Dictionary > Medicinal plant

Medicinal plant

Any plant whose roots, leaves, seeds, bark, or plant part is used for therapeutic, tonic, purgative, or other health-promoting purposes
Humans using plants for medical or therapeutic purposes can be traced back in the earliest times believing that these plants can cure, treat, or prevent illnesses. The field of botany that studies, explains and documents the traditional use of plants in various cultures is called ethnobotany. Through research, ethnobotanists are able to find plants as potential source or basis for future medicine.
Examples of plants that are used to cure or improve problematic health conditions are as follows:

  • Lily of the Valley (Convallaria majalis) – its flowers and roots are traditionally used for managing fevers and valvular heart disease, and for improving tone of the veins. However, the plant is potentially toxic.
  • Wild Calla (Calla palustris) – dried roots are prepared as tea to treat flu, shortness of breath, and bleeding
  • Passion Flower (Passiflora incarnata) – its root is traditionally used for boils, cuts, and inflammation.
  • Horseradish (Armoracia rusticana) – its root is prepared as a tea used for coughs, bronchitis, antiseptic, and expectorant

See also:

  • plant
  • ethnobotany
  • herb
  • pharmacology
  • Reference(s):

    1Foster, S., and Duke, J. A. (2000). A Field Guide to Medicinal Plants and Herbs of Eastern and Central North America.

    You will also like...

    IQ, Creativity and Learning
    IQ, Creativity and Learning

    Human intelligence provided the means to utilize abstract ideas and implement reasoning. This tutorial takes a further l..

    Still freshwater and plants
    Still Freshwater & Plants

    Plants in lentic habitats have features not found in terrestrial plants. They acquired these features as they adapt to t..

    Human Neurology
    Human Neurology

    Human Neurology deals essentially with the nervous system of humans. It also features the various theories put forward b..

    Ecosystem Succession
    Ecosystem Succession

    If the balance of nature is left untouched, landscapes can change dramatically over time. A previous ecosystem is supers..

    Human Nervous System
    The Human Nervous System

    The nervous system is essentially a biological information highway. This tutorial gives an overview of the nervous syste..

    Biological Cell Defense
    Biological Cell Defense

    Organisms employ different strategies to boost its defenses against antigens. Humans have an immune system to combat pat..