Cordyceps is a type of medicinal mushroom said to offer antioxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits . Long used in traditional Chinese medicine, cordyceps is available in the United States as a dietary supplement. There are 400 species of cordyceps, most of which are native to Bhutan, China, Korea, Nepal, Thailand, and Vietnam.
Cordyceps mushrooms are a distinct fungi that have been naturally crossed with a larva or a caterpillar. They have been used as an adaptogenic, medicinal mushroom for centuries. While there are two types of Cordyceps – that’s Cordyceps Sinensis and Ophiocordyceps sinensis – both have been shown to have the same benefits!
Yes, that’s right. Cordyceps is a fungus that grows out of the larval body of an insect at altitudes about 3800m to create a powerfully healing medicinal mushroom (though not technically a mushroom, most practitioners classify it under that heading). Mother Nature is truly incredible!
Therefore cordyceps can be quite helpful for individuals with diabetes. Your immune system is what helps you fight disease – its function is to defend the body from infection and external invasion. A strong immune system is extremely crucial to your health, and that’s where cordyceps mushrooms come in handy .
Another popular query is “Can supplements of Cordyceps mushrooms improve exercise performance?”.
The best answer is supplements of Cordyceps mushrooms showed improved exercise performance in healthy older patients, as demonstrated by improved respiratory and metabolic functioning (44). This study took 20 healthy elderly individuals ages 50-75. One group was the control, and the other group took 999 mg of Cs-4 (three 333-mg capsules) per day.
Is Cordyceps good for You?
Now that we’ve dispelled a lot of the misinformation around Cordyceps, let’s look at some of the benefits of using Cordyceps. In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), Cordyceps mushrooms are considered a very special tonic. Called Dōnɡ Chónɡ Xià Cǎo (冬虫夏草), these mushrooms were offered to the Emperor’s court and others among Chinese nobility.
A couple of studies have shown favorable results with cordyceps not only in the prevention of liver cirrhosis (18) but also within the potential reversal and amelioration of the disease !
Supplementing with cordyceps appears to improve energy output in sedentary and/or elderly people but not in high-performing endurance athletes, which could mean the mushroom has more potential for people who haven’t yet achieved peak performance*. [ 25, 26] Why does cordyceps provide an exercise boost?
What is a Cordyceps?
Cordyceps is a fungus that grows out of the larval body of an insect at altitudes about 3800m to create a powerfully healing medicinal mushroom (though not technically a mushroom, most practitioners classify it under that heading). Mother Nature is truly incredible!
One frequent answer is, there is currently one type of Cordyceps species that can be commercially cultivated at scale to produce a mushroom (fruiting body), and it is becoming quite popular. This is Cordyceps militaris . By using Cordyceps militaris, for the first time, true Cordyceps mushroom extracts can be made.
How does Cordyceps protect mitochondria?
Studies show cordyceps works even deeper : it could protect mitochondria, basically mini organs or “organelles” that dwell in each cell in the body. These are important for resisting free radical damage, optimizing energy, and cleaning up dead cells.
The answer is that according to a 2008 study published in the Journal of Microbiology and Biotechnology, a cordyceps extract was able to trigger apoptosis (cell death) in breast cancer cells in test tube studies. Similar results have been seen with colon cancer cells. The cordycepins in the cordyceps mushroom also appear to be toxic to leukemia cells.