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, 104 (1-2), 32-46

Medicinal Efficacy of Plants Utilized as Temple Food in Traditional Korean Buddhism

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Medicinal Efficacy of Plants Utilized as Temple Food in Traditional Korean Buddhism

Hyun Kim et al. J Ethnopharmacol.

Abstract

We investigated the medicinal efficacies of plants used as food in 27 Korean Buddhist temples from 1997 to 2002. We studied 161 species of plants belonging to 135 genera in 65 families. Twenty-one plant parts were utilized as food in 42 different preparations. Approximately 82% of the plants studied had medicinal effects, with a wide range of efficacies (126 types). Of the medicinal plants, 52% were used for digestive problems, circulatory illnesses, and respiratory diseases. These results demonstrate that a high proportion of the food consumed in Korean temples is medicinal, and is used for a wide variety of diseases.

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