On the Trail of The Yak:Ancient Cordyceps in the Modern World

  1. lutherblsstt
    lutherblsstt's Avatar

    On the Trail of The Yak:Ancient Cordyceps in the Modern World

    If you want to learn everything there is to know about Cordyceps - this 63 page article is the place to start. Great information on the health benefits of Cordyceps, complete with extensive footnotes and references for further research.


    One thing I did not know was " Cordyceps sinensis, whose stroma or fruitbody extend from the mummified carcasses of insect larvae,usually caterpillar larva of the Himalayan Bat Moth, Hepialis armoricanus." !

    "Another issue that has been raised regarding the quality of Cordyceps is the possibility of lead contamination. This is from reports that have arisen from cases of Lead Poisoning caused by consuming wild collected Cordyceps in China and Taiwan. (Wu et al 1996). This does not actually have to do with the Cordyceps, but rather with another practice of adulteration long practiced by the collectors of the natural Cordyceps.

    The Cordyceps as found in the natural state is attached to the mummified body of the caterpillar from which it arose. It is harvested whole in this way; dried and supplied into the market complete – caterpillar and fruitbody connected. Because the Cordyceps is sold by weight, the collectors have historically inserted a small bit of twig into many of the caterpillars.

    This results in an increase in weight, and a bit more money for the collectors when taken to market. Better quality Cordyceps traditionally had fewer inserted sticks, but the practice has been so widespread for so long that it is virtually impossible to find any wild collected Cordyceps without some of these fillers inserted. While this is not an entirely ethical practice, it is probably a harmless one. As long as the type of twig inserted is from some non-toxic species of plant. But that is where the problem comes in. In our modern age, the collectors have found that they can gain much more weight if they insert a bit of wire into the caterpillar rather than the traditional twig. As long as the wire is steel, again this is probably not too harmful of a practice.

    But unfortunately, the wire of choice is lead solder due to its greater weight. The local tribes people that collect these wild Cordyceps for a living are generally not well educated, and few of them realize the dangers they are introducing into the product. They are merely trying to gain an economic advantage in the best way they know how.

    Consumption of these bits of lead wire, especially over long periods of time, can create a serious lead poisoning issue. Compounding this problem is the groups of patients most likely to be consuming Cordyceps over long periods of time are the ones most at risk: the elderly and infirm.

    Anyone who wishes to use the wild collected Cordyceps rather than the cultivated variety would be well advised to break each of the caterpillars in half before use, so that any bits of foreign matter can be readily discerned.

    Cordyceps does not accumulate lead or other heavy metals any more so than other fungi. The problem is not, and has never been in the Cordyceps itself. It is in the lead wire. In that way, the artificially cultivated Cordyceps is much safer. There is no lead used in cultivating Cordyceps, and the adulteration of a dry powdered product with lead is neither practical nor really even possible, so there is no risk of lead poisoning with the use of cultivated Cordyceps."

  2. lutherblsstt
    lutherblsstt's Avatar

    [ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CCOQ0VU24xw"]YouTube - Cordyceps Fungus[/ame]

Similar Forum Threads

  1. NTBM N2 Mix High Protein Trail Mix Its Tastin Time!!
    By mich29 in forum Supplement Logs
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 12-26-2010, 09:16 PM
  2. Is Trail Mix and Dried fruits and such a
    By freezito in forum Nutrition / Health
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 11-19-2006, 03:32 AM
  3. On the comeback trail
    By NickW in forum Powerlifting/Strongman
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 10-27-2006, 11:57 PM
  4. Paper Trail
    By viking in forum Anabolics
    Replies: 15
    Last Post: 04-25-2004, 06:30 AM
Log in
Log in