Plants used for medicines by the indigenous Malay of Pahang, Malaysia
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The importance of herbs and medicinal plants in traditional healthcare practices among the indigenous Malay, and the clues that ethnobotanical information may provide to future areas of research in biodiversity utilization is well recognized in Malaysia. Keeping this in view the present study was initiated. The study aimed to look into the diversity of plant resources that are used by the local Malay in the state of Pahang for curing various ailments. Questionnaire surveys, participatory observations and respondent-guided visits to several forest, forest reserves and villages were made to illicit information on the uses of various plants. Eleven Malay traditional medicine practitioners participated as respondents in the study. It was found that 112 plant species are used by the local Malay in Pahang for curing illness such as headache, body ache, constipation, indigestion, cold, fever, diarrhoea, dysentery, wounds, skin diseases, urinary problems, bone fractures and several others. In most of the cases, the root part (or locally referred to as “akar”) of the plants are used. The plant species are presented together with scientif ic names and its medicinal use.
Ethnobotany, traditional medicine, ethnic Malay, herbs, medicinal plant.