Caper Leaves and Other Herbs for Cystitis in the Rif Mountains of Morocco

Capparis spinosa L. (caper). Royalty-free image from Pxfuel.com.

This study is an ethnobotanical review of herbs traditionally used to treat Cystitis in the Rif, Northern Morocco.

Mountain ranges of North Africa. From Wikimedia Commons.

Of the 60 plant species described, Capparis spinosa L. (caper) was the most commonly used – as a decoction of the leaves – followed by Apium graveolens L. (celery) – whole plant as an infusion – and Ziziphus vulgaris Lam. (jujube) – fruit, eaten.

Rif Mountains by Hamza.hayoun. From Wikimedia Commons.

A table summarising the study’s findings can be found here: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1186/s43094-021-00226-2/tables/2.

Here is a link to the whole study: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1186/s43094-021-00226-2.

Traditional Use of Medicinal Plants in Kerman Province, Iran

Roses in a flower garden, Kerman Province, Iran. Photo from Pxfuel. Public Domain.

The authors of this study surveyed the use by herbal healers of plant species found in Kerman Province, south-east Iran. They note that traditional (folk) medicine is a major component of healthcare in south-east Iran.

Kerman Province, Iran. Image from Wikipedia. Public Domain.

The study findings suggest that plants in the Asteraceae and Apiaceae families are used for the treatment of gastrointestinal disorders, Lamiaceae plants for respiratory and gastrointestinal ailments, and Apocynaceae and Euphorbiaceae plants for dermatological problems.

Photo of Rayen Citadel, Kerman Province, Iran, by Ninara, via Flickr. Creative Commons CC BY 2.0.

A full table of the medicinal plants identified and their uses by local herbal healers can be found here.

Hosseini, S.H., Bibak, H., Ghara, A.R. et al. Ethnobotany of the medicinal plants used by the ethnic communities of Kerman province, Southeast Iran. J Ethnobiology Ethnomedicine 17, 31 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1186/s13002-021-00438-z .

Copyright © Robert Hale 2021.

The Common Nettle (Urtica dioica) in Eastern Herbalism

In a previous post I presented a graphic about the Common Nettle (Urtica dioica) in Western Herbalism. This post complements that one, and deals with the use of the herb in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and Ayurveda.

If the image is too small for you to read the words, enlarge your window by holding down ‘Control’ and scrolling up with your mouse wheel.

Copyright © Robert Hale 2021.

1. https://www.meandqi.com/herb-database/stinging-nettle-leaves
Retrieved 19/05/2021.

2. Holmes P. (1993). The Energetics of Western Herbs, Vol. 1, Revised Second Edition. Berkeley, USA: NatTrop Publishing.

3. https://www.purushaayurveda.com/articles/2016/3/24/nettles-the-ayurvedic-perspective
Retrieved 19/05/2021.

Anti-Cancer Activity of Limonene

Lemons by Dwayne Madden via Flickr, reproduced according to Creative Commons licence CC BY 2.0.

Limonene is an abundant monoterpene in essential oils of citrus fruit peels (Rutaceae).

This systemic review highlights limonene as “an abundant natural molecule with low toxicity and pleiotropic pharmacological activity in cancer cells, targeting various cell‐signaling pathways critically involved in the initiation, growth, and chemoresistance of cancer cells“. (My italics.)

Gomes de Araújo-Filho H. et al. (2021). Anticancer activity of limonene: A systematic review of target signaling pathways. Phytotherapy Research. 17th April 2021. https://doi.org/10.1002/ptr.7125 .

Copyright © Robert Hale 2021.

Database of Traditional Cannabis Uses

Photo by cannabispictures via Flickr, reproduced according to Creative Commons licence CC BY 2.0.

This article presents a database of traditional uses of cannabis:

Balant M. et al. (2021). CANNUSE, a database of traditional Cannabis uses—an opportunity for new research. Database, Volume 2021, 2021, baab024, https://doi.org/10.1093/database/baab024 .

Here is the abstract of the article:

Cannabis is one of the most versatile genera in terms of plant uses and has been exploited by humans for millennia due to its medicinal properties, strong fibres, nutritious seeds and psychoactive resin. Nowadays, Cannabis is the centre of many scientific studies, which mainly focus on its chemical composition and medicinal properties. Unfortunately, while new applications of this plant are continuously being developed, some of its traditional uses are becoming rare and even disappearing altogether. Information on traditional uses of Cannabis is vast, but it is scattered across many publication sources in different formats, so synthesis and standardization of these data are increasingly important. The CANNUSE database provides an organized information source for scientists and general public interested in different aspects of Cannabis use. It contains over 2300 entries from 649 publications related to medicinal, alimentary, fibre and other uses from different geographical areas and cultures around the world. We believe this database will serve as a starting point for new research and development strategies based on the traditional knowledge”.

Database URL: http://cannusedb.csic.es