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- The Characteristics and Roles of Medicinal Plants: Some Important Medicinal Plants in Nigeria
- The Characteristics and Roles of Medicinal Plants: Some Important Medicinal Plants in Nigeria
- Medicinal plants
Today, we live in a time when manufactured medicines and prescriptions prevail, but do they have to be the only approach to healing? Even with all of these engineered options at our fingertips, many people find themselves turning back to the medicinal plants that started it all: Herbal remedies that have the ability to heal and boost physical and mental well-being. While these manufactured drugs have certainly become paramount in our lives, it can be comforting to know that the power of nature is on our side, and these herbal choices are available to complement our health practices.
The Characteristics and Roles of Medicinal Plants: Some Important Medicinal Plants in Nigeria
The main purpose of this review is to document medicinal plants used for traditional treatments with their parts, use, ecology, and quality control. Accordingly, 80 medicinal plant species were reviewed; leaves and roots are the main parts of the plants used for preparation of traditional medicines.
The uses of medicinal plants for human and animal treatments are practiced from time immemorial. Generally, medicinal plants used for traditional medicine play a significant role in the healthcare of the majority of the people in Ethiopia. The major threats to medicinal plants are habitat destruction, urbanization, agricultural expansion, investment, road construction, and deforestation.
Because of these, medicinal plants are being declined and lost with their habitats. Community- and research-based conservation mechanisms could be an appropriate approach for mitigating the problems pertinent to the loss of medicinal plants and their habitats and for documenting medicinal plants.
Chromatography; electrophoretic, macroscopic, and microscopic techniques; and pharmaceutical practice are mainly used for quality control of herbal medicines. Medicinal plants are very vital in their uses for medication, besides providing ecological, economic, and cultural services. The world primary means of treating diseases and fighting infections have been based on the use of medicinal plants. From ancient times, plants have been rich sources of effective and safe medicines [ 1 ].
Since the country is characterized by a wide range of ecological, edaphic, and climatic condition, Ethiopia is also very diverse in its flora composition [ 4 ]. The medicinal plants have been used for various types of human and animal treatments in the country. As also stated by many authors e. Even due to the trust of communities on medicinal values of traditional medicines, culturally associated traditions, and their relatively low cost, medicinal plants are highly demanded in Ethiopia [ 7 ].
Inadequate health centers and shortage of medicines and personnel in clinics might be the other reasons for driving the people of Ethiopia, in general, and the low-income community and the rural people, in particular, to the traditional health centers, whereby increasing the demand of medicinal plants. However, these plants have got little attention regarding the documentation of scientific names, uses, ecology, and conservation in Ethiopia, in particular and world-wise, in general.
Moreover, in Ethiopia, traditional medicine is faced with a problem of sustainability and continuity mainly due to the loss of taxa of medicinal plants [ 8 , 9 ] besides having lack of quality control for herbal medicines. The main causes for the loss and decline of diversity of plants in Ethiopia are human-made factors [ 10 , 11 , 12 ].
Habitat destruction and deforestation for commercial timber and forest encroachment for urbanization, investment, agriculture, and other land uses are the major causes of the loss of many thousand hectares of forest that harbor medicinal plants yearly for the past several decades.
In addition to these, the medicinal plant materials and associated traditional knowledge are being lost due to the lack of systematic conservation, research, proper utilization, and documentation [ 13 ]. The knowledge on identifying and managing the medicinal plants with their parts, use, and ecology is mostly associated with local and elder people, who transmitted their knowledge verbally.
Such verbal transmissions of knowledge on medicinal plants have thus resulted in eroding and loss of knowledge and the plant materials as well. The quantity and quality of the safety and efficacy data on traditional medicine are also far from sufficient to meet the criteria needed to support its use worldwide [ 14 ]. Therefore, assessing and documenting the medicinal plants along with their useful medicinal parts, use, and ecology in Ethiopia, as well as revising the quality control for herbal materials and medicine, are very crucial for giving priority to their conservation and sustainable utilization.
The materials for this review were published documents. However, regarding the screening of medicinal plants, some medicinal plants not yet identified or available in more than one article being revised during this revision time, and published before with their uses, were not listed and included for this review analysis so as to increase the quality of the present review, provide the current information to the readers, and restrict the revised papers.
