Abstract

EVALUATION OF THE NUTRITIONAL POTENTIAL OFCeiba pentandra LEAVES

Author(s): ENECHI O.C1*, PETERCHIBUIKE D.1, UGWUOKECHUKWU P.C1.UDEHSYLVESTER M.C1. AND OMEH, YUSUF S.

Ceiba  pentandrais  a  tropical  tree  of  the  order Malvalesandofthe  family Malvaceaewhich  was  previously  separated  from  the  family Bombacaceae.  Its  leaf  has  been  found  to possess many medicinal and nutritional properties. Ceiba Pentandrais huge, wide and normally found in the wild forest of West Africa in the tropical forest regions. This work was carried out to investigate the potential nutritional values of Ceiba pentandra leaf with a view to evaluating the nutritional importance of the plant. This was achieved by evaluating the proximate, quantitative phytochemicals and vitamin constituents of the plant. The result of the proximate analysis revealed relatively high percentage of moisture (47.37%), protein (16.81%),carbohydrate  (25.23%),  low  percentage  of  fibre  (4.47%),  fats  (2.23%)  and  ash  (2.14%).  Resultsof  the  quantitative  phytochemical analysisrevealed  alkaloids (4.887±0.07),  terpenoids  (0.934±0.011),  flavonoids  (20.147±0.651), polyphenol (99.34±0.753) and  saponin  (3.91±0.119). Also,  the  result  of  the  vitamin  composition showedthe presence of vitamin A (2.323μg/g), vitamin C (0.6863mg/100g) and vitamin E (1.8836mg/100g). In the light of this investigation, Ceiba pentandra has been found to contain some nutrients and this supports its ethno-medicinal uses and therefore makes it a good source of nutrients and medicine that require special attention for development

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