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The plants were collected from the Cariri region in the southern part of Cearα state, in the northeastern region of Brazil, and all of them are used as traditional medicines and foods by the populations of this region. Our efforts are aimed toward the identification of the biological activities of these plants, which have the potential to be a readily available, low-cost alternative to the current therapeutics. Each 200-g quantity of aerial parts yielded 5-6 g of the extract [Table 1]. Therefore, these species may have great relevance in the prevention and treatment of diseases in which oxidants or free radicals are implicated.
Plant material and extract preparations Leaves of each species were collected in the county of Crato, Cearα State, Brazil. The volatile extract of peppermint leaves (Mentha arvensis L.) is used as an ingredient in various foods, as an antibacterial agent, as a modulating agent for the antibiotic activity, and as a promoter of gas secretion. Momordica charantia Linn (bitter gourds) (Cucurbitaceae) is widely cultivated for its medicinal and food uses. Antioxidant activity of five Brazilian plants used as traditional medicines and food in Brazil. Phcog Mag 2010;5-8How to cite this URL: Santos AK, Costa JG, Menezes IR, Cansano IF, Santos KK, Matias EF, Coutinho HD.
Antioxidants represent a group of substances that, when present in ideal concentrations in oxidant substances or foods, inhibit or delay the oxidative processes, being able to be divided in enzymatic, soluble, nutritional, and scavenging metals of transitions.