Effect of Palm Oil Incorporation on the Vitamin A Content of Maize-Bambara Groundnut Complementary Foods
AbstractObjective: The effect of fortification of maize-bambara groundnut complementary foods with Brachystegia eurycoma or potash emulsified red palm oil on the vitamin A content was studied. Materials and Methods: Fresh red palm oil:water emulsion (1:1, v/v) was stabilized with B. eurycoma flour or ground potash (1:1, w/v), dried and used to fortify maize-bambara groundnut infant formulae (1:3, w/w) before or after 72 hour backslopping fermentation. Fermented formulae were dried at 50oC for 12hr and analyzed for vitamin A content. Results:Vitamin A in fermented maize-bambara groundnut [(MB)f] and fermented maize-bambara groundnut malt [(MBm)f] flour blends were 33.01 and 41.17ìgRE/100g respectively while in the fortified blends, vitamin A content varied from 490.07-502.92 ìgRE/100g and 511.44-538.82 ìgRE/100g in potash-emulsified samples fortified pre- and post-fermentation respectively. In B. eurycoma-emulsified samples, it was 536.27-740.12 ìgRE/100g and 634.42-868.72 ìgRE/100g respectively. The maize-bambara groundnut malt [(MBm)f] flour blends fortified post-fermentation with B. eurycoma-emulsified red palm oil had the highest vitamin A content of 868.72 ìgRE/100g. Conclusion: Maize–bambara groundnut malt fortified post-fermentation with red palm oil emulsified with B. eurycoma had the highest vitamin A content over potash-emuksified samples and samples fortified prefermentation. B. eurycoma–emulsified palm oil could therefore serve as an effective food vehicle for incorporating vitamin A into complementary foods for infants. The fortified products had low moisture contents which could enhance storage stability.
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