Vernonia amygdalina, a member of the daisy family, is a small shrub that grows in tropical Africa. V. amygdalina typically grows to a height of 2–5 m (6.6–16.4 ft). The leaves are elliptical and up to 20 cm (7.9 in) long. Its bark is rough. V. amygdalina is commonly called bitter leaf in English because of its bitter taste. African common names include grawa (Amharic), ewuro (Yoruba), etidot (Ibibio), onugbu (Igbo), ityuna (Tiv), oriwo (Edo), Awɔnwono (Akan), chusar-doki (Hausa), mululuza (Luganda), labwori (Acholi), olusia (Luo), and ndoleh (Cameroon).
The cooked leaves are a staple vegetable in soups and stews of various cultures throughout equatorial Africa.
The Tongwe use cold concoctions of this plant as a treatment for malaria, intestinal parasites, diarrhea, and stomach upset. For numerous African ethnic groups, a concoction of this plant is also a prescribed treatment for malarial fever, schistosomiasis, amoebic dysentery, and several other intestinal parasites and stomach aches.
In Nigeria, twigs and sticks from this plant are used as a chewing stick for dental hygiene and the stems are used for soap in Uganda. In Ghana, the young leaves rather than the old, has gained credence for its potent anti-diabetic and anti-inflammatory activity; and have been proven using animal models. 
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- Asante, Du-Bois; et al. (2016). "Antidiabetic Effect of Young and Old Ethanolic Leaf Extracts of Vernonia amygdalina: A Comparative Study". Journal of Diabetes Research. 8252741: 8252741. doi:10.1155/2016/8252741. PMC 4884890. PMID 27294153. Explicit use of et al. in:
- Asante, Du-Bois; et al. (2019). "Anti-inflammatory, anti-nociceptive and antipyretic activity of young and old leaves of Vernonia amygdalina". Biomedicine & Pharmacotherapy. 111: 1187–1203. doi:10.1016/j.biopha.2018.12.147. PMID 30841432. Explicit use of et al. in:
- Huffman, M.A., Seifu, M (1989). "Observations on the illness and consumption of a possibly medicinal plant Vernonia amygdalina (Del.), by a wild chimpanzee in the Mahale Mountains National Park, Tanzania". Primates. 30: 51–63. doi:10.1007/BF02381210.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)