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Cordyceps, a unique type of fungi revered in traditional medicine for centuries, has captured the interest of modern researchers and health enthusiasts alike. Cordyceps is known for its potential to support energy levels, athletic performance, and overall well-being. In this article, we explore the science behind cordyceps supplements, discussing their potential benefits and how they may contribute to your journey towards better health.

What Are Cordyceps?

Cordyceps is a type of fungus that originates from the mountainous regions of Asia, where it has been used in traditional medicine for its myriad health benefits. Unlike other fungi, cordyceps has a unique life cycle; it forms a parasitic relationship with caterpillar larvae and grows from the host’s body. Today, with advances to modern cultivation techniques, cordyceps can be grown without relying on this natural but intricate life cycle, making its supplements more accessible.

People often turn to cordyceps supplements for their high content of beneficial bioactive components. These include polysaccharides—vital long-chain carbohydrates that support immune function—and cordycepin, which is similar to adenosine and is researched for its ability to enhance energy metabolism and boost exercise performance.

Cordyceps isn’t just for athletes; its benefits extend to everyday energy and vitality. By improving oxygen use and boosting mitochondrial activity—the powerhouse of cells—cordyceps can help increase energy levels, making daily tasks feel less daunting. Additionally, its properties may strengthen the immune system, offering a shield against various infections and boosting overall health. Research also shows that cordyceps has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, helping to reduce oxidative stress and protect against chronic health issues.

What Are the Benefits of Cordyceps?

Is Cordyceps Safe?

Cordyceps supplements are safe for most people when taken in appropriate doses. Extensive research and traditional use over centuries have not revealed adverse effects associated with cordyceps.

Medication Interactions with Cordyceps

  • Immunosuppressants: Cordyceps may enhance the immune system, potentially reducing the efficacy of immunosuppressive medications used in autoimmune diseases or organ transplantation.
  • Anticoagulants/Antiplatelet Drugs: Cordyceps’ blood-thinning properties can increase bleeding risk when combined with these medications.
  • Diabetes Medications: Cordyceps may lower blood sugar levels, enhancing the effects of diabetes medications and potentially causing hypoglycemia.
  • Stimulant Medications: Cordyceps supplements’ stimulatory effects may amplify the effects of stimulant medications, increasing the risk of side effects like jitteriness or insomnia.
  • Antihypertensive Drugs: Cordyceps’ hypotensive effects can potentiate those of antihypertensive medications, leading to low blood pressure.
  • Cytochrome P450 Substrates: Cordyceps may affect the metabolism and blood levels of medications metabolized by these liver enzymes, such as statins or antidepressants.

Supplement Interactions with Cordyceps

  • Vitamin C: Combining cordyceps with high doses of vitamin C may enhance immune activity, possibly leading to an overactive immune response.
  • Vitamin D: Cordyceps supplements combined with vitamin D may further support immune function, potentially increasing the risk of immune system overstimulation or autoimmune reactions.
  • Zinc: Cordyceps used with zinc supplements may synergistically enhance immune function, potentially leading to an exaggerated immune response.
  • Omega-3 Fatty Acids (Fish Oil): Cordyceps combined with omega-3 fatty acids may have additive blood-thinning effects, increasing the risk of bleeding or bruising.
  • Garlic Extract: Cordyceps used with garlic extract may further enhance blood-thinning effects, increasing the risk of bleeding or bruising.
  • Ginkgo Biloba: Cordyceps combined with ginkgo biloba may amplify blood-thinning effects, increasing the risk of bleeding or bruising.
  • Alpha-Lipoic Acid: Cordyceps used alongside alpha-lipoic acid may further lower blood sugar levels, potentially leading to hypoglycemia (low blood sugar).
  • Chromium: Cordyceps combined with chromium may enhance blood sugar-lowering effects.
  • Cinnamon Extract: Cordyceps used with cinnamon extract may further lower blood sugar levels.
  • Caffeine: Cordyceps supplements combined with caffeine may have additive stimulatory effects, potentially increasing the risk of jitteriness, insomnia, or heart palpitations.

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Cordyceps 750mg by NOW Foods

  • Free Radical Scavenger*
  • Healthy Vascular Function*

Cordyceps sinensis is a fungus that has been used by traditional Chinese herbalists for its energizing and adaptogenic properties for centuries.* Cordyceps has numerous bioactive compounds, including polysaccharides and nucleosides, which have been studied for their broad range of biological activities.* Modern scientific studies have shown that Cordyceps constituents possess free radical scavenging properties and suggest that they may also support a healthy immune system and promote normal vascular function.*

Suggested Use: Take 2 capsules 2 to 3 times daily.

Amount Per 2 Veg Capsule Serving

Organic Cordyceps … 1.5 g (1,500 mg)*

(Cordyceps sinensis) (Mycelium)    

Cordyceps Mushroom Mycelium Powder by Host Defense

CORDYCEPS Mushroom Mycelium helps support stamina, oxygen uptake and a healthy metabolic rate.*
Adults take 1/2 tsp. 1-3 times per day, which can be mixed into your favorite food or beverage.

Amount Per Level 1/2 Tsp (1.5g) Serving
Cordyceps … 1.5g
(Cordyceps militaris) mycelium‡ polysaccharides 825mg

Food First!

Although this article discusses supplements in detail, don’t forget that we are absolutely committed to the “Food First” approach to nutrition. When it comes to your health, the totality of your eating habits far surpasses the impact of individual nutrients or any single supplement you consume. Even though this article doesn’t delve into the broader picture of your overall diet, it’s crucial to keep this element at the forefront of our minds. Your food needs to provide all the vitamins, minerals, fiber, and phytochemicals to nourish your body systems down to the cellular level.

Food choices, rather than supplements, are the most critical factors for a healthy gut microbiome. These trillions of tiny inhabitants in your gut affect your brain waves; they orchestrate your immune system. They possess the power to create molecules that can switch genes on or off and are even capable of synthesizing neurotransmitters. Opting for organic foods and steering clear of plastic packaging (including those labeled BPA-free) is a smart move to limit toxin exposure. The sum of all these parts leads to a powerful conclusion: the ultimate key to your health lies in the quality and balance of the food you consume. Supplements are secondary.

To Sum It Up

Cordyceps supplements offer a range of potential health benefits, including increased energy levels, support for immune function, improved exercise performance, and respiratory health. Additionally, Cordyceps may promote heart health, regulate blood sugar levels, support kidney health, and act as an adaptogen to help the body adapt to stress. With its long history of traditional use and growing scientific interest, cordyceps presents a natural and holistic approach to enhancing overall well-being. Incorporating cordyceps supplements into your wellness routine may contribute to a healthier and more vibrant lifestyle.

This Article is Not a Substitute for Medical Advice

Dietary supplements are not designed to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. The Supplement Sciences website seeks to provide comprehensive access to the most relevant supplement information along with convenient online ordering. We do not provide medical advice and cannot guarantee that every product suggested is completely without risk. Since each person is unique in their health history and medication use, it is important to discuss supplements with your personal physician. Specifically, pregnant women and individuals being treated for cancer or liver or kidney problems must consult their physician about every nutritional supplement they plan to take. People taking medications for the treatment of HIV or with a history of organ transplant must not take supplements without consulting with their physician.

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