Medicinal Plants Philippines

Topics: Orders of magnitude, Herbalism, Essential oil Pages: 53 (16498 words) Published: August 28, 2013

10 Best Filipino Medicinal Plants Revisited

Next 10 Best Philippine Medicinal Plants

Fruits That Heal

Vegetables That Heal

Flavors and Spices That Heal

Insectidinal Plants

50 Priority Medicinal Plants

Jaime Z. Galvez Tan M.D., M.P.H.

1.1. 10 Best Filipino Medicinal Plants Revisited

It was in 1993 when the Department of Health (DOH), then under Secretary (now Senator) Juan M. Flavier launched the 10 most useful medicinal plants. It is time to revisit these 10 herbal medicines and find out what has happened since then. Also this could be the best time to prepare and launch the “Next 10 Best Medicinal Plants” by the Department of Health and now, more rightfully, by the Philippine Institute for Traditional and Alternative Health Care (PITAHC). The 10 best medicinal plants are: lagundi (Vitex negundo L.), yerba buena (Mentha cordifolia Opix ex Fresen), sambong (Blumea balsamifera L.), tsaang gubat (Carmina retusa, Masam.), niyog-niyogan (Quisqualis indica L.), bayabas (Psidium guajava L.), akapulko (Cassia alata L.), ulasimang bato (Peperomia pellucida), bawang (Allium sativum) and ampalaya (Momordica charantia). These 10 were the most researched medicinal plants in the Philippines done by the National Integrated Research Program on Medicinal Plants (NIRPROMP), and mainly funded by the Philippine Council for Health Research and Development (PCHRD) of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) since the mid 70’s. Their safety and efficacy have been proven in the laboratory as well as in human clinical trials. They also respond to the most common ailments of Filipinos. Their propagation and cultivation have been well studied by the University of the Philippines at Los Banos, Department of Horticulture. The Department of Education has been in the forefront of encouraging herbal gardens to be established in every school as well as in the homes and communities of their students. Before, the Bureau of Plant Industries (BPI) of the Department of Agriculture (DA) produced the seedlings of these ten medicinal plants. However, of late they have not been able to sustain such efforts nationwide. Of these 10, only seven have been transformed into commercially available preparations (Vitex, Blumea, Cassia, Carmina, Allium, Mentha and Momordica). Pascual Laboratories, through its subsidiary Altermed, have been the pioneer in producing the commercial preparations, Ascof, the brand name of Vitex; Re-lief for Blumea and Amargozine for Momordica. Soon they will be launching the Cassia alata ointment and the Mentha capsule as analgesic. Momordica is also produced by HerbCare, Ampalaya Plus and ABS Herbals while Vitex, Blumea and Carmina are produced by the PITAHC. Allium sativum or garlic has a number of commercial preparations, although most of them are imported from other countries.

1. Lagundi (Vitex negundo L.)

It is also known as tugas, dangla, dabatan or the 5 leaved chaste tree. This medicinal shrub, which usually grows to a height of 5 meters, is mainly used for asthma, cough and fever. The leaves, whether fresh or dried, are used either as a decoction or tea. It is available commercially in tablet form as Ascof. A syrup preparation will be introduced within the year.

2. Yerba Buena (Mentha cordifolia Opiz ex Fresen)

It is also known as hibas, ablebana, mint or peppermint. It is an crawling herb that is also used as a spice and as a side dish in Southeast Asia. Its main medicinal use is as an analgesic for headache and body pains. It can be eaten raw or prepared as a...
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