Plants popularly used for loosing weight purposes in Porto Alegre, South Brazil.

Depto. de Botanica, Instituto de Biociencias, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul. Av. Bento Gonçalves 9500, Prédio 43433, Campus do Vale, 91501-970 Porto Alegre, RS, Brazil.
Journal of Ethnopharmacology (Impact Factor: 2.94). 02/2007; 109(1):60-71. DOI: 10.1016/j.jep.2006.07.003
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT In this study, 14 herbalists (herb sellers) were interviewed about popular use of plants with weight loss purpose in Porto Alegre, a South Brazil city. For all identified species, scientific data were reviewed aiming to establish a correlation between popular use and biological properties. Seventy-eight samples were reported as having weigh loss properties. These samples come from 23 species and Asteraceae encompasses the greatest number of representatives. The greatest number of herbalist's citations was Baccharis articulata. The majority of plants have traditional use in Brazil but none is explicitly cited for loosing weight purposes. The pharmacological data are mainly from animal and in vitro studies and do not straight related to obesity. Only Ilex paraguariensis presents clinical data of efficacy in the treatment of obesity. Seven species present pre-clinical data that indicate a potential role in the control of certain conditions which are associated with obesity, such as hyperlipidemia (Campomanesia xanthocarpa, Cuphea carthagenensis, Cynara scolymus, Hibiscus sabdariffa, Ilex paraguariensis) and high levels of blood glucose (Achyrocline satureioides, Baccharis trimera, Campomanesia xanthocarpa). In conclusion, scientific data found are insufficient to guarantee the efficacy and safety of these plants for treating obesity. However, some of them present activities which could be useful to treat certain obesity comorbidities and deserve further studies.

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    • "Studies have shown that C. xanthocarpa possesses a wide spectrum of physiological effects: the leaves of this plant are used as infusion in folk medicine to treat inflammatory diseases and hypercholesterolemia [11]. Moreover, C. xanthocarpa is empirically used for weight loss and for the control of a number of conditions associated with obesity [12]. One of the most recent studies demonstrated that the C. xanthocarpa produced an effect parallel with the mechanism of oral hypolipemiants, and that this plant showed intense presence of saponins [13], which are widely distributed in plants and have many biological activities, such as antiplatelet activity [14] [15]. "
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    • "Eugenia jambolana Lam.) is a tropical tree of the family Myrtaceae, which is popularly known as jambolan. The plant is extensively used for the treatment of different diseases, such as inflammation, constipation , obesity, urinary disorders, diabetes, and hypertension [5] [6] [7] [8] [9]. Pharmacological studies have suggested hypoglycemic and antihyperglycemic properties of this medicinal species [10] [11] [12] [13] [14] [15] [16] [17] [18] [19]. "
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    ABSTRACT: This study evaluated the in vivo potential antihypertensive effect of hydroalcoholic extract of Syzygium cumini leaves (HESC) in normotensive Wistar rats and in spontaneously hypertensive rats (SHR), as well as its in vitro effect on the vascular reactivity of resistance arteries. The hypotensive effect caused by intravenous infusion of HESC (0.01–4.0 mg/kg) in anesthetized Wistar rats was dose-dependent and was partially inhibited by pretreatment with atropine sulfate. SHR received HESC (0.5 g/kg/day), orally, for 8 weeks and mean arterial pressure, heart rate, and vascular reactivity were evaluated. Daily oral administration of HESC resulted in a time-dependent blood pressure reduction in SHR, with a maximum reduction of 62%. In the endothelium-deprived superior mesenteric arteries rings the treatment with HESC reduced by 40% the maximum effect () of contraction induced by NE. The contractile response to calcium and NE of endothelium-deprived mesenteric rings isolated from untreated SHR was reduced in a concentration-dependent manner by HESC (0.1, 0.25, and 0.5 mg/mL). This study demonstrated that Syzygium cumini reduces the blood pressure and heart rate of SHR and that this antihypertensive effect is probably due to the inhibition of arterial tone and extracellular calcium influx.
