Cordyceps Side Effects, Supplement Facts, Dosage, Reviews

Cordyceps does not stop fascinating. It naturally grows in the mountainous regions of Asia by invading insect creatures and growing from their physique. Individuals are using it for centuries to boost energy and libido. Discover how cordyceps supplements have been produced and utilized and what side effects they can create.

What Is Cordyceps?

Cordyceps is your name for a group (genus) of fungi, all of which are parasites of different insects or other fungi. There are more than 750 species of Cordyceps fungi around the world. They mostly rise in South Asia, Europe, and North America.

With so many mushroom species, it becomes hard to state exactly which one someone is speaking to when they speak about “cordyceps.”

Cordyceps Mushroom: 5 Health Benefits of the Adaptogen

The very well-known and researched one is Cordyceps Sinensis. In 2007, scientists discovered that this species is unrelated to the majority of the others and placed it in an entirely new genus (Ophiocordyceps). Although its name was altered to Ophiocordyceps Sinensis, it is still commonly referred to as C. Sinensis or just cordyceps.

Cordyceps is no typical mushroom. The way it develops in character has fascinated scientists for quite a long time and got it the nickname “caterpillar fungus.”

Significantly, the spores of this fungus infect moth caterpillars. These tiny spores then grow into a sizable fungal mass known as mycelium that spreads through the insect body, eventually killing the larvae. A thin stalk called a fruiting body afterward sprouts from the corpse, releases spores, also continues the cycle.

In fact, the fungus-caterpillar combination is among the most famous traditional Chinese medicines. It’s been used for centuries in tinctures and teas to improve libido, reduce tiredness, and combat kidney and lung ailments.

More widely, cordyceps is known as a general tonic maintained to increase vitality and longevity. Standardized extracts are used in medical clinics around China and some are classified as drugs.

Unlike some other shrub, cordyceps develops in nature by invading and killing moth caterpillars. It is traditionally claimed to be a tonic and aphrodisiac.

Cordyceps Sinensis vs. Cordyceps Militaris

While C. Sinensis is by far the most appreciated and studied Cordyceps species, many others have also been used due to their potential health benefits. Among these, Cordyceps militaris has become the most well-known and researched one.

Regardless of their longstanding popularity and usage, few clinical trials have been run on each C. Sinensis or C. militaris, and no human studies have investigated another species.

C. Sinensis is found exclusively in the Tibetan plateau, The world’s greatest plateau that covers nearly all of Tibet and some of the neighboring regions. Its average altitude is astonishing, attaining 4,500 m or 14,800 ft. Cordyceps is an increasingly important part of traditional Tibetan medicine and the Tibetan economy. Harvesting of crazy C. Sinensis accounts for almost 40% of the earnings in rural Tibet and 9% of the region’s GDP.

C. Sinensis captured The interest of the world in 1993 when Chinese long-distance runners broke several world records in the Chinese National Games. Their coach credited their success to a daily tonic comprising the bacterium.

The most famous and researched cordyceps species is C. Sinensis, followed by C. militaris.

Active Components

The two most important active components found in both C. Sinensis and C. militaris (along with a few other Cordyceps species) are cordycepin (3′-deoxyadenosine) and D-mannitol (also known as cordycepic acid).

Cordycepin is quite much like this molecule adenosine, which plays a role in helping drop asleep and increasing blood flow. Adenosine is also part of ATP, the body’s most important energy money.

D-mannitol Is sugar alcohol used clinically as a diuretic in people with fluid buildup (edema) due to kidney disorders and to decrease swelling in the brain after trauma or stroke.

Other active components found in C. Sinensis and C. militaris include:

  • Polysaccharides (CPS-1, CPS-2, CS-F30, CS-F10, beta-glucans, and mannoglucan)
  • Nucleosides (adenosine and thymidine)
  • Sterols (ergosterol and beta-sitosterol)
  • Vitamins: B1, B2, along with K
  • Minerals, such as potassium, calcium, magnesium, iron, zinc, and selenium
  • Others: peptides, amino acids, sugars, fatty acids, and enzymes

Cordyceps includes many active substances, the most important ones being cordycepin (that acts on energy levels) and polysaccharides (which encourage the immune system).

