India has immeasurable varieties of tropical plants. Native Indians possess a long tradition of Kabiraji medicine utilizing such medicinal plants. The Indian Medicine Central Council Act 1970 recognizes Ayurvedic medicine. The World Health Organization also sponsors and encourages research in Ayurvedic treatments1. The use of herbal medicine can be traced back to China about 5000 years ago. Extracts of several plants have been used as therapeutic agents for many diseases by virtue of their antioxidant actions. Spices and herbs are recognized sources of natural antioxidants, many of which are phenols and aromatic amines. These can act at different
levels by decreasing local oxygen concentrations, decreasing superoxide formation, preventing chain initiation, metal-induced free radical generation, and lipid peroxidation. However, despite the large varieties of such plants
grown in India, a minimal number has been thoroughly studied for all aspects of their potential therapeutic value in medicine. A growing body of evidence suggests that at least part of the therapeutic values may be contributed by their antioxidative property. These natural antioxidants may therefore contribute to protect the human body from several diseases including gastric ulcer.
Clinical research has confirmed the efficacy of several medicinal plants for the treatment of gastric disorders, and basic scientific research has uncovered many of the mechanisms to explain their therapeutic effects.