*Obiloma A.A.1, Madu W.C.2, Osuji G.O.3, Ogbonna P.C.1, Maduforo A.N.4, and Ogbu C.C.1
1Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, Imo State Polytechnics, Umuagwo, Imo State, Nigeria.
2 Science Laboratory Technology, Imo State Polytechnics, Umuagwo, Imo State, Nigeria.
3Cooperative Agricultural Research Center, Prairie View A&M University, Prairie View, Texas, USA.
4Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, University of Nigeria Nsukka, Enugu State, Nigeria.
*Corresponding author: [email protected]
Background: Xylopia aethiopica is a plant of enormous importance in African cuisines and traditional medicine. It is nutritionally rich and spicy. Almost all its parts are medicinally useful.
Objective: The aim of this study was to evaluate the proximate, vitamins, minerals and phytochemicals content of Xylopia aethiopica.
Methods: Xylopia aethiopica was obtained from Green Healthcare Botanical Gardens Owerri, Imo State, Nigeria. The fruit of the plant was processed into powder. Proximate composition was determined using standard methods, minerals content was determined with atomic absorption spectrophotometry, vitamins composition was determined by Spectrophotometric method, phytochemicals content was determined using colorimetric method, and terpenes content was by headspace solid-phase microextraction combined with gas chromatography-mass spectrometry with flame-ionization detection (GC-FID).
Results: Carbohydrate was the highest at 62.18% and protein the least at 3.99%. Vitamins A, B1 and C were present. The minerals detected were Mg, K, Na, Ca, Mn, Fe, Cu and Zn. The phytochemicals present were tannins, alkaloids, flavonoids, saponins, phytates, oxalates and phenols. The plant contained several terpene compounds which were at a high yield (3.953%).
Conclusion: This spice can contribute important nutrients to diets. Its diverse phytochemicals might be responsible for its therapeutic functions.