How Can Cordyceps Work?

Cordycepin has numerous possible consequences, including:

  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Antioxidant
  • Antimicrobial
  • Anticancer
  • Anti-diabetic
  • Immune system-balancing

D-mannitol acts as a diuretic, which helps maintain the balance between fluids inside and outside cells, also reduce inflammation.

Carbohydrates in Cordyceps might have anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and cholesterol– and bloodstream sugar-lowering consequences. They might also help boost the immune system.

Cordyceps Supplement Truth, Combinations & Dosage

Are Cordyceps Supplements Produced?

Because it’s adapted to a particular host, geography, and climate, wild C. Sinensis is scarce and hopeless to mass-produce using its normal life cycle. This, coupled with high demand, has resulted in skyrocketing costs. In 2017, high-quality C. Sinensis pieces were being marketed for over $63,000/lb ($140,000/kg) in Beijing, over 3x the price of gold at the moment!

Due to overharvesting, rampant C. Sinensis is currently classified as an endangered species. To fulfill the requirement that can’t be satisfied by picking the wild form, artificial cultivation methods are developed. Thanks to such methods, large scale production of the C. Sinensis and C. militaris is now possible.

There are two main ways to mass-produce Cordyceps.

One Involves the hardening of the fungus in a liquid medium comprising sugar, yeast, along with other nutrients, set at a particular temperature and pH. Once the mycelium (non-reproductive part of the fungus) has fully grown, it is extracted and processed. This procedure permits you to develop Cordyceps fast and can be popular with Chinese producers.

Different strains of wild C. Sinensis Are added in the fermentation process to various products. For example, Cs-4 is a standardized item in the specific breed of C. Sinensis.

Another way of creating Cordyceps entails Increasing the mycelium on a good medium of grain (rice, millet, wheat). This technique takes longer and is used by a number of producers in Japan and the United States.

Although it is cheaper to make Cordyceps that Way, you will find problems with all the end-product containing high levels of grain relative to active elements. This is because unlike liquid mediums, the grain can not be separated completely by the mycelium.

Cultured Cordyceps mycelium includes the same concentrations of active elements as wild Cordyceps, making it an effective and economical alternative.

Wild cordyceps has become an endangered species. Instead, cordyceps mycelium is currently mass-produced on various cultured mediums at the lab.

Possible Supplement Combinations


In a study of 18 athletes experiencing elevation training, people carrying cordyceps and Rhodiola crenulata saw Double the improvement in run time until fatigue in contrast to placebo. They were also able to manage pressure better by enhancing their heartbeat variability.

However, another study revealed that the combination of cordyceps and Rhodiola Rosea did not improve exercise performance in contrast to placebo.

In summary, Rhodiola crenulata may synergize better using cordyceps compared to Rhodiola Rosea in improving aerobic capacity and exercise functionality.

Ginkgo Biloba

The mix of cordyceps and Ginkgo biloba reduced the inflammatory markers hs-CRP, IL-6, and TNF-α in 60 kidney failure patients.

And Similar to cordyceps, ginkgo also enhances blood flow. Plus, a lot of ginkgo’s health benefits overlap with those of cordyceps while both remedies are classified as tonics.


Lupus nephritis is an inflammation of the kidneys in people with lupus. A 5-year study looked at the impact of cordyceps and artemisinin — a molecule extracted from wormwood — in patients with lupus who were treated with this illness and no more had the disease. The combination improved kidney function and prevented Lupus nephritis from arriving in 30 out of 31 patients.

A combination of cordyceps and Rhodiola was researched for improving exercise performance, cordyceps and ginkgo for lowering inflammation, and cordyceps and artemisinin for Lupus nephritis.

Supplement Forms

Bailing capsule is a supplement used in China produced from mycelium of C. Sinensis. Corbrin capsule (CS-C-Q80) is also made from C. Sinensis mycelium and can be categorized as a drug in China.

Cs-4, called Jin Shui Bao in China, is a specific strain of C. Sinensis that’s grown through the liquid fermentation method. It is standardized to contain no less than 5% D-mannitol and 0.14percent adenosine.

As wild C. Sinensis is prohibitively costly, you should be very careful of any very affordable product that’s advertised as such.


