Cordyceps mushrooms have a long history in traditional Chinese medicine for their diverse health benefits. Recent studies seem to suggest thatcordyceps may have a significant role in fighting prostate cancer.
Cordyceps mushrooms pack serious anticancer potential: they have shown promising results in inhibiting the growth of cancer cells, inducing apoptosis (cell death), and inhibiting angiogenesis (the formation of new blood vessels that supply tumors). A 2015 study showed that “some of the C. militaris’ isolated compounds, namely cordycepin… have shown activity as apoptosis inducers in several human tumor cells.”
We can’t say we’re surprised at the antitumor activities ofthis adaptogenic mushroom. Let’s dig deeper into the mechanisms behind the effects of Cordyceps militaris on prostate health.
Are you new to the magical world of cordyceps? Order our cordyceps matcha tea and invigorate your day.
What Is Prostate Cancer?
Prostate cancer occurs in the prostate gland, a small, walnut-shaped organ. The prostate gland produces seminal fluid that nourishes and transports sperm. Cancer develops when abnormal cells in the prostate gland start to grow and divide uncontrollably, forming a tumor. Once established in the prostate, the cancer can spread to other organs.
Prostate cancer is grouped into four stages.
- Early stage (stages I and II): the tumor is in the prostate.
- Locally advanced (stage III): cancer has spread outside the prostate to nearby tissues.
- Advanced (stage IV): cancer has spread outside the prostate to other parts (the lymph nodes, bones, liver, or lungs).
Prostate cancer is one of the most common types of cancer in American men. An early prostate cancer diagnosis gives patients the best hope for successful treatment and remission; advanced prostate cancer is much harder to treat successfully. According to the American Cancer Society, the survival rates for prostate cancer patients are high with an early diagnosis.
Symptoms of Prostate Cancer
In its early stages, the disease may show no symptoms. More advanced prostate cancer can show signs such as:
- Blood in the urine
- Blood in the semen
- Difficulty and pain while urinating
- Pain or discomfort in the pelvic area or lower back
- Weight loss
- Reduced sexual function
- Erectile dysfunction
Prostate cancer. Source:
Causes of Prostate Cancer
The exact cause of prostate cancer is unknown. Researchers have identified several risk factors that can increase the chances of developing it.
- Age (men over the age of 60 are more likely to be diagnosed).
- Family history (having relatives with prostate cancer increases the risk).
- Genetics (certain inherited gene mutations can increase the risk).
- A diet high in red meat and high-fat dairy products.
- Obesity and lack of physical activity.
While these may not cause prostate cancer outright, each one correlates with developing the disease. The more of these factors apply, the more vigilant you should be about getting checkups.
How Is Prostate Cancer Treated?
Prostate cancer treatments focus on curing or controlling the disease so it affects everyday life as little as possible. Treatments usually combine surgery, radiation therapy, hormone therapy (androgen-deprivation therapy), chemotherapy, and immunotherapy. For slow-growing tumors or older patients with early stage cancer, doctors typically recommend close monitoring without immediate treatment.
While cancer treatment options aim to combat the disease and improve patient outcomes, many patients experience unpleasant side effects. It’s worth exploring alternative approaches to managing these side effects, such as incorporating natural, organic supplements.
Cordyceps is a powerful natural supplement with the potential to alleviate the adverse effects of chemotherapy and other cancer treatments. Chemotherapy often comes with a plethora of unwanted side effects—nausea, vomiting, fatigue, loss of appetite, and compromised immune function. Studies show that cordyceps mushrooms can provide relief in these areas.
Before we reveal the amazing anticancer properties of Cordyceps militaris in treating prostate cancer, dig into the 17 surprising cordyceps health benefits.
Our cordyceps tea contains another powerhouse adaptogen and an equally potent anticancer fighter: matcha. Matcha is a type of powdered green tea known for its rich concentration of antioxidants and bioactive compounds. We combined them so their individual benefits could synergize and provide a more comprehensive approach to wellness.
Don’t believe us? Order our mushroom matcha box and see for yourself. One packet of our tea a day will keep the maladies away.
