Stress can take its toll on your energy and performance levels, making it challenging to meet your health and fitness goals. Thankfully, some natural stress relief options can help improve your well-being while also giving you the energy needed to make time in your busy schedule.
Cordyceps have been used in traditional Chinese medicine for centuries to reduce stress and increase energy levels, but how can you make them work for you?
A Brief History & Overview
Cordyceps is a fungus that grows on the back of certain insects. To date, more than 350 species of the Cordyceps have been identified in over sixty different countries around the world. According to the 1964 Chinese Pharmacopeia, Cordyceps Sinensis is registered as the only herbal drug.
Today, C. Sinensis remains one of Traditional Chinese Medicine's most famous medicinal mushrooms.
Under the theory of Chinese medicine, C. Sinensis is believed to have a sweet taste and neutral properties. People can use it to nourish the kidneys, soothe the lungs, stop bleeding, and eliminate excessive phlegm in the body. Cordyceps Sinensis has been used to treat fatigue, cough, low sex drive, renal dysfunction, and even renal failure for many years.
5 Cordyceps Benefits
While you may not have heard of Cordyceps, it has been an herbal and medicinal tool that has been in use for centuries. Westerners are just now catching on to what Eastern cultures already know—Cordyceps is a powerful adaptogen with various physical and mental health benefits. Here are a just a few of the benefits that Cordyceps may offer:
#1. Stress Management
According to research, oral administration of antioxidants and adaptogens like Cordyceps can reduce stress. Adaptogens support the body and help it to adapt to both mental and physical stress. It stimulates the adrenal glands and helps to regulate the nervous system, also known as the body’s “fight-or-flight” response.
Because the nervous system gets overstimulated when a person is exposed to chronic stress, adaptogens (like Cordyceps) can bring balance back to it.
#2 Minimize Inflammation
While some inflammation in the body is perfectly okay, too much can lead to diseases like heart disease and cancer. Combating inflammation is where Cordyceps shines. Researchers found Cordyceps to reduce the protein level associated with increased inflammation in the body.
One study even found that taking Cordyceps effectively reduced symptoms of oxidative stress and inflammatory cytokines and improved participants' physical function.
Additionally, there is promising evidence that it has potential for topical use. In a study on mice, researchers found Cordyceps reduced skin inflammation.
#3 Enhance Physical Performance
Cordyceps are known for their ability to manage and optimize energy levels. As a general tonic, Cordyceps can be used as an adaptogen to improve physical performance. Athletes commonly use Cordyceps during training cycles to help them withstand fatigue during vigorous exercise.
The evidence suggests that Cordyceps also may boost male virility and endurance.
Cordyceps can increase the body's production of adenosine triphosphate (ATP). This vital molecule delivers energy to muscles. Researchers believe this unique function may enhance oxygen flow through your body, particularly during exercise.
So if you’re looking for a natural supplement to help boost your fitness regimen, Cordyceps may be the ingredient for you.
#4 Reduce Fatigue
Cordyceps mushrooms contain adenosine, a chemical that can increase energy levels and manage stress in your body. Cordyceps also acts as a powerful stress management agent, helping to keep cortisol levels in check so you can enjoy your days without the negative side effects of stress – like low energy, poor digestion, feeling overwhelmed, and getting poor sleep.
Research also suggests that the energy-boosting impact of Cordyceps could play an anti-aging role due to their antioxidant properties. Older adults have been using Cordyceps to reduce fatigue and improve strength and sex drive.
#5 Support Heart Health
Cordyceps has been shown to help increase nitric oxide levels, thus promoting better blood flow and oxygen delivery. If you have high blood pressure or are at risk for heart disease, try supplementing with Cordyceps to support your heart health. What's more, Cordyceps is a natural stress-reliever that can help you stay calm when things get hectic.
One study found Cordyceps significantly reduced heart injury rate among rats with chronic kidney disease. Injuries caused by chronic kidney disease can increase the risk of heart failure. Therefore, reducing these injuries is critical.
Additionally, Cordyceps is an approved Chinese remedy for arrhythmia, a condition characterized by a too-slow heartbeat, a too-fast heartbeat, or irregular heartbeat. Research shows Cordyceps may also have a positive effect on cholesterol.
When & How to Take Cordyceps
The Cordyceps extract comes in either capsule or powder form. You can take the capsules with water and dissolve the powdered extract into liquid and drink it. No matter the format you consume it in, you can take up to 3,000 mg daily. We recommend taking Cordyceps in the morning or before exercising if you need a helpful energy boost.
Where to Buy Cordyceps
Due to the difficulty of harvesting Cordyceps Sinensis and the high price tag of more than $9,000 per pound, most Cordyceps supplements contain a synthetically grown variety called Cordyceps CS-4. To be sure you are buying quality Cordyceps supplements, look for brands carrying the United States Pharmacopeia (USP) or NSF International (NSF) seal. These companies ensure that what you are getting in the supplement is what the bottle advertises.
At Revvl, we have a product called Revvl Restore that contains high-quality cordyceps in its formula. Give it a try and experience the compounding benefits of high-performing adaptogens working together. Discover the power of adaptogen blends today.
Resources and Extra Reading:
 Cordyceps as an Herbal Drug - Herbal Medicine - NCBI Bookshelf.
 Studies on the Antifatigue Activities of Cordyceps militaris Fruit Body Extract in Mouse Model - PMC
 Cordyceps sinensis as an immunomodulatory agent
 A Randomized, Double-Blind and Placebo-Controlled Study of a Ganoderma lucidum Polysaccharide Extract in Neurasthenia | Request PDF
 Cordyceps militaris improves tolerance to high intensity exercise after acute and chronic supplementation
 Effect of Polysaccharide from Cordyceps militaris (Ascomycetes) on Physical Fatigue Induced by Forced Swimming
 Cordyceps sinensis: Genotoxic Potential in Human Peripheral Blood Cells and Antigenotoxic Properties Against Hydrogen Peroxide by Comet Assay
 Cordyceps sinensis Increases Hypoxia Tolerance by Inducing Heme Oxygenase-1 and Metallothionein via Nrf2 Activation in Human Lung Epithelial Cells - PMC
 Cordyceps sinensis protects against liver and heart injuries in a rat model of chronic kidney disease: a metabolomic analysis - PMC
 Cordyceps as an Herbal Drug - Herbal Medicine - NCBI Bookshelf
 Lipid-lowering effect of cordycepin (3'-deoxyadenosine) from Cordyceps militaris on hyperlipidemic hamsters and rats