Friday, November 23, 2007

Ghagra shak


This is a picture of some of our data collectors just before leaving for the field again last week. They'll be back tomorrow. For those of you interested in an update on our outbreak investigation...

We've determined that people became sick and died from toxic poisoning after eating seedlings of a local wild plant called ghagra shak. It's in the Xanthium genus and is known to cause similar symptoms and death in livestock who eat it. The plant is safe to eat when mature, however. We think that they're eating more of these plants this year because of inflation- the plants grow wild and are therefore free food. Also, the floods lasted longer than usual this year so the plans are younger than they usually would be this time of year. At least now we have a useful public health message which we hope will prevent future deaths- don't eat ghagra shak!

1 comment:

rahima said...

emily, I also tried 'ghagra shak' sometimes. That vegetable is really good. I dont' know what happened to them.....