    Evidence-based Complementary and Alternative Medicine 12/2014; 2014:7. DOI:10.1155/2014/605452 · 1.88 Impact Factor
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    • "Dysentery, stomach problems, diarrhea, antimicrobial, cystitis, urethritis, and hepatic disorders Madalosso et al. (2012), Dickel et al. (2007), Corrêa (1952), D'Ávila (1910), Moraes (1881) Cecropia pachystachya Trécul Cardiotonic, antioxidant, hypoglycemic, and sedative effects Aragão et al. (2010), Consolini et al. (2006), Velázquez et al. (2003) Chrysobalanus icaco L. Chronic diarrhea, dysentery, hemorrhage, leukorrhea, diabetes, HIV l; antiangiogenic; cytotoxic for K562 cells; inhibited proliferation of MDR Lucena cells; and had genotoxic, antioxidant, and antibacterial activities Castilho and Kaplan (2011), Fernandes et al. (2003), Alves de Paulo et al. (2000), Pereira (1997), Gustafson et al. (1991), Presta and Pereira (1987), Morton (1981) Diospyros hispida D.C. Leprosy, skin eruptions, eye infections, infectious diseases, activities against Plasmodium falciparum, Cryptococcus neoformans, and Leishmania (L.) chagasi Albernaz et al. (2010), Mallavadhani et al. (1998), Watt (1956) Dipteryx alata Vog. Anti-rheumatic agent, tonic, and menstrual regulators Esteves-Pedro et al. (2012) Eugenia uniflora L. Diarrhea, hypertension, antimicrobial activity, antigiardial activity, and anti-Trypanosoma activity Victoria et al. (2012), Lopes et al. (2012), Consolini et al. (1999) Hymenaea courbaril L. Diarrhea, dysentery, intestinal colic, pulmonary weakness, and chronic cystitis, and antiviral activity Cecílio et al. (2012), Panizza (1997), Lorenzi and Matos (2002) Hymenaea stignocarpa Mart. "
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    ABSTRACT: Leishmaniasis is a major public health problem, and the alarming spread of parasite resistance has increased the importance of discovering new therapeutic products. The present study aimed to investigate the in vitro leishmanicidal activity from 16 different Brazilian medicinal plants. Stationary-phase promastigotes of Leishmania amazonensis and murine macrophages were exposed to 44 plant extracts or fractions for 48 h at 37°C, in order to evaluate their antileishmanial activity and cytotoxicity, respectively. The most potent extracts against L. amazonensis were the hexanic extract of Dipteryx alata (IC50 of 0.08 μg/mL), the hexanic extract of Syzygium cumini (IC50 of 31.64 μg/mL), the ethanolic and hexanic extracts of leaves of Hymenaea courbaril (IC50 of 44.10 μg/mL and 35.84 μg/mL, respectively), the ethanolic extract of H. stignocarpa (IC50 of 4.69 μg/mL), the ethanolic extract of Jacaranda caroba (IC50 of 13.22 μg/mL), and the ethanolic extract of J. cuspidifolia leaves (IC50 of 10.96 μg/mL). Extracts of D. alata and J. cuspidifolia presented higher selectivity index, with high leishmanicidal activity and low cytotoxicity in the mammalian cells. The capacity in treated infected macrophages using the extracts and/or fractions of D. alata and J. cuspidifolia was also analyzed, and reductions of 95.80%, 98.31%, and 97.16%, respectively, in the parasite burden, were observed. No nitric oxide (NO) production could be observed in the treated macrophages, after stimulation with the extracts and/or fractions of D. alata and J. cuspidifolia, suggesting that the biological activity could be due to mechanisms other than macrophage activation mediated by NO production. Based on phytochemistry studies, the classes of compounds that could contribute to the observed activities are also discussed. In conclusion, the data presented in this study indicated that traditional medicinal plant extracts present effective antileishmanial activity. Future studies could focus on the identification and purification of the antileishmanial compounds within these plants for analysis of their in vivo antileishmanial activity.
    Experimental Parasitology 05/2014; DOI:10.1016/j.exppara.2014.05.004 · 1.86 Impact Factor
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