the turkey tail survived for 117 days, while those that ingested 100mg-kg per day survived 199 days.
Another study was conducted on tumor-bearing mice, which showed incredible results of the tumor sizes reducing significantly as well as improvements to immune responses.
Improves the efficacy of cancer treatments
Studies have shown that giving patients turkey tail daily in conjunction with conventional cancer treatments helped to increase the survival rate.
A study which included 8000 patients with stomach cancer, showed that those treated with PSK alongside chemotherapy survived longer than those treated with chemotherapy only.
Did you know that Japan and China have approved the use of PSP as an anti-cancer drug. This is an exciting development inn the world of medicinal mushrooms.
Reduces the side effects of chemotherapy
Unfortunately one of the big side effects of chemotherapy is a weakened immune system, leaving your dog vulnerable to diseases and infections.
By keeping immune health strong and balanced, your dog can not only possibly experience reduced fatigue but also be protected from other diseases and infections, as well as ensuring that the boosted immune system can continue fighting off the cancer.
How much should I give my Dog?
The recommended dosage is ½ teaspoon per 11kg dog.
Please bare in mind that it is always important when introducing a new product to your dogs diet, to consult with your vet, especially if your dog is undergoing other therapy. It will be important for your vet to know of any changes.