If you’re of a certain age, you’re likely already familiar with the fact that one of the first outward signs of aging occurs on the skin. Although we can’t reverse the aging process completely, we can put a serious dent in the skin wrinkling, sagging, and blotchiness that comes with getting older. One way to do so safely is with the polysaccharide power of Tremella fuciformis, an edible white, jelly-like mushroom also commonly known as silver ear, snow fungus, and the “beauty mushroom.”
Tremella Fuciformis Health Benefits for Both Inside & Out
You may already be familiar with the health benefits of many different kinds of medicinal mushrooms (fungi) and may even use some of them yourself. If you do, then you know how amazing mushrooms can be for energy, the immune system, for brain health, and so much more.
Of course, all the goodness that mushrooms provide you on the inside of your body absolutely makes a difference in how you look on the outside as well. Mushrooms can help with three functions vital for healthy, vibrant looking skin:
- nutrient absorption
- collagen production
When a person is healthy overall, it most definitely shows on the outside. On the other hand, much medical literature has made the connection between poor health in general and skin conditions such as acne , drab, dull-looking skin, splotches, rashes, and more.
The anti-viral, infection-fighting nature of most medicinal mushrooms helps your skin in many indirect ways. Shiitake, turkey tail, and maitake mushrooms, for instance, all possess anti-inflammatory properties and also contain powerful antioxidants and key nutrients such as essential fatty acids and vitamin D .
But some medicinal mushrooms have components within them that seem to be specifically designed to benefit the skin. One of the best-known medicinal mushrooms that can help in this regard is Tremella fuciformis.
A Brief History of Tremella Fuciformis in Skincare
There are several substances inside tremella mushrooms that lend to its nickname as the “beauty mushroom.” It’s also called “silver ear mushroom” or “snow mushroom” or “white snow mushroom” because of its creamy white color and spongy shape.
In fact, tremella has been included in beautifying tonics and lotions for centuries. One of the reportedly “most beautiful women in Chinese history” was Yang Guifei, who lived in the 8th century during the Tang Dynasty. She was said to have attributed her glowing complexion to her use of Tremella fuciformis .
So what makes this gelatinous fungi so special when it comes to age-reversing and skin revitalization? Let’s zoom in a little closer to look at what modern science has to say about white snow fungus benefits.
Tremella Fuciformis Polysaccharides
Polysaccharides are large molecules that are made up of many smaller sugar molecules. They are found in dozens of foods, especially carbohydrate-heavy grains and tubers as well as fungi.
There is a multitude of kinds of polysaccharide groupings that exist in nature. Many of them are particularly beneficial for different aspects of human health. The polysaccharides found in the silver ear mushroom, for instance, are perfectly suited for skin health.
Other Tremella Fuciformis Mushroom Benefits Include Antioxidants
First of all, the polysaccharides in tremella contain strong antioxidant properties. Antioxidant substances can protect the skin from oxidative stress of all kinds, including from the sun.
Polysaccharides in Tremella fuciformis can also be the catalysts for enzymatic reactions which reduce free radical damage. Some of the scavenging properties of both fungi-generated polysaccharides and the enzymatic reactions they influence are so powerful they’ve been shown in animal studies to inhibit cancer tumor growth!
The antioxidant properties in white snow fungus can also help protect against and repair damage caused by harmful UV rays. A 2014 study published in the journal Food Science took a look at the polysaccharides within Tremella fuciformis and how they were able to reduce the effects of sun-induced aging on the skin.
Researchers found that Tremella polysaccharides high in uronic acid helped to minimize collagen loss that was specifically caused by UV radiation. They also found that these polysaccharides rehydrated sun-damaged skin and worked towards repairing “skin structure alternations” caused by photodamage .
What Is Uronic Acid?
Uronic acid is a sugar substance that plays a vital role in efficient metabolism. Another antioxidant component found in snow fungus polysaccharides is mannose.
