Medicinal plants used for the management of diabetes mellitus in Bukomero Sub-County, Kiboga District, Central Uganda
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Diabetes mellitus (DM) is a major worldwide serious disease in all parts of the world. DM is a metabolic disorder characterized by the presence of hyperglycemia due to deficiency of the insulin secretion leading to high blood glucose level in people suffering from diabetes or due to defective insulin action or both. The research documented medicinal plants used to manage diabetes mellitus by community of Bukomero sub county, in Kiboga district, Central Uganda in January, 2018. The study employed an ethnobotanical approach and data was collected from 90 respondents using structured questionnaires administered by the researcher. Fifty seven medicinal plant species belonging to 31 families were recorded as being used by people in the treatment of diabetes mellitus. Fabaceae was represented by 7 species, Asteraceae (5 species), Solanaceae and Apocynaceae (4 species). Catharanthus roseus scored 10% relative frequency of citation (RCF). Leaves were commonly used by 47.6%. Decoction with 34.8% was the main mode of preparation, while the principal route of administration was oral. The research indentified that 40.3% of the plants used to treat diabetes mellitus were obtained from the wild habitants such as bushes and forests, 45.6% cultivated in gardens or homesteads and 14% were both wild and cultivated. All the participants had used herbal medicines before but not necessarily for the management of diabetes. Ethnobotanical knowledge was mainly held by the elderly people. Women were better represented since they are caretakers of families for instance nursing, feeding and grooming of children and every activity they do at home involves use of plants at a given point making them even being knowledgeable of their use in traditional medicine. However, further research is required to establish the clinical efficacy of medicinal plants for this condition they are claimed to manage or treat.