Anticancer Properties of Cordyceps Militaris
Research reveals thatthe bioactive compounds in cordyceps mushrooms have extraordinary antitumor potential. These mushrooms contain cordycepin, adenosine, and polysaccharides that have demonstrated mechanisms of action against tumors.
- Cordyceps enhances the immunological response to cancer by propelling our own immune system to fight cancer cells more effectively. A 2022 study review explained that, by boosting the body’s immune system, “Cordyceps can inhibit the growth and metastasis of tumor cells by death (including apoptosis and autophagy) induction, cell-cycle arrest, and angiogenesis inhibition.”
- Cordyceps have an inhibitory effect on cancer cell proliferation.Cordyceps extracts have been found to inhibit the proliferation of different cancer cell lines, including lung cancer, colon cancer, breast cancer, and prostate cancer cells.
- Cordyceps mushrooms may be able to suppress tumor angiogenesis. Angiogenesis is the process by which new blood vessels form, and tumors need blood and oxygen to grow and spread. The 2022 review also revealed that “the vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) family plays an important role in angiogenesis. VEGF, a key angiogenic growth factor, has a higher expression level in tumor tissues and can accelerate the differentiation, proliferation, and migration of endothelial cells.” The results seem to suggest that cordyceps showed inhibitory effects of the VEGF/VEGFR2 signaling pathway and exerted antiangiogenesis functions.
- Cordyceps militaris extract induces apoptosis in prostate cancer cells through various signaling pathways. Research found that the water extract of cordyceps could “inhibit cell growth of U937 cells in a dose-dependent manner, which was associated with morphological change and apoptotic cell death such as formation of apoptotic bodies and DNA fragmentation.” A different study discovered that cordyceps’ adenosine can cause liver cancer cell apoptosis by damaging energy-producing mitochondria in liver cancer cells.
Adenosine is a type of nucleoside, a molecule used to make DNA and RNA. It is responsible for a wide range of physiological activities, such as sleep, blood pressure, and inflammation. We’ve seen how adenosine causes cell death in liver cancer, but this powerful bioactive component in cordyceps also induces apoptosis in colon cancer.
…a TNFR1/RIPK1/P38 axis is present in adenosine-induced apoptosis of colonic cancer cells. This axis triggers apoptosis and plays crucial roles in relay of the death signaling. Our study also provides additional experimental evidence for adenosine as a potent therapeutic drug in cancer therapy. (Yu, et. al.)
Cordyceps mushrooms seem to help fight ovarian cancer as well, which is terrific news for women everywhere. Korean researchers looked into the effects of cordycepin, an adenosine derivative, on cancer cells and found that “adenosine derivatives of Cordyceps induced autophagic cell death in ovarian cancer.”
Autophagy is a process in which cells digest and recycle their own components. The adenosine derivatives entered the human ovarian cancer cells and activated the AMPK protein, which in turn triggered autophagy. The study findings suggest that adenosine derivatives like cordycepin can lead to the degradation and elimination of cancer cells through autophagy.
Antitumor Effects of Cordycepin
Cordycepin (3-deoxyadenosine) is a naturally occurring molecule found in cordyceps mushrooms. It seems that it possesses strong cytotoxic effects:cordycepin may induce apoptosis and prevent the spread of tumor cells. Studies reveal that cordycepin interferes with all the processes important for cancer survival: angiogenesis, cell proliferation, immunomodulation, and tumor growth.
A 2019 study confirms the extraordinary antitumor effects of cordycepin.
Cordycepin inhibited the proliferation, wound healing, transwell migration, and tube formation of endothelial cells… cordycepin suppressed angiogenesis in an in vivo angiogenesis assay and reduced HCC tumor growth in a xenograft nude mice model. Our study indicated that cordycepin could attenuate cell proliferation and migration and may result in the impairment of the angiogenesis process and tumor growth…
Cordycepin treatment also prevents cancer cells from spreading to other body parts and invading healthy cells. This is the process called metastasis, and it’s one of the most vital elements of tumor survival.
Research on cancer and cordyceps mushrooms shows that “cordycepin treatment reduced the chemotactic migration ability of liver cancer cells” and that it had a “positive effect on two different liver cancer cell lines, which suggests that it might be a valuable drug for cancer treatment.”
