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Turkey Tail Mushrooms: 6 Benefits & Uses

Turkey tail mushroom benefits your health in a variety of fantastic ways, including boosting your immune system. This curious mushroom is named for the colorful stripes it contains. Just as it's been used for centuries in Traditional Chinese Medicine, these medicinal mushrooms continue to be medically beneficial today.

Unlike shiitake mushrooms, turkey tail mushrooms contain small pores that release spores. They can flourish just about anywhere in the world, as long as there are trees nearby. In fact, they often grow on fallen tree trunks in the forest. Depending on your geographical location, you may have passed them by, not knowing what they are or what health benefits they offer.

And truly, their benefits are outstanding! As mentioned above, turkey tail mushroom benefits include the ability to boost the immune system, but they also can help combat breast cancer, aid in digestion, and more.

Turkey Tail Mushroom Tea

While there are many ways in which you can enjoy this mushroom, one way is to make a turkey tail mushroom tea. Here at, we use many medicinal mushrooms to make healthy teas, and turkey tail is certainly among them. The flavor of this tea can be on the bitter side, but you can add ingredients like turmeric and honey to help balance out the taste.

To reap the benefits of this turkey tail mushroom tea, try to drink at least one, if not two eight-ounce glasses of it per day. And in this particular recipe, you also soak in the health benefits of raw honey as well as turmeric.

How to Make Turkey Tail Mushroom Tea

  • 1 cup chopped turkey tail mushroom
  • 5 cups purified water
  • 2.5 teaspoons ground turmeric
  • ½ teaspoon raw, local honey
  • 1 drop lemon essential oil
  1. Cut the turkey tail mushroom into small pieces.
  2. Add pieces a large pot of water on the stove.
  3. Bring the water to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for an hour.
  4. Strain the mixture.
  5. Add a 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground turmeric and the honey, stir.
  6. Stir in lemon essential oil.
  7. Pour one serving of tea into a cup and enjoy!

Turkey Tail Mushroom Benefits

1. Prevents and Treats the Common Cold and Flu

Turkey tail mushroom benefits include the ability to prevent the common cold or flu. If you're usually one to catch whatever bug is going around, you should consider adding turkey tail mushrooms to your diet. For example, you might consider sipping on turkey tail mushroom tea in order to help you survive cold and flu season. These amazing mushrooms are nutrient-dense, making them a fantastic choice to help keep you healthy.

The nutrients in turkey tail mushrooms naturally boost the immune system and help fight off germs, which can be especially helpful during cold and flu season. Adding turkey tail mushrooms to your diet can help your body fight infections, illnesses and diseases more effectively.

2. Offers Support to Chemo Patients

Concerning cancer treatment, the benefits of turkey tail mushrooms are twofold. One, these mushrooms help the body fight off diseases, including cancer. A strong immune system helps set up your body to better protect itself against that which seeks to do it harm. It is for this reason that turkey tail mushrooms are considered a cancer-fighting food. Furthermore, turkey tail mushroom benefits include the ability to support chemotherapy patients.

Stronger Immunity = Stronger Body

Research has shown that turkey tail extract can benefit cancer patients who are undergoing chemotherapy. Chemotherapy can take its toll on the body, such as suppressing the immune system. However, studies suggest that turkey tail mushroom benefits include the ability to boost the immune system and help the body combat the weakness caused by chemotherapy.

3. Combats Breast Cancer

Turkey tail mushroom benefits also include the ability to combat breast cancer. Truly, nature sometimes offers us the best medicine. And quite often, Westernized medicine can be augmented and bettered by incorporating less conventional methods. For example, consider the following incredible story.

According to a study published in Global Advances in Health and Medicine, a woman who was diagnosed with advanced, metastatic inflammatory breast cancer was cancer-free after using turkey tail mushroom. Researchers believe that turkey tail mushroom benefits include the ability to naturally fight disease and provide the body with anti-cancer properties. (1)

They surmised that the turkey tail mushroom fortified the woman's immune system, which helped recognize the tumor and as a result, increased the intended effect of the chemotherapy.

Turkey tail mushroom benefits

4. Helps Treat HPV

Mushrooms in general are excellent for treating infections. However turkey tail mushroom benefits in particular include the ability to help heal infections and also include treating the human papillomavirus.

Consider the following. One study found that out of 61 patients with gum disease and HPV, 88% of the patients who received turkey tail and reishi mushrooms showed positive results after two months of treatment. (2)

This leads to another benefit, as well. This is because in some cases, oral HPV can lead to cancers of the mouth. In this way, then, turkey tail mushrooms can also be considered cancer-preventative.

5. Aids in Digestion

If you suffer from leaky gut syndrome or another digestive disorder, turkey tail mushrooms may be able to help in the healing process. In many cases, leaky gut is caused by a poor diet. So while turkey tail may help correct this issue, without changing poor eating habits, you might not see much of a difference.

However, turkey tail mushroom benefits do include the ability to support healthy digestion. The mushrooms contain mycelium, which promotes a smoother digestive process. Turkey tail mushrooms also contain prebiotics that help fill the gut with beneficial bacteria. Prebiotics are beneficial for those suffering from leaky gut syndrome and other digestive issues.

6. Helps Patients With HIV/AIDS

Research shows that turkey tail mushroom benefits include the ability to help patients with HIV and AIDS. When used with another wild medicinal mushroom, the East African mushroom, turkey tail mushrooms can help treat patients with a skin cancer called Kaposi's sarcoma.

Patients with HIV and AIDS are often diagnosed with Kaposi's sarcoma. Turkey tail mushrooms also possess natural antibacterial and antioxidant properties. Adding the mushrooms to your diet can help strengthen the immune system and protect the body from bacteria and viruses, including the HIV virus. (3)

Turkey Tail Mushroom Identification

With so many mushroom varieties available, how do you know a turkey tail mushroom when you see one? You likely know better than to eat any mushroom you find in the forest. But you may have interest in becoming a mushroom hunter.

Unless you want to wind up violently ill or worse, gathering and subsequently consuming wild mushrooms requires a certain level of expertise. You shouldn't eat a wild mushroom unless you know, without a doubt, that it will not harm you.

However, while you should always exercise extreme caution when harvesting mushrooms, there are a few turkey tail mushroom identifying markers to help you better understand what this mushroom looks like.

For example, here are some of the traits of the turkey tail mushroom:

  1. Has pores on the underside of the mushroom visible to the naked eye (Note: there are turkey tail mushrooms lookalikes, which may exhibit a maze-like pore pattern rather than one that is more evenly spread.),
  2. Has 3 to 8 pores per millimeter (you'll have to squint for this),
  3. Sports a fuzzy or velvety cap
  4. And is thin and flexible, rather than rigid and hard.

Watch this video to learn more about the amazing medicinal turkey tail mushroom!