The subject of food–medicines (foods ingested in order to obtain a therapeutic activity or to prevent diseases) is garnering increasing attention from both ethnobiologists and ethnopharmacol-ogists as diet-related chronic diseases are one of the major problems resulting in a large proportion of deaths globally, which calls for interest from the scientific community to make sensible decisions in the field of food and medicine. In this regard, the current study is an important attempt at providing baseline data for developing healthy and curative food ingredients. This study aimed at recording the culinary and medicinal uses of wild food plants (WFPs) in the remote Mastuj Valley, located at the extreme north of Chitral District, Pakistan. An ethnobotanical survey was completed via 30 in-depth semi-structured interviews with local knowledge holders to record the food and medicinal uses of WFPs in the study area. A total of 43 WFPs were recorded, most of which were used as cooked vegetables and raw snacks. Leaves were the most frequently used plant part. A remarkable proportion (81%) of use reports for the recorded wild plant taxa were quoted as food–medicines or medicinal foods, while very few were reported as either food or medicines, without any relationship between uses in these two domains. Previous ethnomedicinal studies from nearby regions have shown that most of the recorded wild plants have been used as medicines, thus supporting the findings of the current study. A literature survey revealed that many of the reported medicinal uses (33%) for the quoted WFPs were not verifiable on PubMed as they have not been studied for their respective medicinal actions. We observed that most of the plants quoted here have disappeared from the traditional food and medicinal system, which may be attributed to the invasion of the food market and the prevalence of allopathic medicine. However, knowledge of these wild plants is still alive in memory, and women are the main holders of cultural knowledge as they use it to manage the cooking and processing of WFPs. Therefore, in this context, we strongly recommend the preservation of local biocultural heritage, promoted through future development and educational programs, which could represent a timely response to the loss of cultural and traditional knowledge.

The fading wild plant food–medicines in upper chitral, nw pakistan

Aziz M. A.;Ullah Z.;Soukand R.;Pieroni A.
2021

Abstract

The subject of food–medicines (foods ingested in order to obtain a therapeutic activity or to prevent diseases) is garnering increasing attention from both ethnobiologists and ethnopharmacol-ogists as diet-related chronic diseases are one of the major problems resulting in a large proportion of deaths globally, which calls for interest from the scientific community to make sensible decisions in the field of food and medicine. In this regard, the current study is an important attempt at providing baseline data for developing healthy and curative food ingredients. This study aimed at recording the culinary and medicinal uses of wild food plants (WFPs) in the remote Mastuj Valley, located at the extreme north of Chitral District, Pakistan. An ethnobotanical survey was completed via 30 in-depth semi-structured interviews with local knowledge holders to record the food and medicinal uses of WFPs in the study area. A total of 43 WFPs were recorded, most of which were used as cooked vegetables and raw snacks. Leaves were the most frequently used plant part. A remarkable proportion (81%) of use reports for the recorded wild plant taxa were quoted as food–medicines or medicinal foods, while very few were reported as either food or medicines, without any relationship between uses in these two domains. Previous ethnomedicinal studies from nearby regions have shown that most of the recorded wild plants have been used as medicines, thus supporting the findings of the current study. A literature survey revealed that many of the reported medicinal uses (33%) for the quoted WFPs were not verifiable on PubMed as they have not been studied for their respective medicinal actions. We observed that most of the plants quoted here have disappeared from the traditional food and medicinal system, which may be attributed to the invasion of the food market and the prevalence of allopathic medicine. However, knowledge of these wild plants is still alive in memory, and women are the main holders of cultural knowledge as they use it to manage the cooking and processing of WFPs. Therefore, in this context, we strongly recommend the preservation of local biocultural heritage, promoted through future development and educational programs, which could represent a timely response to the loss of cultural and traditional knowledge.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/10278/3757820
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