1st Edition

Healing Plants of Nigeria Ethnomedicine and Therapeutic Applications

By Anselm Adodo, Maurice M. Iwu Copyright 2020
    332 Pages 229 Color & 1 B/W Illustrations
    by CRC Press

    332 Pages 229 Color & 1 B/W Illustrations
    by CRC Press

    332 Pages 229 Color & 1 B/W Illustrations
    by CRC Press

    Healing Plants of Nigeria: Ethnomedicine and Therapeutic Applications offers comprehensive information on the use of herbal medicines in West Africa. Combining an evidence-based, ethnobotanical perspective with a pharmacological and pharmaceutical approach to phytomedicine, the book bridges the gap between the study of herbal plants’ pharmacological properties and active compounds for the development of clinical drugs and community-oriented approaches, emphasising local use. It demonstrates how the framework of African traditional medicine can be preserved in a contemporary clinical context.

    The book outlines the history and beliefs surrounding the traditional use of herbs by the local population alongside their application in contemporary phytotherapy in Nigeria and West Africa. It features a critical assessment of the scientific rationale behind the use of these plants in ethnomedicine and offers a composite catalogue of phytotherapeutic and wellness agents, detailing the safety profile, efficacy, and scientific integrity of plants used to treat diseases and optimise health.


    • An ethnobotanical survey containing over 200 full-colour photographs of Nigerian and West African plants.
    • A unique combination of ethnobotany and pharmacognosy, bridging the divide between pharmaceutical and community-oriented approaches to herbal medicine research.
    • Contextual discussion of the therapeutic potential of Nigerian herbal medicine.
    • Offers a template which can be used to separate the superstitious aspects of ethnomedicine from culturally inherited deposits of knowledge.

    A handbook for herbal and natural medicine practitioners, the book is aimed at African thinkers, scientists, healthcare providers and students of pharmacology and ethnomedicine.




    Part One

    1. The Practice of Medicine in Africa

    2. Medicine, Culture and Health Belief Systems

    3. Trees

    4. Shrubs

    5. Forbs

    6. Grasses

    Part Two Application of Medicinal

    Plants for Specific Diseases

    7. Medicinal Plants for Malaria and Parasitic Infections

    8. Nigerian Plants with Application in the Treatment of

    High Blood Pressure

    9. Nigerian Healing Plants Used for Metabolic Syndrome,

    Obesity, and Diabetes

    10. Phytotherapy of HIV-AIDS and Opportunistic Infections

    With Nigerian Plants

    11. Application of Nigerian Plants in Cancer Treatment

    12. Control of Oxidative Stress and Chronic Inflammation

    with Nigerian Plants

    13. Skin Care, Dental, Oral Care and Cosmeceuticals from

    Nigerian Plants

    14. Nigerian Healing Plants in Global Trade


    Anselm Adodo is a member of the Benedictine order of the Catholic Church. He was ordained a priest in 1997. He had his initial philosophical training at the studium of Philosophy in St. Benedict Monastery, Ewu, Edo State, Nigeria. Father Anselm Adodo is the founder and Director of Nigeria’s foremost herbal research Institute, the Pax Herbal Clinic and Research Laboratories, popularly called Paxherbals. He is a prominent advocate of African Herbal medicine research, indigenous knowledge systems, rural community development, health policy reform and transformation of education in Africa. Anselm holds a BA in Religious studies from University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria; and master’s degrees in Systematic Theology from Duquesne University, Pittsburgh USA; and in Medical Sociology from University of Benin, Nigeria. His doctoral degrees are in Management of Technology and Innovation from Da Vinci Institute, South Africa and in Medical Sociology from University of Benin, Nigeria. He has authored a number of books, which include: Herbs for Healing (1997), Healing Radiance of the Soul (2003), New Frontiers in African Medicine, (2005), Herbal Medicine and the revival of African Civilization (2010), Disease and Dietary patterns in Edo Central Nigeria (2013) and the best-selling Nature Power. Herbal Medicine in Tropical Africa, first published in 2000 and reprinted eight times. He is a Fellow of the Nigerian Society of Botanists and Director of Ofure (Pax) Centre for Integral Research and Development. Professor

    Maurice Iwu is Africa’s foremost pharmacologist and expert in tropical medicine. He has been awarded by the Association of Lady Pharmacists, ALPS, for his role in the promotion and development of tropical medicine in various ways such as research, training of herbal practitioners and establishment of Bio-resources Development Group that promotes the sustainable utilization of natural products. He alsoset up the annual HerbFest – a herbs and food as medicine exhibition and training conference. Professor Iwu was at various times the President of the International Society of Ethnobiology and President of the Nigerian Society of Pharmacognosy. He is a member of the American Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene as well as the International Society for Medicinal Plant Research. He was a former Executive Director, Bioresources Development and Conservation Programme and also a Senior Research Associate at the Division of Experimental Therapeutics of Walter Reed Army Institute of Research, Washington D.C.