Cordyceps is a fungus used in Chinese herbal medicine for over a thousand of years. It grows in the wild, in the high mountain tops of China, particularly in Tibet and in Sichuan, Qinghai and Yunnan.
Originally the Chinese used the wild Cordyceps, but its rarity has made it an extremely expensive medicine. The Chinese have developed a method of culture on a substrate made from rice or soybeans. There are more than ten strains of cultivated Cordyceps. The most commonly used by Chinese herbalists is Paecilomyces hepiali (Cs-4). The research done on this strain seem to demonstrate the same efficiency as the wild mushroom.
Cordyceps started getting attention in the West in the early 1990, when the success of Chinese athletes were attributed to consumption of this fungus.
The therapeutic effects of Cordyceps similar to the ones of Ginseng or Reishi. It is primarily a plant known for its adaptogenic effects, useful to combat the negative effects of stress. It is also known for stimulating general physical and intellectual functions.
Cordyceps is useful in cases of:
- General fatigue, nervous exhaustion
- Erectile Dysfunction
- Heart Problems
- High cholesterol
- Renal Weakness and liver problems
- Weak lungs and bronchi
- Weak immune system
- Increase athletic performance
Studies carried out in China, have demonstrated the efficiency of Cordyceps in numbers of health problems and disorders. Other studies suggest that Cordyceps is also effective in some respiratory problems affecting the bronchial tubes or lungs.
Cordyceps supplements are commercially available in different forms. This fungus is extremely powerful when combined with a sister plant like Ginseng. A good way would be to use liquid extract form in capsules, offering a mixture of different plants with adaptogenic effects and stimulants, such as Cordyceps, Ginseng and Maca. One can also obtain the Cordyceps powder dry.