Nutritional and phytochemical profiles of three neglected fruit seeds from Ebonyi state
Otu Okogeri, Rita Onu
The present work explores the usefulness of soarsop (SS), dabai (DB) and monkey cola (MC) seeds by assessing their nutrient and phytochemical compositions. In Ebonyi State, these fruit seeds are usually discarded as waste after consumption of the edible pulps. Findings from this study indicate that MC seed recorded the highest protein (9.06%), ash (6.18%) and carbohydrate (65.5%) contents, while the highest fat contents of 32 and 35% were recorded for SS and DB seeds respectively, suggesting that these seeds can be classified as oilseeds. In terms of phytochemicals, flavonoids ranged from 84.3-100.3 mg/100g with SS recording the highest value and MC the lowest. Significantly high level of phenolic compounds (5305 µg/g, expressed as gallic acid equivalence) was recorded for DB, indicating that this seed could serve as a good source of natural antioxidants. The corresponding values for SS an MC were 2617 and 1115 µg/g respectively. Vitamin C content ranged from 0.35-0.65 mg/100g with SS recording the highest value and MC the lowest. Similar trend was observed for vitamin E and A contents of SS, which were 219.56 and 212.83 mg/100g respectively. The corresponding values for DB and MC were in the rage of 6.51-13.96 mg/100g and 3.7-10.36 mg/100g respectively. The above findings suggest that the three neglected seeds studied have the potential to be good sources of nutrients and phytochemicals.