Phytochemical composition of some underutilsed green leafy vegetables in nsukka urban Lga of Enugu State

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Research Paper 01/04/2014
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Phytochemical composition of some underutilsed green leafy vegetables in nsukka urban Lga of Enugu State

G.T.O. Otitoju, J.U. Nwamarah, O. Otitoju, E.C. Odoh, L.U. Iyeghe
J. Bio. Env. Sci.4( 4), 208-217, April 2014.
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The use of underutilised vegetables by rural consumers is stemmed on thier perceived nutritional and therapeutic properties. Hence the need to add to add to the growing list of these beneficial plants in order to create more varieties in the food menu of the Nigreian populace. This study examined the quantitative and qualitative phytochemical compositions of some lesser known leafy vegetables consumed in Nsukka local government area of Enugu State Nigeria. Three kilograms each, of the fresh green leafy vegetables were handpicked to remove foreign particles. Each of the vegetables was then divided into three equal parts of one kilogram each. One part was washed, drained and shade dried at room temperature for seven days. After drying, the vegetables were pulverized into powder and labelled as shade dried. Chemical analysis of the GLVs were carried out using standard AOAC methods. The result revealed that all the phytochemicals analyzed for were present in most of the vegetables. Apart from Mucunapruriens, alkaloid was present in all the vegetables.Anthocyanin, carotenoid, flavonoids, oxalate and tannin were also present in all the vegetables. Myrianthus arboreus and vitex doniana are the only vegetables which contained all the phytochemicals. Quantitative phytochemical analysis result shows that the phytochemical contents of the vegetables were affected by processing. Alkaloid ranged from 0.04-3.47g/100g, anthocyanin ranged from 0.03-0.24 g/100g, that of carotenoid was 0.04-0.53g/100g, flavonoid ranged from 0.07-3.20g/100g, glycosides ranged from 0.04-0.52 g/100g, oxalate ranged from 0.03-1.95g/100g, saponin ranged from 0.26-4.89 g/100g and that of tannin was 0.01- 3.34 g/100g. In conclussion, Ficus capensis (Akokoro), Pterocarpus santalinoides (Nturukpa), Vitex doniana (Uchakiri),Ficusthon ningii (Ogbu), Mucuna pruriens (Agbara) and Myrianthus arboreus (Ujuju) are rich in most of the phytochemicals analysed. They may be utilized for various therapeutic purposes as claimed by the rural consumers in their raw forms and can also be used in preparation of various soups and pottages.


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