Mannose is also a sugar which is often taken as a stand-alone supplement (in the form of D-mannose) for urinary tract infections (UTIs) and metabolic disorders .
Snow Fungus Benefits for Skin: Hydration Similar to Hyaluronic Acid
Another Tremella fuciformis polysaccharide benefit has to do with the way the polysaccharides keep moisture in, helping your skin stay hydrated.
Tremella polysaccharides hydrate by pulling moisture from outside into the skin. This is why some experts say that this white snow fungus acts much like hyaluronic acid. Hyaluronic acid is a lubricating substance that our bodies produce naturally.
Hyaluronic acid is clear and jelly-like and is found in large amounts in the skin, eyes, and connective tissue. Its job is to maintain water in these areas and keep tissues well lubricated by evenly distributing moisture.
Of course, just like collagen, endogenously (internally) produced hyaluronic acid declines as we age, which is why there are so many hyaluronic acid products on the market right now. What most people don’t realize is that these are synthetic substances, usually made in the laboratory from bacteria or through extraction from rooster combs (the fleshy red skin on a rooster’s head).
Man-made “replicas” of substances that our bodies naturally produce often tend to come with some sort of negative side effect. Snow fungus mushroom, on the other hand, is a 100% natural substance that can do the same thing as synthetic hyaluronic acid.
Some experts state that the jelly-like silver ear mushroom may work even better than synthetically created hyaluronic acid, as dermatologist Dendy Engelman explained in a 2018 article for Allure Magazine about Tremella fuciformis . “The particles are smaller than hyaluronic acid so it penetrates the skin more easily,” says Dr. Engelman.
While hyaluronic acid can hold up to a thousand times its weight in water, the amazing white snow fungus may be able to hold just as much or more.
Inflammatory Properties of Silver Ear Mushroom
Many kinds of polysaccharides found in Tremella fuciformis also act as anti-inflammatories. A 2014 study found that the phenolic and flavonoid content of tremella mushroom made it a powerful antioxidant on a number of fronts .
This is beneficial for your skin because inflammation is at the heart of many serious inflammatory skin conditions such as eczema and psoriasis.
Immune-Boosting Polysaccharides in Tremella
There are also substances in white snow fungus that help to boost the immune system. An important one in this regard is beta-glucans.
Beta-glucans are a type of polysaccharide fiber found in the cell walls of grains and tubers as well as many kinds of fungi. They are immune stimulants which can increase natural killer (NK) cell production and macrophage counts. NK cells are a type of white blood cells that are super important for warding off pathogens – including cancer cells.
Beta-glucans are also great for your heart. As mentioned earlier, when you have a strong immune system, metabolism, and circulation system, this state will naturally rub off on your largest detoxifying organ (i.e., your skin) as well .
Research has also found that beta-glucans can help skin directly too. Tremella has long been known as a curative for scarring. Tremella fuciformis mushroom extract assists surface wounds in healing faster and can ease symptoms related to “erythema.”
Erythema is the painful reddening and irritation that often occurs right after a burn. The skin-healing benefits of tremella are due in large part to the presence of beta-glucans .
How to Take Advantage of Silver Ear Mushroom Skin Benefits
Whether you use tremella alone or in a formula, this “beauty mushroom” is definitely a natural substance that you should consider for your daily skincare routine.
In addition, if you’re looking for a clean, non-toxic and non-GMO skin formula that puts pure sourcing first and foremost, then we encourage you to check out AnnieMak’s Reverse Anti-Aging Serum.
Reverse not only contains organic Tremella fuciformis mushroom extract, but it also contains other powerful, skin-revitalizing substances such as argan sprout stem cell extract, raspberry seed extract, and more.
Remember that quality and purity really are key when it comes to anything that goes on your skin. You have done your best to eat naturally, go organic, and stay away from the toxins when it comes to the foods you prepare for yourself and your family. Why would you want anything less to go into what you “consume” through your skin?