Proximate Composition, Mineral and Vitamin Content of Some Wild Plants Used as Spices in Cameroon


The aim of this work was to contribute to our knowledge of the proximate composition, mineral and vitamin content of 20 edible wild plants used as spices in Cameroon. The plant species were collected from 3 different markets in the West Region of Cameroon and analysed for their content of crude proteins, and lipid, ash, moisture, available sugars, total phenols, carotenoids, minerals (Ca, Zn, K, Na, Mg, Al, Mn, Cu and Se), and vitamins (A, E and C) as well as for their pH and colour. Results revealed that all the plants were low in moisture (7.7 to 10.5 g/100 g) but high in ash content (7.7 to 10.5 g/100 g). Hua gabonii (bark) (1594.5 mg/100 g) was relative source of calcium, Echinops giganteus (206.4 mg/100 g) exhibited the highest level of iron and Scorodophleus zenkeri (310.0 μg/100 g) the highest level of selenium. Generally all the plants were found to contain low levels of Zn, Cu and Mg. Wide variations were observed for the pro- teins and available sugars among the samples. The lipid content of some of the plants were surprisingly relatively high as was the case with Monodora myristica (53.4 g/100 g), Xylopia aethiopica (33.7 g/100 g), Fagara leprieuri (32.1 g/100 g), and Aframomum daniellii (23.1 g/100 g). All the plants were rich in phenols, carotenoids, vitamin E and C. They are dark in colour and in solution they tended to provoke a fair acidification.

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A. Bouba, N. Njintang, H. Foyet, J. Scher, D. Montet and C. Mbofung, "Proximate Composition, Mineral and Vitamin Content of Some Wild Plants Used as Spices in Cameroon," Food and Nutrition Sciences, Vol. 3 No. 4, 2012, pp. 423-432. doi: 10.4236/fns.2012.34061.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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