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Assessment of the nutritional value of wild leafy vegetables consumed in the Buhera District of Zimbabwe: a preliminary study

Assessment of the nutritional value of wild leafy vegetables consumed in the Buhera District of Zimbabwe: a preliminary study

Muchuweti, M., Kasiamhuru, A., Benhura, M. A. N., Chipurura, B., Amuna, P., Zotor, F. and Parawira, W. (2009) Assessment of the nutritional value of wild leafy vegetables consumed in the Buhera District of Zimbabwe: a preliminary study. In: Acta horticulturae. International Society for Horticultural Science (ISHS), Leuven, Belgium, pp. 823-830. ISBN 978-90-66057-01-2 ISSN 0567-7572

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Abstract

Wild leafy vegetables play a vital role in the livelihoods of many communities in Africa. The focus of this study was to investigate the nutritional value of wild vegetables commonly consumed by the people of Buhera District in the Manicaland province of Zimbabwe. A variety of vegetables including Amaranthus hybridus, Cleome gynandra, Bidens pilosa, Corchorus tridens, and Adansonia digitata were collected during a survey in Buhera District. Samples were processed employing traditional methods of cooking and drying, then subjected to proximate and micronutrient analyses. The results indicate that these vegetables were particularly high in calcium, iron, and vitamin C. Compared with Brassica napus (rape), Amaranthus hybridus contained twice the amount of calcium, with other nutrients almost in the same range. Compared with Spinacia oleracea (spinach), Amaranthus hybridus contained three times more vitamin C (44 mg/100 g). Calcium levels were 530 mg/100 g. Amaranthus hybridus was also found to contain 7, 13, and 20 times more vitamin C, calcium, and iron respectively compared with Lactuca sativa (lettuce). Cleome gynandra contained 14 mg/100 g, 115 mg/100 g, 9 mg/100 g of vitamin C, calcium, and iron respectively. Bidens pilosa was found to be a valuable source of vitamin C (63 mg/100 g), iron (15 mg/100 g), and zinc (19 mg/100 g), compared with Brassica oleracea (cabbage). The leaves of Corchorus tridens were an excellent source of vitamin C (78 mg/100 g), calcium (380 mg/100 g), and iron (8 mg/100 g). The Adansonia digitata leaves were also rich in vitamin C (55 mg/100 g), iron (23 mg/ 100 g), and calcium (400 mg/100 g). Based on these nutrient contents, the above vegetables will have potential benefits as part of feeding programmes, as well as their promotion as part of composite diet for vulnerable groups.

Item Type: Conference Proceedings
Title of Proceedings: Acta horticulturae
Additional Information: [1] Poster presented at: International Symposium on Underutilized Plants for Food Security, Nutrition, Income and Sustainable Development. 3-6 March 2008. Arusha, Tanzania. [2] Published in ISHS Acta Horticulturae 806 (2009) - International Symposium on Underutilized Plants for Food Security, Nutrition, Income and Sustainable Development. Volume 2, pp. 823-830. [2] Available in print and ActaHort CD-rom format.
Uncontrolled Keywords: Amaranthus hybridus, Cleome gynandra, Bidens pilosa, Corchorus tridens, Adansonia digitata, vitamin C, rural communities
Subjects: R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine
S Agriculture > SB Plant culture
Faculty / Department / Research Group: Faculty of Engineering & Science > Department of Life & Sports Sciences
Related URLs:
Last Modified: 05 Dec 2016 14:41
Selected for GREAT 2016: None
Selected for GREAT 2017: None
Selected for GREAT 2018: None
URI: http://gala.gre.ac.uk/id/eprint/2083

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