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Nutritional Composition and Qualitative Phytochemical Analysis of Chia Seeds (Salvia hispanica L.) Grown in East Africa

[ Vol. 16 , Issue. 6 ]

Author(s):

Fabian D. Mihafu*, Beatrice N. Kiage, Judith K. Okoth and Andrew K. Nyerere   Pages 988 - 995 ( 8 )

Abstract:


Background: Chia seed (Salvia hispanica L.) is becoming one of the most popular plantbased foods that contain the greatest amount of nutrients particularly omega-3 fatty acid, α-linolenic acid. It is therefore considered a functional food with pronounced health benefits.

Objective: The purpose of this study was to determine the proximate composition, minerals, fatty acid profiles and phytochemical contents of chia seeds grown in East Africa (Kenya and Uganda).

Methods: Official methods of analysis, 2005 were adopted, minerals determined by Atomic absorption spectrophotometer, phytochemicals were determined by standard methods and fatty acid profiles were analyzed by Gas chromatography.

Results: Proximate composition indicated high contents of protein, fat and fiber. The fatty acid profiles revealed great amounts of α-linolenic acid (45.29-56.99%) followed by linoleic acid (15.9- 20.28%) and oleic acid (6.88-11.58%). However, the difference in the content of α-linolenic acid between samples was not significant (p = 0.7391). Mineral determination (mg/100g) showed high contents of potassium (492.96-862.98), phosphorous (486.45-569.45), calcium (297.47-429.09) and magnesium (192.22-202.97) while considerable amount was observed for iron, zinc, manganese, and copper. There was a significant difference (p = 0.0001) in mineral content between black chia Molo and white chia Bukembo with the exception of phosphorus.

Conclusion: Both black and white chia seeds grown in East Africa, observed to have high amounts of α-linolenic acid, proteins, fats, fiber, and minerals. These findings support the evidence that chia is rich in nutrients that are beneficial to human health. Therefore, we suggest its incorporation in diets as a healthy food ingredient.

Keywords:

Fatty acids, functional food, minerals, phytochemicals, proximate composition, vitamins.

Affiliation:

Department of Human Nutrition Sciences, School of Food and Nutrition Sciences, Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology, Nairobi, Department of Human Nutrition Sciences, School of Food and Nutrition Sciences, Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology, Nairobi, Department of Human Nutrition Sciences, School of Food and Nutrition Sciences, Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology, Nairobi, Department of Medical Microbiology, College of Health Sciences, Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology, Nairobi

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