Herbs and spices are used in all cultures as natural foodstuffs and for medicinal purposes. Siphonochilus aethiopicus, Monodora myristica and Crateva adansonii are some of the spices which are not commonly used. They improve the taste of food, and through their anti-oxidant, anti-microbial and anti-fungal properties, they could act as food preservatives. There is an accumulation of evidence for the usage of these spices medicinally as anti-inflammatory, anti-plasmodial, anti-sickling, anti-oxidant and chemopreventive agents. There have also been investigations to identify the active constituents of these spices and to verify their pharmacological actions. This article aims at reviewing the available data on these investigations and the basis for usage in several diseases and conditions.
Part of the book: Aromatic and Medicinal Plants