Based on this, of the total 32 revised documents, 15 articles, which are assessing the different medicinal plants with their uses and parts, were revised for documenting the medicinal plants for this review. Additionally, the habitats ecology of each medicinal plant were assessed from the Flora Volumes of Ethiopia and Eritrea and [ 15 ], besides the articles revised for listing the medicinal plants for this review.
The data were analyzed and described quantitatively using frequency, percentage, tables, and figures via applying Microsoft Excel Spreadsheet and SPSS with version 20, as well as qualitatively using content analysis, narrating via drawing sub-contents.
Traditional healers in Ethiopia utilize the herbal resources available in nature for various disease treatments. As reported before, approximately species of the medicinal plants grown in Ethiopia are used for treating about medical conditions [ 16 ]. As reported by many authors [ 6 , 7 , 12 , 13 , 17 , 18 , 19 , 20 , 21 , 22 , 23 , 24 , 25 , 26 , 27 ], there are different types of medicinal plant species with their parts, habitats, and disease types being treated and described here in Table 1.
Accordingly, as depicted in Table 1 , there were 80 medicinal plant species with 63 genera, used by the local communities for various human treatments. Among other revised, the common medicinal plants used for treating and curing various diseases are Aloe species, Eucalyptus globulus , Hagenia abyssinica , Cupressus macrocarpa , Buddleja polystachya , Acmella caulirhiza , Acacia species, Citrus species, Clematis species, Coffee Arabica , Croton macrostachyus , Euphorbia species, Ficus sycomorus , and Moringa stenopetala Table 1.
Based on the review, all plant growth forms were not equally used as remedies, because of the difference in distribution among the growth forms. Accordingly, the life forms of medicinal plants reviewed constituted 18 trees Of all life forms, herbs were, thus, the major medicinal plants used by the community for human treatment followed by shrubs and trees.
The review indicated that the plant parts used for medication preparation by the traditional healers are variables. Healers mostly used fresh specimens from commonly available plants [ 25 ] to prepare remedies for their patients; this might be mostly due to the effectiveness of fresh medicinal plant parts in treatment since the contents are not lost before use compared to the dried ones [ 12 ].
As also referred from many authors, the traditional healers have harvested leaves, roots, barks, seeds, fruits, stems, flowers, barks, seeds, or latex of medicinal plants Figure 2 to prepare their traditional medicines for their patient treatments.
As depicted in Figure 2 , most remedies were prepared from the leaf The main reason that many traditional medicine practitioners used the leaf parts compared to others for remedial preparation is due to their accessibility and for preventing them from extinction [ 25 ].
In fact, harvesting the root parts of the medicinal plant for preparation of traditional medicines has negative consequences on the existence of the plants themselves in the future. That is why most of the medicinal plants are currently at risk, declining highly due to them using their root parts besides other human pressures. Using these medicinal plants revised in Table 1 , the local communities could be able to treat about 69 disease types.
This also points out that one medicinal plant species can be used for treating more than one disease types. Disease type categories and their rank based on their frequency being treated by different medicinal plant species as described in Table 1.
Because of this, medicinal plants are very vital in providing traditional medicines, prepared by local healers, and thereby used for treating and curing different types of diseases that affected the local communities, where they occurred. Even, following the traditional uses and effectiveness of the medicinal plants [ 23 ], the traditional healers are also popular by the local societies, providing cultural values.
The study of [ 23 ] also confirmed that the traditional health practitioners are with a good knowledge of medicinal plants used to treat different diseases of their locals. In addition to these contributions pertinent to traditional medications and cultural values, the individual medicinal plants could provide regulating, provisioning, and supporting services.
For instance, they could provide regulating services via regulating soil erosion, climate change, disease, pollution, and pollination; they also provide provisioning services such as fuel wood, timber for house construction, food fruits, honey , and fodder and shelter for wild animals [ 11 ]. Hence, almost all of the medicinal plants are multipurpose species, providing more than one benefits.
As referred from the revised documents for this review, the habitat preference of medicinal plants varied from place to place Table 1. Generally, the majority of medicinal plants were found in wild compared to those plants found in cultivated and home gardens together.
