Cordyceps mushroom supplements are commonly taken by athletes looking to get an edge, and are said to help by increasing endurance, energy and overall stamina.
This first came into the public eye in the late 1993, when the Chinese women’s Olympic track team managed to break 3 world records at a single event. Rumors of drug use were rampant, until finally, the teams coach pointed to their secret weapon- Cordyceps mushrooms.
According to the coach, regularly ingesting the mushrooms boosted the runners energy, and relaxed the respitory tract, allowing the runners to use oxygen more efficiently and gain a competitive edge.
Scientific studies have been done more recently which show that Cordyceps can actually increase “vasodilation” helping to deliver much needed oxygen to the cells of the body during exercise, increasing stamina. This study, example, showed that athletic performance was increased for older healthy adults by taking Cordyceps over a 12 week period.
Another study set out to show the effect of Cordyceps on physical endurance by giving supplemental dose to rats over a period of 15 days and monitoring their ability to swim. The study showed that the group using cordyceps was able to increase their swim times by upwards of 20 minutes- a substantial improvement.
Cordyceps has also shown to help people with chronic fatigue syndrome and depression. This could very well be linked to increased delivery of oxygen, the same reason why cordyceps helps increase stamina and endurance.