Do Polysaccharides Fight Cancer?
Polysaccharides are a group of bioactive components found in Cordyceps militaris and Cordyceps sinensis. They have shown impressive immunomodulatory, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidant properties that help fight cancer.
Chronic inflammation has been associated with an increased risk of cancer development and progression. According to research, anti-inflammatory polysaccharides help reduce the production of inflammatory proteins and inhibit the activation of inflammatory pathways.
Remember how cordyceps mushrooms boost our bodies’ immune function and help kick cancer’s butt? Polysaccharides might be one powerful method of enhancing the activity and effectiveness of immune cells, such as natural killer cells, macrophages, and T-cells. These play a crucial role in identifying and eliminating cancer cells.
…proved the immunostimulatory activity of the polysaccharide fractions isolated from C. militaris, and the tested polysaccharides were shown to induce an immune response in vitro after stimulating the activity of macrophages to produce NO, IL-1β, interferon (IFN -γ), tumor necrosis factor (TNF-α), T and B lymphocytes and natural killer (NK) cells as well as increased phagocytosis by macrophages. (Jędrejko, et. al.)
In other words, polysaccharides make immune-boosting macrophage cells active in our body, while making T and B cells (a type of immune cell) and natural killer cells stronger.
These are only some of the mighty effects of Cordyceps militaris and its bioactive compounds on cancer. Let’s see how cordyceps mushrooms help fight prostate cancer and help men maintain prostate health.
Can Cordyceps Treat Prostate Cancer?
We’ve seen some powerful anticancer effects of the super-fungi on cancer more generally.Research shows that cordyceps has the potential to inhibit the growth of prostate cancer cells specifically.
A group of researchers examined the effects of Cordyceps militaris fruit bodies on human prostate cancer cells (LNCaP cells). They focused mainly on the inhibitory effects of cordycepin on cell invasion and cancer cell apoptosis. Results suggest that cordycepin treatment can in fact inhibit the migration and invasion of prostate cancer cells by activating caspases, enzymes involved in programmed cell death.
Cordyceps militaris extract can help maintain normal levels of testosterone and dihydrotestosterone (DHT) in the blood and reduce prostate cancer cell growth.
Given that the CM-induced decrease in prostate hyperplasia was independent of the serum level of testosterone, CM may regulate the proliferation of prostate cells by inhibiting the activation of intracellular signal pathways other than those involved in testosterone signaling. (Kusama, et. al.)
In adult males, testosterone and dihydrotestosterone (DHT) are important hormones that play a role in sexual function, libido, muscle growth, bone health, and even mood and cognition. An imbalance in these hormones can lead to late-onset hypogonadism (LOH) and benign prostate hyperplasia (BPH). While these conditions haven’t been directly linked to prostate cancer, hormones can play a role in aiding the development and progression of prostate cancer cells.
The chronic inflammation involved in benign prostatic hyperplasia can promote cell growth and potentially contribute to the progression of cancer. It’s a good thing cordyceps mushrooms contain anti-inflammatory compounds that help reduce inflammation in the prostate gland.
While cordyceps shows great potential for kicking prostate cancer to the curb, it should not be used as a standalone treatment. The mushroom can complement conventional prostate cancer treatments, enhance the patients’ immune response, and alleviate nasty chemotherapy-related side effects.
Does Cordyceps Increase Testosterone?
Testosterone is the primary male sex hormone. It belongs to a class of hormones called androgens. It is primarily produced in the testicles in males, although smaller amounts are also produced in the adrenal glands. Here are some of the most important roles played by testosterone:
- Testosterone helps develop and maintain male sexual characteristics and reproductive function.
- Testosterone influences the development of secondary sexual characteristics: facial hair, body hair, muscle strength, bone density, deepening of the voice, and sperm production.
- Testosterone contributes to overall well-being in men, mood regulation, and certain metabolic processes.
- Testosterone plays an important role in the development and growth of the prostate gland, maintaining its size and function.