Many of the authors of the reviewed articles e. This could be due to their shallow roots, which cannot bring water from the deep parts of their habitats. This implies that the availability and accessibility of most medicinal plants in Ethiopia are also very difficult [ 25 ]. Therefore, the effects of human on the natural habitat of medicinal plants are the problems for the conservation of medicinal plants and associated knowledge of traditional healers [ 12 ].
With the present ecological and socioeconomic changes, medicinal plants together with the associated ethnobotanical knowledge in Ethiopia are under serious threat and may be lost at alarming rate. Under such circumstances, the use of plants for medicinal purposes will also decline, and consequently the once effective traditional healthcare system will also be lost [ 19 ].
Hence, documenting medicinal plants with their uses and ecology as well as the knowledge of traditional practitioners is so vital. Moreover, it is very essential to give conservation priority for those medicinal plants through protecting them where they are found, propagating them in cultivated areas and home gardens, and creating awareness to the locals.
Hence, following community and research-based approach is advised to save medicinal plants from their loss and extinction. Plant materials are used throughout developed and developing countries as home remedies, as over-the-counter drug products, and as raw materials for the pharmaceutical industry, which represent a substantial proportion of the global drug market [ 29 ].
Thus, the traditional herbal medicines and their preparations have been widely used for thousands of years in many countries.
Therefore, it is so essential to overview here some modern control histological techniques or tests, suitable standards, and practical experiences used for assessing the quality of medicinal materials and their products. Quality control of herbal medicine using histological techniques and pharmaceutical practices is also very vital for avoiding the risks happened on patients and the beliefs in services provided by traditional healers.
According to [ 30 ], quality control is a phrase that refers to processes involved in maintaining the quality or validity of the manufactured products.
However, the quality control of herbal medicine is beyond this, meaning it is the management of medicinal plants and their products during cultivation, identification process of the plant species with their parts and localities their being free from polluted environment causing diseases , and medicine preparation including its components, medication processes, storage standards, and dosage; all should be taken into account.
This means, without proper all-round quality control, there is no assurance that the contents of the herbs contained in the package are the same as what are stated outside the package [ 30 ]. Climatic factors prevailing temperature, rainfall, humidity, altitude of the growing region, light , nutritional factors nutrients, pH, cation exchange capacity , harvesting factors age, season, collection time, plant organ , and post-harvesting factors storage hygiene, drying process are the major factors affecting the contents and composition of medicinal plant raw materials and their products [ 29 , 30 ].
For these, some of the most important laboratory test methods histological techniques , common sense, and good pharmaceutical practices are used [ 29 ]. Techniques such as thin-layer chromatography and microscopic and electrophoretic techniques are widely used to evaluate the quality of herbal drugs [ 14 , 29 , 31 ] and the content and quality of meats [ 32 ] as well. These techniques and good pharmaceutical practices are also used to support the development of national standards based on local market conditions, with due regard to existing national legislation and national and regional norms [ 29 ].
Therefore, improved and currently available pharmaceutical analytical methods led to improvements in harvesting schedules, cultivation techniques, storage, product purity, and activity and stability of active compounds [ 30 ].
Among others, thin-layer chromatography, macroscopic and microscopic examinations, gas chromatography and volatile components, and electrophoretic techniques [ 14 , 29 ] are the most important quality control methods for medicinal plant materials and their products, described briefly here below.
Herbal materials are categorized based on sensory, macroscopic, and microscopic characteristics, which are the first steps toward establishing the identity and the degree of purity of such materials, and should be carried out before any further tests undertaken, according to [ 29 ]. Therefore, to establish identity, purity, and quality, visual inspection macroscopic examination provides the simplest and quickest means.
Herbal materials should be entirely free from visible signs of contamination such as insects, molds fungi , and other animal contamination, including animal excreta; any soil, stones, sand, dust, and other foreign inorganic matter must also be removed before herbal materials are cut or ground for testing [ 29 ]. Moreover, plant parts used for medication with abnormal odor, discoloration, slime, or signs of deterioration should be detected to exclude them from being used for medication products.
