Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Cordyceps Sinensis

Himalayas witnessing trafficking of rich resource Keeda Jadi!
#keedajadi #himalayas #uttarakand #ophiocordyceps #yatsagumba
#chinesemedicine #cordycepin #cordymin #galactomannans#sterols

New Delhi: The Himalayas contain numerous medicinal plants and various ‘Ayurvedic Oshadhis’ which have the power to save human lives. In the high Himalayas of ‘dev bhoomi’ Uttarakhand, every year, families including children trudge up to altitudes between 3,500 and 5,000 m to seize the rich biological resource ‘Keeda Jadi’. It is said to be the most expensive biological resource which is worth more than gold. A kilogram of the fungus - between 3,500 and 4,000 pieces - sells for about Rs. 10 lakh.

Keeda Jadi has great demand in China as doctors there prescribe it as a panacea for various ailments since about the 14th century. This magical and rich resource happens across the Himalayas, especially in the Kumaon region at the higher altitudes, as summer sets in and the snow (glacier) melts, exposing the mummified caterpillars. In India, there are no stringent norms for the trading and recovery of this resource and hence people are now involved in its trafficking.

Locally known as keeda or keeda jadi, it is better known elsewhere as the caterpillar fungus or by its Tibetan name yartsa gumba. Its scientific name is Ophiocordyceps Sinensis.
Sources say that people are now adopting unnatural measures to melt the glaciers which are also a disaster for the environment. Ophiocordyceps Sinensis mainly occurs when the winter snows begin to melt in early May.

Cordyceps Sinensis (1) which is said to have myriad uses including as an aphrodisiac - is only found in the Tibetan Plateau and the Himalayas, though its scientific relatives have been known to be found in the ancient forests of New Zealand.

In the 1990s, when some Chinese athletes attributed their success in international competitions to yartsa gumba, its demand began to soar. In the early 2000s, it became famed for its supposed aphrodisiac qualities and acquired the moniker Himalayan Viagra, leading to another surge in demand.

Government should shift its focus in preserving the rich resource and also should keep a check on people causing damage to environment by melting glaciers at uneven times.


Keeda Jadi , 
Himalayas , 
Uttarakhand , 
Ophiocordyceps Sinensis , 
Yartsa Gumba , 
Chinese Medicine