Cordyceps Militaris Mushroom: The Puppet Master

The entire fungal kingdom can seem strange, largely due to how little we know about it. Within the kingdom, the reward for strangest of all would definitely have to go to the cordyceps genus. Like something out of science fiction, these otherworldly earthlings feed off of insects — and, essentially, posses and control them like marionette puppets.

The fungus travels to inner workings of the insect’s nervous system to use its body as a vehicle before finally consuming all of its insides. When infected, the bug can suddenly be observed venturing to areas it would never consider in a normal state. For insects infected above ground, it is common to find them up high, on the underside of a leaf, with a mushroom growing from the head or back. This is advantageous positioning for the cordyceps, because it allows the mushroom to rain down its spores onto the terrain and colonize more susceptible insects. Curiously, each species of cordyceps seems to specialize in infecting a single insect species.

Cordyceps Militaris Mushroom: Bad for Insects, Good for Us!

Despite its fatal effect on insects, cordyceps offer many health benefits to humans. A fact widely acknowledged in the east, where cordyceps is referred to as “the olympic mushroom.” The mushroom was so valuable to people that, at one point, cordyceps sinensis was selling for its weight in gold.

Cordyceps militaris mushroom is used for energy, athletic performance, sexual performance, fertility, lung capacity, and more. Its most prized compound, the energy-inducing cordycepin, is molecularly similar to adenosine, which our bodies have to make. Since our bodies can’t tell the difference between cordycepin and adenosine, it’s essentially free energy. Only recently have cordyceps been utilized in the west, where they are becoming a quick growing trend.

No Animals are Harmed in the Cultivation of Our Mushrooms

At Mushroom Revival, our farm focuses on cultivating cordyceps militaris mushroom. We love this species for its relatively easy cultivation, its unique shape & color, and its impressive health benefits. While cordyceps fungi are carnivorous, we are able to cultivate them on a vegan substrate. No bugs are used in our facility, and we use all organic ingredients. For accessible, high quality cordyceps, check out our home grown and home processed tinctures and dried mushrooms.

Cordyceps is Latin for “club head,” and they do indeed embody a club shape. Cordyceps militaris mushrooms grows into these bright orange, slender figures that eventually look fuzzy after growing perithecium (the fruiting body that releases spores). Here at the Mushroom Revival farm, we call cordyceps “alien cheetos,” and the spores, “cheeto dust.” You will notice our cordyceps tincture has a somewhat neon glow to it, similar to what you get when cooking with turmeric. We love this vibrant quality, and think it’s appropriate for the vibrancy it can bring to your life!

I owe it to my frequent intake of cordyceps tincture and cordyceps tea to keep up with my busy schedule and laborious lifestyle. I even gifted a tincture to my father who regularly competes in the Iron Man triathlon. He described his first dose of cordyceps like a cup of coffee for your muscles, without the jitters or the crash. He also reported sustained energy and less fatigue from his daily training. One of nature’s weirdest organisms proves to be a helpful, life-giving substance, and is finally accessible to the general public of the west. Take advantage!

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