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Journal of Medicinal Plants Studies
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ISSN Print: 2394-0530, ISSN Online: 2320-3862, NAAS Rating: 3.53

NAAS Rating: 3.53 NEW

Journal of Medicinal Plants Studies

2016, Vol. 4, Issue 2, Part C
A review on taxonomic and use diversity of the family Amaranthaceae in Ethiopia

Mersha Ashagre Eshete, Zemede Asfaw, Ensermu Kelbessa

This work reviews literature on taxonomic and use diversity of the family Amaranthaceae in Ethiopia in order to organize the available information and to identify gaps in knowledge. Flora of Ethiopia and Eritrea Volume 2 part 1 recognizes 20 genera and over 50 species in the family. A maximum of 33 species of Amaranthaceae are registered in Sidamo Region and a minimum of eight species are registered in Arsi and Welega Regions. In species wise distribution Achyranthus aspera and Cyathula cylinderica are widely distributed. Achyranthus aspera and Amaranthus caudatus are highly used as medicine and Amaranthus caudatus and Amaranthus graecizans are highly used as food in different ethnic groups in Ethiopia. Some of them are very promising food crops in arid region due to their resistance to heat, disease, and pests. These groups are neglected and underutilized species and are drought tolerant, grow fast and are easily cultivated. Since the dawn of history, amaranth has served civilizations as staple grain. Now, in its quest for health and variety, American consumers are discovering the natural nutrition, exciting textures and unique flavor of this grain so some species of the genus Amaranthus are cultivated for their grains or leaves. Amaranth has various health benefits and medicinal properties including those which are very useful in preventing a retarded growth in children, increase the flow of breast milk, valuable in preventing a premature old age, important in all bleeding tendencies, considered highly beneficial in treatment of gonorrhea and benefits patients with cardiovascular disease. Amaranthus caudatus and Amaranthus dubius can be toxic if taken as food by humans without proper precaution. Reason for exposure can be accidental contact and any dose is dangerous and effect to toxicity that may lead to other health and life risks. Amaranthus caudatus and Iresine herbstii have been developed as ornamentals and Sericocomopsis pallida, Amaranthus thunbergii, Amaranthus dubius and Achyranthus aspera are used as favorite food for livestock. Pupalia lappacea, Chionothrix latifolia, and Chionothrix tomentosa are also used as forage and for house construction.
Number of ethnic groups in Ethiopia using Amaranthaceae species as medicine
Fig.: Number of ethnic groups in Ethiopia using Amaranthaceae species as medicine
Pages : 185-194 | 1378 Views | 39 Downloads
How to cite this article:
Mersha Ashagre Eshete, Zemede Asfaw, Ensermu Kelbessa. A review on taxonomic and use diversity of the family Amaranthaceae in Ethiopia. J Med Plants Stud 2016;4(2):185-194.
Journal of Medicinal Plants Studies
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