Henry-Unaeze, H.N.1* and Ngwu, E.K.2
1Department of Human Nutrition and Dietetics, College of Applied Food Sciences and Tourism, Michael Okpara University of Agriculture Umudike, Abia State, Nigeria.
2Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, University of Nigeria Nsukka, Nigeria
*Corresponding author’s email address: [email protected]
Background: Diabetes mellitus is one of the diet-related non-communicable diseases that can be efficiently managed through diet therapy. The recent upsurge in the prevalence of diabetes has increased the number of patients facing the health challenge with limited choice of healthy foods, and the need to develop more indigenous foods to manage the disease condition.
Objective: This experimental study evaluated the chemical composition of flours and blends made from African yam bean (AYB) and corn seeds designed to supply one-third (12.7g) of the daily dietary fibre requirement of a reference man.
Methodology: Whole seeds of coffee brown AYB and white corn were respectively roasted at 1910C for 40 mins and oven-dried at 500C for 24 h. These were processed into flours and blends in the ratios of 100:0, 70:30, 50:50, 30:70, 0:100, with 0:100 traditional corn flour serving as control. All flours were formulated to supply 12.7g dietary fibre. The flours and blends were evaluated for chemical composition using standard procedure. Results were presented as means, and standard deviations. T-test statistic was used to compare the means, and significance was accepted at p < 0.05.
Result: AYB had a higher content of energy (404.79, 395.60 kcal), protein (24.10, 6.05 mg), fat (5.31, 3.80 mg), ash (3.19, 1.50 mg), crude fiber (4.86, 2.77 mg), calcium (45.11, 3.10 mg), iron (4.86, 2.77 mg), thiamin (0.94, 0.86 mg), riboflavin (0.03, 0.01 mg) and vitamin C (11.40, 6.81 mg) but lower magnesium (40.50, 42.93 mg), sodium ( 2.35, 5.44 mg), potassium (166.78, 180.43 mg), beta-carotene (648.67, 813.67 µg) and niacin (2.27, 2.51 mg) than corn respectively. AYB had more phytochemicals, anti-nutrients, amylose, amylose/amylopectin ratio, and all dietary fibre variables but lower starch and amylopectin than corn. The protein content of the blends increased (6.82 to 12.74 mg) with an increased proportion of AYB, carbohydrate increased (34.42 to 95.08 mg) with greater proportions of corn. The flour blends had more fat, ash, crude fibre, minerals, vitamins, phytochemical, anti-nutrients, and amylose/amylopectin ratio but lower starch content than the traditional corn flour.
Conclusion: AYB and corn flour blends can provide more nutrients for the development of new foods required in diabetes management.