All this and more are reasons why it’s important to keep testosterone levels within a healthy range. Abnormal testosterone levels, either too low or too high, can potentially disrupt the normal growth and function of the prostate and may contribute to the development or progression of prostate-related conditions such as prostate hyperplasia or cancer.
Cordyceps militaris has been traditionally used as a natural remedy for increasing levels of testosterone. A study published in The American Journal of Chinese Medicine investigated the effects of Cordyceps militaris supplementation on sperm production and mobility in a rat model. The cordyceps supplementation increased the levels of testosterone in the rats' serum. Findings suggest an increase in the number of motile sperm cells in the groups that received cordyceps supplementation.
In a different study, researchers aimed to investigate the effects of the Cordyceps militaris fruit body extract on LOH and BPH in a rat model. The results showed that the cordyceps extract helped maintain healthy levels of testosterone and DHT in rats. These findings suggest that Cordyceps militaris extract has the potential to improve symptoms of LOH and BPH in men and contribute to overall prostate health.
Why Is Cordyceps Known as Natural Viagra?
The rumors are true: cordyceps is called “natural Viagra” in traditional Chinese medicine. Cordyceps mushrooms have been traditionally used to improve sexual function in men and women. Here’s why:
- In medicines of the Far East, cordyceps is believed to be an aphrodisiac;it can enhance sexual desire and improve libido. A 2020 study on rats found that cordyceps mushroom cultures may boost testosterone, improve erection and testicular function, and increase sex drive. Consuming these extraordinary fungi can increase energy, stamina, and vitality—all you need for a healthy sexual performance.
- Cordyceps may also be able to modulate the endocrine system and regulate levels of hormones, including testosterone. In men, testosterone is the key to healthy sexual function.
- Cordyceps is terrific for the heart. It decreases blood pressure and improves circulation, and as you may already know, circulation is crucial for normal sexual performance in men. Normal blood flow may help achieve and maintain erections.
- As an adaptogen, cordyceps helps the body adapt to stress and stave off anxiety. When you’re relaxed and stress-free, you may perform better with the ladies.
Benefits of Cordyceps for Men
Let’s sum up the benefits of consuming cordyceps mushrooms for men.
- Antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that help fight prostate and testicular cancer.
- Immune system support. A healthy immune system is crucial for overall well-being and defense against illnesses.
- Increased energy and stamina. Cordyceps may help boost your athletic performance and physical endurance.
- Increasing testosterone levels. Normal levels of testosterone are vital for men’s overall health. By increasing testosterone, cordyceps helps with muscle mass and growth.
- Enhanced sexual function. The natural Viagra—need we say more?
If you’re looking for a natural way to boost your testosterone and improve your health, cordyceps mushrooms are the way to go. Our cordyceps tea contains so many beneficial compounds that we can’t count them all. But we can say that matcha’s L-theanine is another great friend to your testosterone, fellas.
Read more about L-theanine, this all-around awesome amino acid found in matcha, and learn all about its calming effects on our body.
Cordyceps Mushrooms Side Effects
Cordyceps is completely safe to consume every day. A small number of people might experience some milder side effects when consuming cordyceps for the first time. These may include:
- Upset stomach
In fact, the side effects of consuming cordyceps mushrooms for the first time aren’t that different from consuming any other mushroom, spice, or herb for the first time. These effects subside quickly, but if discomfort persists after a day or two, stop using the mushroom products and consult with a healthcare professional.
We recommend starting with lower doses, between 1 and 3 grams of powder per day. See how you feel after two to three weeks of regular consumption, and feel free to increase the dosage if you experience nothing but improvement in your overall health.
You’re in luck because our matcha mushroom box contains 10 packets of the most delicious blend in the world of supplements. Each packet contains 3.5 grams of tea powder, which is perfect for either one energetic cup of morning boost or two or even three cups of relaxing afternoon tea.
If you’re pregnant, breastfeeding, or planning to get pregnant, speak with your doctor before adding cordyceps to your diet.
The Best Time to Take Cordyceps
The best time of day to consume cordyceps is in the morning or early afternoon.Cordyceps is known for its potential to boost energy levels and improve mental focus. Taking it in the morning or early afternoon can provide you with a natural, invigorating, and delicious boost in energy that will keep you alert and sharp throughout the day.
