Caterpillar fungus

Caterpillar fungus (Chinese Herbs)

The caterpillar fungus is a traditional medicine that has been widely used as a tonic and/or medicine by the Chinese for hundreds of years. The use of this fungus was relatively unknown in this country until it was credited for the success of Chinese women athletes at the National Games in Beijing, in 1993. Three Chinese track runners set new world records during the Games at three different distances, 10,000 m, 15,000 m and 30,000 m. Their coach, Ma Zunren, attributed the runner’s success to intensive training as well as a stress-relieving tonic prepared from the caterpillar fungus.

In the old days, Chinese people thought that the caterpillar fungus (Dong chong xiz cao) were worms. However, after years of study, it was found that it really is a fruiting body produced by the fungus, Cordyceps sinesis, on dead caterpillars of the moth Hepilus fabricius.

Some people believe the caterpillar fungus cures tuberculosis, coughing, anemia, and back and knee pains. Today, the caterpillar fungus is mainly used as a tonic to increase strength or for rejuvenation after a long serious injury.

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