Cordyceps Supports Adrenal Health*
Cordyceps is an interesting exotic fungus that grows on caterpillars living in the high mountain regions of China and Tibet. It is parasitic and eventually consumes most of the caterpillar. It has a long history of use in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), as well as Tibetan medicine. The name cordyceps comes from Latin words meaning club and head.
Cordyceps is an adaptogen that supports both immune and endocrine health.* Cordyceps’ diverse actions appear to support communication between the adrenals and the immune system, and you will find cordyceps incorporated into both adrenal and immune formulas.*
Scientific research has uncovered that there are many active compounds found in cordyceps including polysaccharides, cordycepin, cordycepic acid, nucleosides, ergosterol, and adenosine.
Much research has looked at the immune-supporting effects of cordyceps. In fact, a 2019 randomized, double-blind trial published in BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine showed that after eight weeks, cordyceps supported natural killer cell activity significantly more than placebo.*
Additional research has shown that cordyceps helps support physical stamina, energy levels and adrenal function, especially during times of stress.* Several animal studies, as well as human trials involving exercising adults, have shown that cordyceps is a supportive energy supplement.* Components of cordyceps, such as adenosine in particular, may be partly responsible for supporting energy transfer and cellular signaling.*
A 2017 review published in the journal Experimental & Molecular Medicine that focused on muscle fatigue, listed cordyceps as a natural substance to support muscle energy. Specifically regarding muscle function, cordyceps has been shown to support glycogen stores and blood lactic acid.* Because cordyceps is a potent antioxidant, this too is another way it supports immune function, adrenal function and energy levels.*
Cordyceps is available as a dietary supplement and is often combined with other adaptogenic botanicals and nutrients that support energy and adrenal function.* The amount typically recommended is 1,000 to 3,000 mg per day.* The long history of use of cordyceps in TCM indicates that it also has a strong safety record.
Geng P, Siu K, Wang Z, Wu J. BioMed Research International. 2017;2017.
Jung S. Jung E, Choi E, et al. BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine. 2019;19:77.
Panda AK, Swain KC. Journal of Ayurveda and Integrative Medicine. 2011;2(1):9-13.
Wan J, Qin Z, Wang P, et al. Experimental & Molecular Medicine. 2017;49.
Xu YF. International Journal of Medicinal Mushrooms. 2016;18(12):1083-1092.