Traditional African medicine studied to be a powerful, natural anti-inflammatory agent

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(Natural News) Many herbal plants are used in traditional medicine for inflammatory-related diseases. In Africa, particularly in Burkina Faso, they use Senegal saba (Saba senegalensis) to treat illnesses associated with inflammation. Researchers from Africa have looked at the properties of this plant and found that the leafy stems of Senegal saba actually possess anti-inflammatory properties. They also support the traditional use of Senegal saba in treating diseases associated with inflammation.

In the study, which was published in the journal Phytotherapie, the researchers aimed to look at the pharmacological action of the aqueous extract of its leafy stems on swelling and pain and to assess its antioxidant properties.

The researchers then found that Senegal saba extract reduced edema as early as an hour after the injection of carrageenan. The extract reached its maximum inhibiting potential at the fifth hour after the injection of the carrageenan.

As part of their study, the researchers also evaluated the analgesic effect of the aqueous extract of Senegal saba at doses of 100, 200, 300 milligrams per kilogram (mg/kg). They found that the aqueous extract significantly reduced abdominal writhing in mice. The analgesic effect of the aqueous extract at a dose of 200 mg/kg is comparable to that of 150 mg/kg acetaminophen.

When they looked at the antioxidant activity of Senegal saba extract, they found that it inhibited lipid peroxidation and lipoxygenase. Additionally, Senegal saba extract was also found to contain tannins, flavonoids, saponins, coumarins, anthocyanosides, triterpenes, and sterols.


With these findings, the researchers concluded that Senegal saba has anti-inflammatory properties and can be used against inflammatory diseases.

Other natural anti-inflammatory herbs

There are many other natural anti-inflammatory plants like Senegal saba you may not know. Here are some of them:

  • Boswellia: Boswellia, also referred to as Indian frankincense or Salai, is used in traditional medicine for arthritis, respiratory problems, and digestive symptoms. Scientific evidence supports these uses as Boswellia has active anti-inflammatory compounds called boswellic acids. These anti-inflammatory compounds have been reported to inhibit the formation of enzymes that can result in inflammatory conditions, such as bronchial asthma, rheumatoid arthritis, Crohn’s disease, and ulcerative colitis. (Related: Boswellia extract exhibits profound healing and anti-inflammatory properties.)
  • Feverfew: This plant is related to chrysanthemum. It produces daisy-like flowers with white petals and yellow centers. It is an anti-inflammatory herb that can help lower fever as well as relieve headaches and migraines.
  • Guggul: Widely used in Ayurveda for detoxifying, this herb has anti-inflammatory and cholesterol-lowering effects similar to NSAIDs like ibuprofen. It also has pain-relieving effects which are helpful against fibromyalgia and rheumatism.
  • Saw palmetto: Saw palmetto is a small palm tree native to the southeastern United States. It has promising anti-inflammatory activity against the enlargement of the prostate gland in men.
  • Slippery Elm: Slippery elm tree has diverse uses. The bark of this tree can be used as a remedy for a variety of conditions, such as arthritis, cough, gastritis, irritable bowel syndrome, and other inflammatory conditions. It is also widely used as an ingredient in lozenges and herbal teas, and can be found in powder form or in capsules.

Read more news stories and studies on more natural medicines with anti-inflammatory properties by reading

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