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For thousands of years, nature has been a source of therapeutic agents, and an impressive amount of new medicines have been isolated, mostly based on their use in herbal medicine, from natural sources. In the literature with ethnomedicinal arguments among various tribal groups of Tamil Nadu, more than hundred publications are available mainly focusing on plant species used by the tribal people of Tamil Nadu for their primary health care needs.

Nowadays, farmers in Tamil Nadu are also involved in cultivating medicinal plants for their commercial significance, such as Glorisoa superba, Coleus amboinicus, Senna angustifolia Andrographis paniculata, Aloe vera, etc. This analysis summarises the traditional uses in Tamil Nadu , India, of widely used medicinal plants among the tribal groups. Extensive literature reviews were performed to record ethnobotany and associated articles and other publications.

The medicinal plants were widely used for their primary health care by the various ethnic people. The major asset for the ethnic people who populated the foot hills and dense forests were the Western and Eastern Ghats. 

These forests contain thousands of medicinal plants which are used for primary healthcare needs by the tribal people. Science and vernacular names of plants that they commonly use, relatives,Medicinal properties are presented along with their primary chemical constituents, part of the plant used and ailments treated. 

There is still a lot we can learn from abundantly accessible herbal research in the woods, particularly those that are less well known. It is important to encourage this form of study as a means for developed countries to recognise the possible use of their plant capital, and as a means of further supporting basic healthcare.


To discover the knowledgeable Muthuvar traditional healers in Kurangani in Theni District of Tamil Nadu, Southern India and to discover their indigenous ethnomedicinal know-how.


With the help of standardized questionnaires, 12 informants had been interviewed on the medicinal use of the nearby plants in diverse tribal villages of Theni District, Tamil Nadu during August 2008 to July 2009.


A general of 86 plant species belonging to seventy five genera and forty five families had been stated with ethnomedicinal uses. In phrases of the wide variety of medicinal plant species, Acanthaceae (6 genera and 7 species, 8% of total collected plants) and Cucurbitaceae (5 species) are dominant households. Among the distinctive plant components used for the instruction of drugs, the leaves were most often used for the treatment of illnesses.


The use of plants among the Paliyars and Muthuvars displays their hobby in ethnomedicine and similarly investigation on those species may additionally lead to the discovery of novel bioactive molecules.


Between 60%-70% of populations in developing countries living in agricultural and forest regions acquire diverse plant components and foods from the forest species consisting of roots, leaves, end result, and nuts which forms a necessary a part of their day by day diets. 

Medicinal plant life has a protracted-standing record in many indigenous communities, and continues to provide useful tools for treating various diseases.The practices of conventional remedy are primarily based on masses of years of perception and observations, which predate the development and unfold of modern-day medicinal drugs. In developing nations, there may be an increasing try to comprise traditional medicines, in particular herbal arrangements in the local health care structures and modernized humans are increasingly turning to natural medication. 

 In India, medicinal plant life are broadly utilized by all sections of the populace with an estimated 7 500 species of flora used by several ethnic groups and it is recognized that India has the second biggest tribal populace in the world after Africa. With fairly varied ethnic agencies and rich biological assets, India represents one of the amazing emporia of ethnobotanical wealth. 

Even these days, tribal communities in India nonetheless acquire and maintain locally available wild and cultivated plant species and practice herbal medication to treat a variety of illnesses and issues.

   Nearly hundred papers have been posted and several unpublished reviews are also to be had with ethnomedicinal claims amongst one of a kind tribal groups of Tamil Nadu.

A perusal of the literature famous that a few ethnomedicinal research amongst Paliyar tribals had been pronounced from the various districts of Tamil Nadu, viz., Madurai District, Tirunelveli District,Virudhunagar District and Dindigul District even though Theni District has now not yet been explored nicely in ethnobotanical point of view, besides a current have a look at by using Ignacimuthu et all.

There is no record available in the literature approximately the Mudhuvar tribals of Tamil Nadu. Therefore, this study became undertaken to check the special records on flora used by Paliyar and Muthuvan tribes and their usage primarily based on ethnobotanical knowledge.

There are various tribal communities inhabiting the villages of Theni District viz., Paliyars and Mudhuvars. The Paliyar tribals inhabit a slim strip of Western Ghats inside the hilly areas of Madurai, Dindigul, Theni, Tirunelveli and Virudhunagar Districts of Tamil Nadu and Idukki District of Kerala. 

The Muthuvan tribes are generally now not willing to expose their knowledge about the makes use of the flora. The information approximately medicinal plants is rather specialised and is constrained to three contributors inside the network who're diagnosed as ‘Vaidhyar’ (additionally referred to as medication men, informants and conventional healers).

Data collection

   The fieldwork inside the villages of Theni District happened between August 2008 and July 2009. The tribal settlements had been positioned thru subject surveys on this place. Eight tribal hamlets (seven Paliyar inhabiting villages and one Muthuvar inhabiting villages ) have been diagnosed in Theni District for the prevailing look at. 

