Thursday, June 26, 2008
Description: sweet, warm; affects the lungs and kidneys
Cordyceps sinensis also called the "caterpillar fungus" is highly regarded in China as a tonic for those who are recovering from an illness or an operation, or after giving birth. In these cases, the Cordyceps helps the patient recover their physical power, to improve their appetite, and to protect the body from infection. Cordyceps belongs to the family of mushrooms, which are actually parasitic organisms, growing wildly on the caterpillars in the high plateaus of China, Nepal, and Tibet. The fruiting body of Cordyceps looks like grass, which is why the Chinese call it Winter Worm - Summer Grass. Because it contains both Yin and Yang properties, it apparently is safe for use by anyone and even for a long period.
Among the numerous species, Cordyceps sinensis is the most famous and expensive due to its curing properties. It is a type of "super-ginseng" for rejuvenation and stamina amongst the elderly.
Dr. Georges Halpern, the author of several books about this fungus, and other scientists and herbalists confirm that the mushroom can:
• stimulate the immune system
• cure sexual dysfunction in both men and women
• maximize body oxygen uptake
• build muscles
• improve kidney, liver, and lung function
• provide anti-aging and rejuvenation effect
• strengthen the skeletal structure, and specifically benefits the lower back region, the knees and ankles
• help the body resist a wide range of pathogenic bacteria, fungi and viruses.
Although, wild Cordyceps are the most powerful in effects, they are quite expensive and difficult to buy in many parts of the world. Therefore, many manufacturers do not use Cordyceps sinensis, but the cultivated forms of the fungus (C. ophioglossoides, C. capita, and C. militaris) in their commercial preparations.
Several institutions in China and Japan are currently researching the potential use of Cordyceps to treat certain varieties of cancer.
This is a cheap variety of cordyceps that we use for cooking soup.