Chemical composition of Moringa oleifera Lam. and Moringa stenopetala Bac. leaves from Kenya
Nathaniel, Ebenezer Udofia
Onyancha, Jared Misonge
Moriasi, Gervason Apiri
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The species of Moringa are native to India and Africa. However, they are cultivated in Tropical and sub-tropical countries mainly for nutrition and health products. In Kenya, most research has been done on M. oleifera and little on M. stenopetala. The paucity of consistent information of comprehensive chemical composition of the two species is generally observed. The purpose of this study was to find out the phytochemical and nutritive elements in M. oleifera and M. stenopetala collected from Kilifi and Isiolo counties in Kenya respectively. Standard chemical evaluation methods were used to establish qualitative and quantitative chemical composition of the two species in this study. Qualitative screening revealed alkaloids, cardiac glycosides, flavonoids, phenolics, phytosterols, saponins, tannins, coumarins, terpenoids, carbohydrates, proteins, lipids and vitamins. Proximate chemical composition revealed significant difference in composition of carbohydrates, flavonoids, phenols, alkaloids, saponins ash and crude fibre between M. oleifera and M. stenopetala leaf powder at p ≤ 0.05. However, there were no remarkable differences in the composition of crude lipids, crude proteins and moisture content in the leaf powders of M. oleifera and M. stenopetala. The study revealed essential and non-essential amino acids and no significant differences in composition at p ≤ 0.05 between the leaf powders of M. oleifera and M. stenopetala. Remarkable differences in composition of Thiamine (Vitamin B1) between M. oleifera and M. stenopetala were also noted (p < 0.05). However, there were no difference in composition vitamins (B6, B9, A and C) between the leaf powder of M. oleifera and M. stenopetala at (p < 0.05). Finally, the composition differences of calcium and potassium were significant between M. oleifera and M. stenopetala leaf powders at (p < 0.05), while there were no outstanding differences in the composition of copper, manganese, iron, zinc, magnesium and potassium between M. oleifera and M. stenopetala leaf powders.
International Journal of Plant Research