What is PSK?
PSK (Polysaccharide-K) is a complex carbohydrate molecule that is found in various adaptogenic mushrooms, including the turkey tail mushroom (Trametes versicolor) and the reishi mushroom (Ganoderma lucidum). Some other mushrooms, such as shiitake (Lentinula edodes) and maitake (Grifola frondosa), are also known to contain polysaccharides with similar properties to PSK.
It is a complex carbohydrate molecule that is known for its strong immunomodulatory effects, which means it has the ability to regulate the immune system. PSK has been shown to stimulate the immune response by increasing the production and activity of immune cells, such as T cells and natural killer cells, and by regulating the release of cytokines and other signalling molecules. In addition to its immune-boosting effects, PSK is also known for its potent anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, which may help to protect against cellular damage and reduce the risk of various diseases.
In addition to mushrooms, polysaccharides with similar properties to PSK have also been found in some other plant sources, including algae, lichens, and mosses. However, the content of these polysaccharides in these other plant sources is generally lower compared to adaptogenic mushrooms, and the health benefits and effectiveness of these polysaccharides in these other plant sources have not been well studied.
Over the years, PSK has been extensively researched for its potential health benefits, and it has been used as an adjuvant treatment in various forms of cancer, including lung, gastric, and colorectal cancer, among others. Additionally, PSK is also used as a complementary treatment for various other health conditions, such as infections, cardiovascular disease, and neurological disorders.