Main Article Content
Purpose: To determine the metallic content of different parts of Gloriosa superba collected from two different locations in Pakistan, and also to assess their nutritious values and toxic levels.
Methods: The plant material and soil were collected from two different locations - polluted and unpolluted. Wet digestion method was used for the preparation of samples (whole plant and soil) followed by analysis using flame atomic absorption spectrophotometer (for micronutrients) and flame photometry (for macronutrients).
Results: Of the detected micronutrients, high concentrations of Zn, Fe and Mn were noted for samples collected from both areas. These values were within permissible limits. Samples collected from the polluted area contained Cu (7.5 – 13.0 ppm), Cr (1.4 − 1.9 ppm) and Ni (0.3 − 2.0 ppm), all of which exceeded acceptable limits; the same nutrients were mostly within acceptable limits for samples collected from the unpolluted area. Significant presence of macronutrients - Ca, Na and K - were observed in samples obtained from both areas.
Conclusion: Proper validation of medicinal plants used for therapeutic purposes should be mandatory on safety grounds to protect consumers from contaminants.
Keywords: Gloriosa superba, Micronutrients, Macronutrients, Toxicity, Metal ions, Medicinal plants