Host Defense Cordyceps Capsules

Host Defense $19.95

Host Defense Cordyceps Capsules

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These Host Defense Cordyceps Capsules are sure to ignite the fruiting bodies vs mycelium debate.

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Host Defense is an interesting brand in the functional and medicinal mushroom industry. First, the are founded by Paul Stamets, an icon of the fungi industry. And the one notable thing about these Host Defense Cordyceps Capsules is they are made with mycelium instead of fruiting bodies. But what’s really notable about that notable, is that they brag about it as a positive. If you’re new to medicinal mushroom supplements, you should know that conventional wisdom says that fruiting bodies are better than mycelium. (The fruiting body is the part of the mushroom above ground, while mycelium is the root system.)

In short, the fruiting body is thought to have a higher concentration of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals that people love about medicinal mushrooms. The mycelium, on the other hand, does not. Now, according to Host Defense, these capsules have the a full spectrum of polysaccharides (beta glucans, arabinoxylane, glucose, xylose, galactose and cordycepic acid), glycoproteins, ergosterols, triterpenoids and other myco-nutrients. Ya know, a totally normal lunch. So they contain all that good stuff that people trumpet about fruiting bodies.

The thing is, Stamets and his team of mycologists know their stuff. And Stamets isn’t a guy who needs to slap his name on a product to make a quick buck. After some research he truly believes that mycelium has all the good stuff (if not more) than fruiting bodies. (They even mention “primordia” in their products, which are also referred to as “baby fruiting bodies.”)

It’s a platform he is proud to stand on. So who are we to knock him off? Given his street cred, we suggest looking into his stance and making your own decisions. It’s definitely made us reconsider.

WHAT ARE THESE Host Defense Cordyceps Capsules?

These are capsules full of cordyceps extract. Cordyceps are not technically mushrooms, but they are grouped into the medicinal mushroom category. The FDA hasn’t approved any medicinal mushroom products to help treat or cure any disease. But Asian cultures have been taking cordyceps for centuries. They have used it as a homeopathic remedy to increase energy and stamina. There was a study that came out a number of years ago that claimed that cordyceps helped increase oxygen intake. But we need much more research to back that anecdotal evidence up in the United States.

Does this Use Fruiting Bodies or Mycelium? 

Mycelium! Yes, I know that we always harp on the importance of buying brands that use fruiting bodies. But, we feel that Mr. Stamets has earned the right to be heard. And his loud voice may go towards changing the conventional wisdom around the fruiting body vs mycelium debate.

They grow their mycelium on organic brown rice.


These comes in 30, 90 and 120 capsule per bottle. Each capsule contains 225mgs of cordyceps extract. And they suggest taking two capsules per day.

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WILL THESE Host Defense Cordyceps Capsules GET YOU HIGH?

No! These aren’t those types of mushrooms. They have some magical properties according to Asian and Eastern European cultures, but they aren’t “magic mushrooms.” They will not get you high in any way. Unless the thought of tons of antioxidants gets you really jazzed. (We don’t judge.) (Well, we do judge, but not for that.)

Also Read: These are the 5 best medicinal mushrooms to add to your diet


We always recommend starting with a slightly less than recommended dose. And we give that advice for any supplement. It’s always better to be safe than sorry in case you have an unexpected reaction. Since they suggest two Host Defense Cordyceps Capsules per day, start with one and see how you feel. If you’re fine after a few hours then you should be good to go. Feel free to move up to the recommended dose.


Medicinal mushroom extracts are not going to make you feel totally amazing 15 minutes later. Think about these like you would any other vitamin or mineral supplement. You take them because you believe in their benefits. Not because they are going to mask a pain or make you feel superhuman. Incorporate these into your diet and have a little patience.

Yes, totally. These are just as legal as the mushrooms in your grocery store or on your pizza. Just with a lot more antioxidants.

ARE THESE Host Defense Cordyceps Capsules TESTED AND CERTIFIED?

We can’t find anything about testing on their website (maybe we missed it?) But they have a very thorough and informative FAQ section that gives us confidence that they care and are extremely knowledge about the quality and safety of their products.

These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA and are not intended to diagnose, treat, or cure any disease. Always check with your physician before starting a new dietary supplement program.