Now Foods Cordyceps is a product of Now Foods. The label shows that the product contains 750mg of Cordyceps powder, however on the seller’s website it is advised that each capsules contains 1,500mg. So it is unclear how many mg each capsule contains.
As was mentioned before, the active elements of Cordyceps are polysaccharides and cordycepin. The extraction of cordycepin is a quite complicated and expensive process. Just to give you an idea, I summarize the extraction process as follows:
Approximate 1.0 g dried powder of Cordyceps sinensis extracted with 10 ml solution of water and methanol (90:10, V/V) in a 25 ml centrifuge tube it was then placed in an ultrasonicator for 30 minutes and then centrifuged. Supernatant was collected and residue obtained after centrifugation was re-extraction was two times and exact 25 ml volume was made. Above extract was filtrated through a 0.45 μm filter in to a 1 ml vial and 10 μl injections was made in the HPLC.
The concentration of polysaccharides and cordycepin in Cordyceps powder is very low, which makes the product much- much less effective.
Cordyceps extract contains a significantly higher concentration of nutritional elements, such as vitamins, amino acids, minerals, essential fatty acids, enzymes, polysaccharides and other active chemical elements.
For instance, concentration of polysaccharides in Cordyceps powder does not exceed 5% while this percentage is much higher in the extract. However, it is important to know that concentration of active elements in Cordyceps extract products can vary significantly.
In addition, some of the nutritional elements, including the immune-supporting polysaccharides, are located inside the Cordyceps cell walls, which are made from an indigestible fibre called chitin – the same material a lobster shell is made of.
When Cordyceps is in powder form, polysaccharides have no way to interact with our immune system.
Hot water extraction is the only clinically validated method for breaking these polysaccharides out of the indigestible cell walls.
Lastly, if you take a deeper look into the research done on Cordyceps, you will note that most of the studies are based on the use of Cordyceps extract.
The manufacture process of the Cordyceps extract is quite expensive and the higher the polysaccharides concentration the higher the costs. If you want to buy a quality product that will be effective and taking 1 to 2 capsules will be sufficient to stimulate immune response and restore normal functions of the body.
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