Nutritional and Antinutritional Composition of Raw and Cooked Raffia Palm (Raphia farinifera) Fruits from Nupe Land, Nigeria
Background: : Raffia palm (Raphia farinifera) fruit belongs to the family of Arecaceae.
Objective: The work is aimed at evaluating the nutritional and anti-nutritional analysis of Raffia palm (Raphia farinifera) fruit from Nupe land.
Methods: The fresh fruits of Raphia farinifera were cooked for two hours before carrying out the analysis. The parameters analyzed involve proximate composition (moisture, crude fiber, protein, fat, carbohydrate, and energy contents), minerals (calcium, potassium, sodium, iron, and magnesium), and antinutritional factors (oxalate, tannin, phytate, and cyanide) using standard procedures and methods.
Results: High levels of moisture (20.90%) and carbohydrate (83.34%) were noted in boiled Raphia farinifera than in the raw samples. However, a low level of ash (2.97%), protein (1.24%), fiber (0.50%), fat (2.30%), and energy (341Kcal/100g) were observed in the boiled Raphia farinifera than in the raw one. The mineral contents in the boiled sample were reduced significantly (p<0.05) compared to the raw one. Reductions of antinutritional factors to the levels of their permission limit were noted in the cooked samples compared to the raw one.
Conclusion: Therefore, the Raphia farinifera fruit consumption after cooking could be beneficial to the health of consumers and help in combating the problem of malnutrition in Nigeria.
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