8 min read
Mushrooms have been a staple in traditional Chinese medicine for at least 5000 years .
Eastern medicine uses at least 272 different species of mushrooms  for purposes such as treating cancer, diabetes, HIV/AIDS, the common cold, hypertension, heart disease, infection, obesity, and many more illnesses and diseases.
Those fortunate enough also used mushrooms recreationally – and not just the magical ones!
While even psilocybin (the active ingredient in magic ‘shrooms) can be used below pharmaceutical levels for improved cognition, several other species confer physiological benefits.
Let's see how these medicinal mushrooms can improve your endurance performance
Peak O2 is a supplement that is a combination of six different mushroom strains which act as potent adaptogens.
Adaptogens help athletes overcome mental and physical stressors during exercise and activities of daily living.
Peak O2 also contains high levels of L-Ergothioneine and beta-glucans. These two compounds are powerful anti-oxidants that combat oxidative stress.
Research has demonstrated that Peak O2 can:
Peak O2 should be dosed at 1-4 grams daily. It is important to note Peak O2 should be taken every day as it works better when you load it.
Peak O2 should be taken 30 - 60 minutes before exercise. Additional doses (above 1 gram) can be taken throughout the day if needed to reach 4 grams daily.
Cordyceps Militaris is the primary mushroom in the Peak O2 blend found in PerformElite.
There are two popular types of cordyceps mushrooms
The two are not equals, however.
Cordyceps Militaris is far superior to Cordyceps Sinensis.
In fact, in 2007, taxonomists reclassified Sinensis into an entirely different family of mushrooms. This is to say that, as far as biologists are concerned, Sinensis is more like a second cousin of Militaris than it is a brother or sister, and their differences are pretty pronounced.
Militaris has demonstrated several effects that improve performance including, but not limited to, increasing vasodilation and blood flow to increase nutrient delivery and metabolite clearance, enhancing oxygen utilization, and improving metabolic efficiency [4, 9, 20, 27, 28].
A recently published study in the Journal of Dietary Supplements found Cordyceps Militaris to increase VO2Max, lactate threshold, and time to exhaustion .
In this study, participants were tested after 1 and 3 weeks of supplementation and compared to placebo. Even after 1 week, Cordyceps Militaris improved time to exhaustion by 28 seconds. However, at 3 weeks, performance was improved by 70 seconds!
This is one reason why it is suggested to use PerformElite regularly.
Otherwise known as Reishi or the “supernatural” mushroom, Ganoderma Lucidum is one of the most popular mushrooms worldwide.
Reishi mushrooms are well-known for their antioxidant activity .
It is so robust that it can protect DNA , improve mitochondrial function [3, 25], and increase ATP production . Each of these points are invaluable to athletes because nothing can be achieved without DNA, the mitochondria are the sites where ATP is produced, and ATP is the body’s major energy source!
If that impresses you, take a deep breath.
Supplementation with a Reishi mushroom extract improved swimming time to exhaustion by an astounding 10 minutes!
Even more stunning is that it occurred with a simultaneously reduced reliance on muscle and liver glycogen, resulting in lower lactate levels, and increased reliance on fat as fuel !
Pleurotus Eryngii’s easy name is King Trumpet.
King Trumpet mushrooms have high concentrations of the antioxidant L-ergothioneine .
L-ergothioneine is an interesting antioxidant, as the body does not produce any on its own. However, it still has dedicated cellular transporters, which suggests it has significant biological relevance .
It appears that L-ergothioneine is particularly important during periods of high stress , such as exercise.
Have you ever become sick following a really tough workout or a few days of hard workouts? One negative aspect of exercise is it can hamper the immune system.
King Trumpet can completely block the negative effects of exercise on the immune system.
Supplementation with an extract of King Trumpet mushrooms prevented a 28% decrease in immune function in elite athletes .
This is especially important because elite athletes are going to have the greatest adaptation to exercise and be the most resistant to compromised immunity.
Otherwise known as Shiitake, this mushroom is the second most common mushroom in the world.
It shares a few functions with King Trumpet as an immune booster and antioxidant.
Shiitake mushrooms have also been heavily researched as an anti-cancer food .
Perfect for endurance athletes that are outside running in the elements and bumping shoulders with herds at the starting line!
The Lion’s Mane mushroom. It actually looks like a Lion’s mane!
The ancient Greeks and Romans used to eat lion hearts for courage – this is kind of the same thing. Kind of.
Lion’s mane is a supplement that primarily improves the functioning of the nervous system.
One phytochemical found in Lion’s Mane mushrooms, amycenone, is a nootropic .
Nootropics are a class of supplements that improve cognitive function. This is a wide range of categories including reaction time, processing speed, memory, and more.
Stimulating the release of nerve growth factor is another function of Lion’s Mane , and that means greater protection of nerves from damage (such as with injury, even smaller ones), improvement of motor skills, and perhaps recovery from injury.
Or more simply, Turkey Tail.
Despite looking like a stability ball, turkeys can actually get going pretty fast at 25 mph, so any crazy Roman magic is welcome here too.
This mushroom gets the name Versicolordue to varying color patterns. The most common of which looks just like a turkey tail.
The mushroom contains two active carbohydrate components, called polysaccharide Kurcha and polysaccharide-protein complex.
To date, no research or adverse events have been reported from the consumption of Peak O2.
Peak O2 is a researched supplement that can improve the maximum volume of O2 athletes can utilize over time while also helping them to use it more efficiently.
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