Ethnopharmacological relevance: Many wild and cultivated plants are rich in mineral elements and bioactive compounds and are consumed for health purposes. Studies have demonstrated the curative properties of many of these food plants. In this paper, we discuss the properties of several plants with potential health benefits that have previously received little attention. Aim of the study: This review provides an overview and critical discussion of food plants perceived by informants (emic view) as healthy or used as 'food medicine' in Italy. Pharmacological activity of these plants is explored, based upon published scientific research (etic view). Preparation methods, taste perception, toxicity and various potentialities of some food plants are also discussed. Materials and methods: The present review includes literature available from 1877 to 2012. The information was collected from books, scientific papers, and abstracts that reported any plants used as food medicine in Italy. The perceived health properties were analyzed in the framework of recent international phytochemical and phytopharmacological literature. Results: A total of 67 edible wild plants and 18 cultivated vegetables, distributed into 20 families, were reported by informants (in literature). Several plants were highly cited (e.g., Taraxacum officinale Webb., Crepis vesicaria L., Allium cepa L., Allium sativum L.). The most frequent health properties attributed to edible plants by the informants were: laxative (22 species), diuretic (15), digestive (11), galactagogue (8), antitussive (cough) (8), hypotensive (7), tonic (7), sedative (7), hypoglycemic (6). Conclusions: Some edible plants are promising for their potential health properties, such as Crepis vesicaria L., Sanguisorba minor Scop. and Sonchus oleraceus L. Several wild species were perceived by informants to maintain health but have never been studied from a phytochemical or pharmacological point of view: e.g., Asparagus albus L., Crepis leontodontoides All., Hyoseris radiata L. subsp. radiata, Phyteuma spicatum L. © 2013 Elsevier Ireland Ltd.

Guarrera, P.M., Savo, V. (2013). Perceived health properties of wild and cultivated food plants in local and popular traditions of Italy: A review. JOURNAL OF ETHNOPHARMACOLOGY, 146(3), 659-680 [10.1016/j.jep.2013.01.036].

Perceived health properties of wild and cultivated food plants in local and popular traditions of Italy: A review

Guarrera, P. M.
;
Savo, V.
2013-01-01

Abstract

Ethnopharmacological relevance: Many wild and cultivated plants are rich in mineral elements and bioactive compounds and are consumed for health purposes. Studies have demonstrated the curative properties of many of these food plants. In this paper, we discuss the properties of several plants with potential health benefits that have previously received little attention. Aim of the study: This review provides an overview and critical discussion of food plants perceived by informants (emic view) as healthy or used as 'food medicine' in Italy. Pharmacological activity of these plants is explored, based upon published scientific research (etic view). Preparation methods, taste perception, toxicity and various potentialities of some food plants are also discussed. Materials and methods: The present review includes literature available from 1877 to 2012. The information was collected from books, scientific papers, and abstracts that reported any plants used as food medicine in Italy. The perceived health properties were analyzed in the framework of recent international phytochemical and phytopharmacological literature. Results: A total of 67 edible wild plants and 18 cultivated vegetables, distributed into 20 families, were reported by informants (in literature). Several plants were highly cited (e.g., Taraxacum officinale Webb., Crepis vesicaria L., Allium cepa L., Allium sativum L.). The most frequent health properties attributed to edible plants by the informants were: laxative (22 species), diuretic (15), digestive (11), galactagogue (8), antitussive (cough) (8), hypotensive (7), tonic (7), sedative (7), hypoglycemic (6). Conclusions: Some edible plants are promising for their potential health properties, such as Crepis vesicaria L., Sanguisorba minor Scop. and Sonchus oleraceus L. Several wild species were perceived by informants to maintain health but have never been studied from a phytochemical or pharmacological point of view: e.g., Asparagus albus L., Crepis leontodontoides All., Hyoseris radiata L. subsp. radiata, Phyteuma spicatum L. © 2013 Elsevier Ireland Ltd.
2013
Guarrera, P.M., Savo, V. (2013). Perceived health properties of wild and cultivated food plants in local and popular traditions of Italy: A review. JOURNAL OF ETHNOPHARMACOLOGY, 146(3), 659-680 [10.1016/j.jep.2013.01.036].
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11590/347279
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