Ethnomedicinal plants of folk medicinal practitioners in four villages of Natore and Rajshahi districts, Bangladesh

Mawla, Fariste; Khatoon, Safiyah; Rehana, Fatema; Jahan, Sharmin; Shelley, Md. Moshiur Rahman; Hossain, Sophia; Haq, Wahid Mozammel; Rahman, Shahnaz; Debnath, Kallol; Rahmatullah, Mohammed
October 2012
American-Eurasian Journal of Sustainable Agriculture;Oct2012, Vol. 6 Issue 4, p406
Academic Journal
An ethnomedicinal survey was carried out among folk medicinal practitioners of four villages in Natore and Rajshahi districts of Bangladesh. The four folk medicinal practitioners interviewed were observed to use a total of 89 plants in their different formulations. These plant species were distributed into 48 families. The practitioners treated a diverse variety of ailments including skin disorders, respiratory tract disorders, ear infections, gastrointestinal disorders, hypertension, sexual problems, menorrhagia, pain, eye problems, diabetes, osteoporosis, arthritis, sexually transmitted diseases, urinary problems, fever, paralysis, cuts and wounds, chicken pox, weakness, kidney problems, jaundice, broken bones, and hepatitis B. Plants were also used as moisturizer, for relaxing uterine muscle, for treatment of snake bite, and as snake repellent. By far, from the number of plants used, the major problems of the village communities surveyed appeared to be skin disorders, respiratory tract disorders, gastrointestinal disorders, sexual problems, pain, and diabetes. Seven plants were used for treatment of diabetes. Plants used for treatment of diabetes (Stevia rebaudiana, Cycas pectinata, Diospyros ebenum, Cinnamomum tamala, Asparagus racemosus, Tinospora cordifolia, and Corchorus aestuans) are particularly interesting for further pharmacological studies, for diabetes is a debilitating disease affecting millions of persons throughout the world, and cannot be cured with allopathic medicine. As such, any drugs that can be discovered from the anti-diabetic plants obtained in the present survey can possibly alleviate the sufferings of millions of diabetic patients and can be really beneficial for human beings. The plants used for treatment of osteoporosis, hepatitis B, and arthritis are also interesting for further studies. These plants can provide a cheaper alternative to the existing allopathic drugs and which may be more affordable to the rural people of Bangladesh, who lack both access to modern clinics as well as cannot afford the prices of allopathic drugs.


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