Background: Medicinal and aromatic plants are a considerable source of active substances which are exploited in the treatment of several diseases. This study was carried out in the Rif (North of Morocco), it aimed to identify medicinal and aromatic plant used by the local people to treat digestive system diseases, together with the associated ethnomedicinal knowledge.
Methods: The ethnomedical information collected was from 732 traditional healers using semi-structured interviews, free listing and focus group. Family use value (FUV), use value (UV), plant part value (PPV), fidelity level (FL) and Informant Agreement Ratio (IAR) were employed in data analysis. Medicinal and aromatic plant were collected, identified and kept at the natural resources and biodiversity laboratory, Ibn Tofail University, Kenitra.
Results: During the present study 87 medicinal plant species belonging to 43 families has been documented. The most frequent ailments reported were gastric ulcers (IAR = 0.97). The majority of the remedies were prepared from decoction (42.12%). Leaves were the most frequently used plant part (PPV = 0.344) and Thymus saturejoides Coss. (UV = 0.240) was the specie most commonly prescribed by local herbalists.
Conclusions: The results of this study showed that people living in the Rif of Morocco are still dependent on medicinal and aromatic plants. The documented plants can serve as a basis for further studies on the regions medicinal plants knowledge and for future phytochemical and pharmacological studies.
Keywords: Moroccan Rif; Medicinal and aromatic plants; Digestive system diseases, Ethnomedicinal