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Cordyceps

Also indexed as:Caterpillar fungus, Chongcao , Cordyceps spp., Deer Fungus Parasite
Cordyceps: Main Image© Martin Wall
Common names:
Caterpillar fungus, Chongcao , Deer Fungus Parasite
Botanical names:
Cordyceps spp.

Parts Used & Where Grown

Cordyceps sinensis in its sexual stage is the primary form used.1 However, more than ten related species (in sexual and asexual stages) as well as artificially cultured mycelium are today used as substitutes in commercial preparations. C. sinensis, C. ophioglossoides, C. capita, and C. militaris are the most common species in commerce.

  • Reliable and relatively consistent scientific data showing a substantial health benefit.
  • Contradictory, insufficient, or preliminary studies suggesting a health benefit or minimal health benefit.
  • For an herb, supported by traditional use but minimal or no scientific evidence. For a supplement, little scientific support.

Our proprietary “Star-Rating” system was developed to help you easily understand the amount of scientific support behind each supplement in relation to a specific health condition. While there is no way to predict whether a vitamin, mineral, or herb will successfully treat or prevent associated health conditions, our unique ratings tell you how well these supplements are understood by the medical community, and whether studies have found them to be effective for other people.

For over a decade, our team has combed through thousands of research articles published in reputable journals. To help you make educated decisions, and to better understand controversial or confusing supplements, our medical experts have digested the science into these three easy-to-follow ratings. We hope this provides you with a helpful resource to make informed decisions towards your health and well-being.

This supplement has been used in connection with the following health conditions:

Used for AmountWhy
Hepatitis
3 to 4.5 grams twice per day2 stars[2 stars]
Cordyceps has repeatedly been shown effective in trials at improving liver and immune function in people with chronic hepatitis B, including those with cirrhosis.
Immune Function
Refer to label instructions 1 star[1 star]
Cordyceps has immune-strengthening actions and may be helpful in a wide range of conditions in which the immune system is weakened.

Traditional Use (May Not Be Supported by Scientific Studies)

In ancient China, cordyceps was used in the Emperor’s palace and was considered to have ginseng-like properties.2 It was used to strengthen the body after exhaustion or long-term illness, and for impotence, neurasthenia, and backache. It was also used to cure opium addiction.

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The information presented in Aisle7 is for informational purposes only. It is based on scientific studies (human, animal, or in vitro), clinical experience, or traditional usage as cited in each article. The results reported may not necessarily occur in all individuals. Self-treatment is not recommended for life-threatening conditions that require medical treatment under a doctor's care. For many of the conditions discussed, treatment with prescription or over the counter medication is also available. Consult your doctor, practitioner, and/or pharmacist for any health problem and before using any supplements or before making any changes in prescribed medications. Information expires June 2015.

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