On the Trail of The Yak
Ancient Cordyceps in the Modern World
Cordyceps is a rare and exotic medicinal mushroom, known in China for centuries. One that reportedly has a number of far reaching medicinal effects. Most people in the West have come to know this rare herbal medicine in only the last twenty years or so. During that time, modern scientific investigation into its seemingly miraculous range of healing powers has proven what Chinese practitioners have noted for centuries: That it works well in combating a myriad of medicals problems. This chapter is an overview of the description and uses for this once rare medicinal treasure.
A medicinal herb of long and illustrious history, Cordyceps sinensis is an Ascomycetes fungus closely related to the mushrooms. While not actually a mushroom in the taxonomic sense, it has been regarded as, and called, a medicinal mushroom throughout history. We will continue that tradition in this paper – referring to it as a mushroom. Please excuse such literary license.