Since Cordyceps is not accepted by the FDA for any condition, there’s no official dose. Users and supplement manufacturers have established unofficial dosages according to trial and error. Discuss with your health care provider if cordyceps might be useful as a complementary approach to your case and which dose you should take.

For the Cs-4 cordyceps breed, 1-3 g/day has been used in clinical studies.

For the average cultured Cordyceps Sinensis (the Bailing capsule), the research used 3 g/day divided into three doses.

For the fermented powders of Cordyceps Sinensis (Corbrin capsule), 2 g/day was used to enhance autoimmune thyroid disease.

To sum it upward, clinical trials suggest 1-3 grams /day as the dosage for most cordyceps extracts. Most supplements contain 600–1,000 mg of the extract per pill.

Cordyceps Side Effects, Precautions, Drug Interactions & Reviews

Safety & Side Effects

Maintain In mind that the security profile of cordyceps is relatively unknown, given that the lack of clinical studies. The list of negative effects isn’t a certain one, and you need to consult your physician about other potential side effects according to your health condition and possible drug or supplement interactions.

Side effects were infrequent in clinical trials, but may comprise:

  • Dry mouth
  • Nausea
  • Diarrhea

While it’s deadly for insects, cordyceps taken as a nutritional supplement won’t infect your cells.

A case report discovered that a patient carrying C. Sinensis per day Experienced excessive bleeding following dental surgery. People with bleeding disorders should use caution when supplementing cordyceps.

There also have been a few reports of lead poisoning from C. Sinensis. Be sure that you are buying from respectable vendors who routinely test for levels of contaminants in their products.

Guys Having an enlarged prostate or prostate cancer might want to avoid cordyceps because of its ability to increase the growth of the gland in addition to prostate cancer in mice.

Pregnant and lactating women should avoid carrying cordyceps due to its capacity to boost sex hormone levels.

Reported side effects of cordyceps include nausea, dry mouth, diarrhea, and increased bleeding. Low-quality products could be contaminated with lead or other toxins. Caution is recommended.

Drug Interactions

Supplement/Herb/Nutrient-drug Interactions could be dangerous and, in rare cases, even life-threatening. Always consult your doctor before supplementing and let them know about all drugs and nutritional supplements you’re using or considering.

Blood Sugar-Lowering Medicines

Cordyceps Reduced blood sugar levels in mice and rats. Its mix with blood-sugar-lowering drugs can further lower blood glucose.

Antiviral Drugs

Due To the antiviral properties of cordycepin, patients carrying antiviral drugs must use caution before taking cordyceps as it might interfere with the drugs’ effects.

Consult your physician before supplementing if you take drugs or have a serious medical condition.

Cordyceps can interact with medications. Consult your healthcare provider before supplementing.


The Opinions expressed in this section are only those of cordyceps users, who might or might not have scientific or medical training. Their reviews do not represent the opinions of us. We don’t endorse any particular solution, service, or therapy.

Don’t Consider user adventures as medical advice. Never delay or disregard seeking professional medical advice from your doctor or other qualified healthcare providers because of something you have read on this website. We understand that studying person, real-life experiences can be a very helpful resource, but it is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or therapy from a qualified healthcare provider.

The most frequent benefits of using cordyceps reported by consumers were increased physical and mental energy and improved mood. Many mentioned increased aerobic capacity and found it less difficult to breathe during cardio workouts.

Some users reported enhanced sleep, libido, and immune system function. Others reported no side effects.

Negative Effects were rarely reported and stopped with discontinued use. These comprised upset stomach increased anger, aggression, irritability, and stress.

Effects generally appear to last with continuing tolerance and use does seem to be a problem based on user reviews.


Cordyceps Is a parasitic bacterium that’s highly valued in traditional Chinese medicine for its alleged energy-, fertility-, and libido-boosting effects.

The fungus is only found on the Tibetan plateau and Studies have discovered many active components including cordycepin, cordycepic acid, and polysaccharides.

Because wild cordyceps is Scarce and hard to create on a large enough scale to satisfy demand, artificial farming methods using liquid fermentation or strong grain mediums are used.

Reported side effects include nausea, dry mouth, And diarrhea. Low-quality products may be contaminated with direct or Other toxins.