Traditional healers with the understanding of medicinal flowers had been selected for the series of ethnomedicinal facts. Twelve informants (10 males and a pair of women) between the ages of 34 to 65 had been consulted to collect data inside and have a look at the area.   Ethnobotanical statistics had been collected in step with the method recommended by JainThe information turned into gathered through questionnaires and discussions of a number of the informants in their nearby language (Tamil). 

The questionnaire allowed responses at the plant prescribed, a part of the plant used, medicinal makes use of for every element, mode of instruction (i.E., decoction, paste, powder and juice), shape of utilization (both fresh or dried) and additional vegetation used as substances. The accumulated and preserved vegetation have been diagnosed the use of

The Flora of Presidency of Madras and The Flora of Tamil Nadu Carnatic Voucher specimens were deposited inside the herbarium of Pachaiyappa’s College (PCH), Chennai, India.


The gift looked focused especially at the plant species used by the Paliyar and Muthuvar tribals for primary healthcare desires as said with the aid of the informants/conventional healers. The suggested plants were organized in line with their medical call, voucher specimen variety, own family, vernacular names (as recorded during the field work), components used, healing uses and approach of usage of herbal preparations.

Enumeration of ethnomedicinal plant life

Abutilon indicum   (A. Indicum)(L.) Sweet,

Malvaceae, Thutthi. Decoction of dried leaves are combined with jaggery (an undefined sugar made from palm sap) and taken orally to treat piles, frame warmth and skin diseases

Achyranthes aspera Blume, Amaranthaceae,

Nayuruvi. Fresh roots are used as toothbrushes. Seeds are used as nutritive food.

Rutaceae, Vilvam. Decoction of sparkling leaves is taken orally two times a day for every week to treat cough, breast inflammation, eye issues and to preserve the frame in cool.

Aerva lanata, Amaranthaceae,

Siru-peelai. Decoction of fresh leaves is taken orally three instances a day to treat kidney stone infection until therapy.

Albizia amara, Mimosaceae,

Arappu Maram.

Fresh leaves are ground and mixed with rice-flour and carried out on hair before bath for per week to get rid of dandruff.

Amaranthus spinosus, Amaranthaceae,

Mulluthandu. Decoction of fresh leaves and stem are taken orally twice an afternoon for 3 days to treatment indigestion.

Andrographis paniculata

 Acanthaceae, Siriyanangai. Leaves are blended with the root of Aristolochia indica and ground into a paste. The paste thus received is implemented over the body to treat fever. Decoction of sparkling leaves is taken orally three times an afternoon for two days to treat toxic bites.

Anogeissus latifolia (DC.) Wallich ex Beddome,

Combretaceae, Vekkali. Root of younger plant is pound and tied to reduce wounds to heal soon.

Aponogeton natans,

Aponogetonaceae, Kotta Kilangu. Three grams of clean tuber are ground into a paste and boiled with 2 hundred mL of coconut oil and implemented on hair before bathtub for three days to remove


Argemone mexicana, Papaveraceae,

Brammathandu. Latex from the plant is poured at once in the affected places for two weeks to therapy fungal infection on head (poochi/ puzhu vettu).

Aristolochia bracteolata Lam, Aristolochiaceae,

Aadu Thinna Paalai. A pinch of leaves are floor into a paste and taken orally together with honey to treat stomach issues.


Aristolochia indica, Aristolochiaceae,

Sivan mooligai. Two grams of root bark is floor with water and the paste consequently received is taken orally in empty stomach twice a day for per week to treat skin sicknesses and poisonous bites.

Asparagus racemosus Willd, Liliaceae,

Thanner-vittan kilangu.

Fresh tuber is floor with water and brought orally with milk twice an afternoon for a week to therapy

urinary troubles.

Azadirachta indica A. Juss., Meliaceae, Vembu.

Tender leaves are taken orally for excretion of intestinal worms from the belly.

Barleria cristata, Acanthaceae, December poo

chedi. Root is floor right into a paste and brought orally; 1/2 a dose may be given to kids to treat diarrhoea.

Barleria prionitis, Acanthaceae, Kattu

kanakambaram. Decoction of leaves is inhaled three times an afternoon to get remedy from headache.

 Begonia malabarica Lam., Begoniaceae,

Pillai Valathi kilangu. Root is made into a paste and implemented over the frame to get a healthful body.

 Acanthaceae, Sathai otti poondu.

Leaves are made right into a paste and implemented over the affected places to heal wounds.

Bombox ceiba, Bombacaceae, Ilavamaram.

The extensive and thick prickles of the plant are rubbed on stone and the paste consequently acquired is applied on zits to disappear.

Caralluma attenuata Wight., Asclepiadaceae,

Kolisirumum. Fresh soft stem is taken orally three times an afternoon

for 2 days to get relief from bloodless.

Cardiospermum halicacabum (C. Halicacabum)L.,

Sapindaceae, Vadhamudakki.

Leaves are floor with hot water and taken orally twice a day for two days to treat joint pain and body pain.