Don’t forget that our cordyceps tea is combined with organic ceremonial matcha powder and that matcha contains caffeine and other energy-increasing compounds. Drinking matcha later in the day is completely up to you, but it can affect sleep quality if consumed too close to bedtime.
Also, consuming cordyceps earlier in the day allows the body to take advantage of its metabolic benefits. A cup of cordyceps tea in the morning can support energy metabolism and help regulate appetite and nutrient absorption.
Do you know how beneficial cordyceps mushrooms are for your digestive health? They help keep our gut microbiota in balance, and a healthy gut is the core of healthy digestion. That’s another reason to order our 30-serving jar of heavenly cordyceps tea. Cheers to a healthy gut and vitality!
Cordyceps For Prostate Cancer FAQ
Is cordyceps good for prostate health?
Research suggests that cordyceps may have potential benefits for prostate health, but more studies are needed to fully understand its effects. Cordyceps militaris fruit bodies were associated with a reduction in prostate size in benign prostatic hyperplasia patients.
Is cordyceps good for cancer patients?
Cordyceps has been studied for its potential anticancer properties. In laboratory studies, cordyceps extracts have shown inhibitory effects on cancer cell growth, including lung cancer cells and carcinoma cells. However, these studies were conducted in vitro or on animal models. Cancer patients should consult with healthcare professionals before considering any complementary or alternative therapies.
Who should not take Cordyceps militaris?
While cordyceps is generally considered safe for most people, certain individuals should exercise caution or avoid its use. This includes:
- People who have undergone recent organ transplants, as cordyceps may interact with immunosuppressant medications.
- People with known allergies to fungi or mushrooms.
- Pregnant or breastfeeding women.
As with any supplement, consult with a healthcare professional before adding cordyceps or any new dietary supplement to your diet.
What should I avoid when taking cordyceps?
When taking cordyceps, avoid excessive amounts of alcohol. Alcohol may counteract the desired effects of cordyceps. Additionally, if you’re on specific medications or with pre-existing medical conditions, consult with your healthcare provider to make sure there are no potential interactions or contraindications.
Should men take cordyceps?
Cordyceps is considered suitable for both men and women. Men may consider cordyceps supplementation for potential benefits such as supporting energy levels, exercise performance, and overall vitality. However, individual responses may vary, and it is advisable to consult with a healthcare professional to determine if cordyceps is appropriate for your specific needs and health status.
Do cordyceps work immediately?
Cordyceps takes some time to work its magic. It may take several weeks or even months of consistent use before you see noticeable effects. Patience and adherence to recommended dosages are important when incorporating cordyceps into your wellness routine.
Is it OK to take cordyceps at night?
Taking cordyceps at night is safe, but nighttime might not be the best time to consume cordyceps. As already mentioned, cordyceps doesn’t make you sleepy and can even make you feel more energized.
If you're taking cordyceps for energy and physical endurance, it might be better to take it during the day or before hitting the gym.
Is cordyceps good for lungs?
Cordyceps has been traditionally used in Chinese herbal medicine for respiratory health. Cordyceps extracts have shown inhibitory effects on lung cancer cells and non-small cell lung cancer.Studies on respiratory diseases suggest that cordyceps might be able to improve lung health and pulmonary function.
Read more about the effects of cordyceps on lung cancer.
While more human studies are needed to completely understand the effects of Cordyceps militaris on respiratory function, the mushrooms may be a promising natural therapy for improving lung health.
Is cordyceps good for kidneys?
Cordyceps may support kidney function. Cordycepin (3-deoxyadenosine) seems to slow down the activity of genes (TLR4 and NF-B signaling pathways) that are involved in inflammatory processes in our bodies. According to a study, the anti-inflammatory qualities of cordyceps may treat chronic kidney disease.
Cordyceps even shows potential for offering support and quicker recuperation after a renal transplantation. Renal transplantation involves the transplantation of a healthy kidney into a patient with end-stage renal disease. Cordyceps is believed to improve kidney function by reducing inflammation and increasing blood flow, as blood circulation is necessary for the normal functioning of our kidneys.
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