Moreover, during storage, products should be kept in a clean and hygienic place for avoiding contamination occurring; special care should also be taken to avoid formation of molds, since they may produce aflatoxins [ 29 ]. For determination of foreign matter and storage conditions, macroscopic examination can properly be employed for determining the presence of foreign matter in whole or cut plant materials. For these, common sense and good pharmaceutical practices are used.
Such common senses and good pharmaceutical practices can, even, be used after laboratory tests since the test procedures cannot take account of all possible impurities in deciding whether an unusual substance not detectable by the prescribed tests can be tolerated [ 29 ]. For instance, if a sample is found to be significantly different from the specifications in terms of color, consistency, odor, or taste, it is considered as not fulfilling the requirements. However, such examination may need further microscopic examination for either rejecting or accepting their requirements.
This technique is simple, can be employed for multiple sample analysis, and so has manyfold possibilities of detection in analyzing herbal medicines [ 14 ]. The report of [ 29 ] also confirmed that TLC is used for evaluating herbal materials and their preparations; particularly, it is valuable for the qualitative determination of small amounts of impurities. Many pharmacologically active components in herbal medicines are volatile chemical compounds; thereby, the analysis of volatile compounds by gas chromatography is very important in the analysis of herbal medicines [ 14 ].
It is a good tool for producing the chemical fingerprints of the herbal medicines and has similar technical characteristics of liquid chromatography [ 14 ]. Electrophoretic method, especially capillary electrophoresis CE , used in the analysis of herbal medicines, is a versatile and powerful separation tool with a high-separation efficiency and selectivity when analyzing mixtures of low-molecular-mass components [ 14 ].
There are various forms of medicinal plants including trees, shrubs, climbers, and herbs; of those herbal medicinal plants are dominantly used for different human and animal treatments in Ethiopia. These plants are collected mainly from riverbanks, cultivated areas, bushlands, forest, woodlands, and grasslands, among others. They are used for treatments of stomachaches, dysentery, diarrhea, asthma, cancer, evil eyes, earaches, sores of throat and gum, cough, and so on.
For such treatments, these medicinal plants have specific parts used for treatment; most of them are leaves and roots. Hence, traditional medicine plays a significant role in the healthcare of the majority of the people in developing countries, including Ethiopia, and medicinal plants provide valuable contribution to this practice. However, the vegetative resources that are unique to the country, particularly used for medication, are dwindling due to continuous exploitation and pressure on the limited resources.
The Characteristics and Roles of Medicinal Plants: Some Important Medicinal Plants in Nigeria
This plant requires a lot of water to grow. You can cook and eat the rootstocks and leaf sheaths of many species. They have been used as a remedy against numerous diseases, in sweet-smelling oils burnt in temples and in adding flavors to beverages and food. The center or "heart" or the plant is edible year-round, cooked or raw. In this holistic guide, naturopath J. Pursell provides an accessible and comprehensive introduction to medicinal plants, explaining how they work and how to use them safely.
Alamut region was divided into different villages with the aid of maps. We recorded traditional knowledge and use of medicinal plants from.
Medicinal plants , also called medicinal herbs , have been discovered and used in traditional medicine practices since prehistoric times. Plants synthesise hundreds of chemical compounds for functions including defence against insects , fungi , diseases , and herbivorous mammals. Numerous phytochemicals with potential or established biological activity have been identified. However, since a single plant contains widely diverse phytochemicals, the effects of using a whole plant as medicine are uncertain.
The ethnobotany of the medicinal plants of Alamut region is important in understanding the cultures and traditions of Alamut people. This study documents 16 medicinal plant species, most commonly used by the indigenous people of Alamut region Ghazvin Province , northwest, Iran. The botanical name, family name, vernacular name, part used, and the application of the plants have been provided in this paper. Alamut region was divided into different villages with the aid of maps. We recorded traditional knowledge and use of medicinal plants from herbal practitioners and village seniors in Alamut.
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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
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Там подают отличный карпаччо. - Хейл улыбнулся. - Что скажешь.
Ради всего святого, зачем вы это сделали. Чтобы скрыть свою маленькую тайну. Стратмор сохранял спокойствие.
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