Cassia auriculata, Caesalpiniaceae,

Aavarampoo. Fresh flower petals are made right into a paste and taken orally with honey as soon as a day earlier than going to mattress for a month to treat kidney problems.

Cassia obtusa Wight & Arn.,  

Caesalpiniaceae, Nilavagai. Leaves are ground into powder and taken orally with hot water thrice an afternoon for 2 days to deal with indigestion and constipation.

Cissus quadrangularis, Vitaceae, Pirandai.

Paste crafted from the tender stem is carried out over the painful locations to get comfort from joint pain.

Citrullus lanatus (Thunb.) Matsum & Nakai,  

Cucurbitaceae, Perun-kumattikai. Fresh end result are made into a paste and heated with neem oil and the paste accordingly obtained is tied over the painful places with material to deal with rheumatism.

Cleome gynandra, Cleomaceae, Thaivelai.

Fresh leaves are made right into a paste and carried out over the painful locations to treat wounds and swellings.

Clerodendrum phlomidis, Verbenaceae,

Thaluthalai. Leaves are ground right into a paste and taken orally along side honey two times a day for three days to get remedy from body tiredness and to therapy skin diseases.

Coccinia grandis, Cucurbitaceae,

Kovaithalai. Juice extracted from the leaves is taken orally as soon as an afternoon for a month to deal with piles. Fresh leaves are floor right into a paste and implemented over the body to preserve the body in cool.

Corallocarpus epigaeus (Rotter) C.B. Clarke,

Cucurbitaceae, Kollan-kovai. Juice extracted from the tuber is blended with urine (for male - girl urine and for woman - male urine) and applied over the poisonous bites.

Curculigo orchioides Gaert, Hypoxidaceae,

Nilappanai. Fresh tubers are boiled with water and the paste for this reason obtained is taken orally to get alleviation from frame tiredness and to deal with rheumatism.

Cynodon dactylon, Poaceae,

Arukampullu. Fresh plant parts are ground with warm water and made right into a paste and brought orally in an empty stomach to make sure the ordinary blood flow.

Cyperus rotundus,Cyperaceae, Koraipullu.

Fresh tubers are made into a paste and brought orally alongside with honey to deal with fever and swellings.

The natural preparations made from the traditional medicinal flora have been in general used for the treatment of stomachache, fever and bloodless (six species each), skin illnesses and wounds (5 species every), body cooling, frame energy and headache (4 species each). The observation showed that an amazing wide variety of the amassed plants were used for the remedy of multiple illnesses. 

A. Zeylanica (cold, cough, respiration problems and throat pain) and A. Marmelos (cough, breast irritation, frame cooling and eye issues) are used for the remedy of four illnesses; A. Indicum, C. Halicacabum, E. Alba and O. Tenuiflorum are used for the remedy of three illnesses; 16 vegetation used for 2 diseases and the rest of the vegetation are used to treat most effective one sickness.   In conclusion,

Using structured questionnaires, a total of 101 ethnomedicinal plant species belonging to 90 genera and 48 families were registered among 15 tribal informants between the ages of 26 and 82. The research reveals a high degree of ethnobotanical novelty, and the resurgence of interest in traditional folk medicine illustrates the use of plants among the Paliyars.

This research has recorded eighty-six species of medicinal plants used by the Paliyar and Muthuvar traditional healers to cure 50 forms of diseases. These plants are found in 45 families and 75 genera. Of the 66 plants reported by the Paliyar tribals, 20 were reported by the Muthuvan tribes, and 6 were reported by the Paliyar and Muthuvan tribes. Most of the plants recorded in this study were collected (85 percent) from natural vegetation and Some of them (15 percent) are from home gardens. 

The largest number of species (seven species) is represented by Acanthaceae, followed by Cucurbitaceae (five species), Asteraceae, Solanaceae and Verbenaceae, each consisting of four species. There were three plants in each of the seven families (Amaranthaceae, Asclepiadaceae, Combretaceae, Dioscoreaceae, Fabaceae, Lamiaceae and Malvaceae). Eight families of two species each and 25 families of one species each are described in the remainder.

Leaves (44 percent) were found to be the most commonly used plant parts in the preparation of medicinal products, followed by roots (16 percent), tubers (10 percent), stems (5 percent), fruits (5 percent), whole plant parts (5 percent), latex, nuts, root bark / stem bark (3 percent) and flowers (2 percent) among the various plant parts used for the preparation of medicinal products (Figure 2). 

The majority of ethnobotanical studies have confirmed that leaves are the major part of the plant used for disease management. There are four types of processing methods, namely: plant parts added as a paste, juice derived from the fresh parts of the plant, and plant plants used in the processing of decoctions in conjunction with water and powder produced from fresh or dry matter.

The usage of herbal treatments is essential to many of the Paliyar and Muthuvara tribals in Theni District and accurate knowledge of the vegetation and their medicinal houses are held with the aid of only a few individuals in this network. Further research on the medicinal vegetation cited on this examine might provide some potential leads to satisfy the desires of search for bioactive compounds and the invention of recent capsules to combat sicknesses.

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