American Journal of Food and Nutrition
ISSN (Print): 2374-1155 ISSN (Online): 2374-1163 Website: Editor-in-chief: Mihalis Panagiotidis
Open Access
Journal Browser
American Journal of Food and Nutrition. 2017, 5(2), 51-57
DOI: 10.12691/ajfn-5-2-1
Open AccessArticle

Mineral and Vitamin Composition of Some Lesser Known Leafy Vegetables Consumed in Northern Senatorial District of Cross River State, Nigeria

Agiang Margaret Akpana1, , Mgbang John Edward1, Peters Henry2 and Akuirene Joseph1

1Department of Biochemistry, College of Medical Sciences, University of Calabar, Calabar, Nigeria

2Department of Food Science and Technology, University of Calabar, Calabar, Nigeria

Pub. Date: March 09, 2017

Cite this paper:
Agiang Margaret Akpana, Mgbang John Edward, Peters Henry and Akuirene Joseph. Mineral and Vitamin Composition of Some Lesser Known Leafy Vegetables Consumed in Northern Senatorial District of Cross River State, Nigeria. American Journal of Food and Nutrition. 2017; 5(2):51-57. doi: 10.12691/ajfn-5-2-1


Seven leafy vegetables (Albizia zygia, Basella alba, Ficus glumosa, Hibiscus cannabinus, Pterocarpus santalinoides, Solanum nigrum and Vitex doniana) grown in the Northern Senatorial District of Cross River State, Nigeria, were authenticated and evaluated for their vitamin and mineral contents using standard methods of analysis. The fresh leafy vegetables were collected from local farms around Obudu, Bekwarra and Obanliku LGA of Cross River State, Nigeria. The results of mineral analysis revealed that at P<0.05, Basella alba had the highest potassium (146.03±1.14mg/100g) and phosphorus (36.83±0.09mg/100g) content, Hibiscus cannabinus had the highest content of magnesium (168.30±0.12mg/100g) while Ficus glumosa had a relatively high sodium content (16.43±0.12mg/100g). Vitex doniana had the highest content of calcium (67.47±0.12mg/100g). The heavy metals, cadmium, lead and mercury were not detected. Ficus glumosa had the highest content of Beta carotene (5.07±0.33mg/100g) and ascorbic acid (68.50±0.12mg/100g) while Vitex doniana had the highest content of vitamin E (6.23±0.06mg/100g). Solanum nigrum had the highest concentration of vitamin B2 (0.85±0.06mg/100g) and vitamin B6 (18.43±0.18mg/100g). The results suggest that the seven leafy vegetables contain appreciable amounts of minerals and vitamins, thus may be included in diets to supplement daily dietary allowances needed by the body, hence, improving nutritional status and curbing the problem of micronutrient deficiency.

mineral vitamin vegetables micronutrients micronutrient deficiency

Creative CommonsThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. To view a copy of this license, visit


[1]  Kalita, P., Tag, H., Sarma, H. N., &, & Das, A. (2014). Evaluation of nutritional potential of five unexplored wild edible food plants from eastern himalayan biodiversity hotspot region (India). International Journal of Biological, Verterinary, Agricultural and Food Engineering, 8(3), 209-212.
[2]  Misra, S., & Misra, M. K. (2014). Nutritional evaluation of some leafy vegetable used by the tribal and rural people of south Odisha, India. Journal of Natural Product & Plant Resources, 4(1), 23-28.
[3]  Igile, G. O., Iwara, I. A., Mgbeje, B. I. A., Uboh, F. E., & Ebong, P. E. (2013). Phytochemical, proximate and nutrient composition of vernonia calvaona hook (Asterecea): A green-leafy vegetable in Nigeria. Journal of Food Research, 2(6).
[4]  Yang, R. Y., Chang, L., Hsu, J., Brian, B. C., Weng., Manuel, C. P., Chadha, M. L., & V. L. (2012). Nutritional and functional properties of Moringa Leaves from Germplasm to Plant, to Food, to Health. European Journal, 1-9.
[5]  FAO (2009). Retrieved October, 2014, form
[6]  WHO. (2003). Diet, Nutrition and the prevention of chronic diseases. Report of a joint WHO/FAO consultation. WHO technical series. Geneva, Switzerland.
[7]  Nkafamiya, I. I., Osemeahon, S. A., Modibbo, U. U., & Aminu, A. (2010). Nutritional status of non-conventional leafy vegetables, Ficus asperifolia and Ficus sycomorus. African Journal of Food Science, 4(3), 104-108.
[8]  Agiang, M., Mgbang, J, Essien, N., Peters, H. (2016). Proximate and phytochemical composition of some lesser known leavy vegetables consumed in the Norrthern Senatorial District of Cross River State, Nigeria. World journal of nutrition and health, 4(1): 16-21.
[9]  A. O. A. C. (2005). Association of Official Analytical chemists offical methods of analysis. (18th ed). Maryland, USA.
[10]  James, C. S. (1995). Experimental methods in analytical chemistry of foods. New York: Chapman and Hall.
[11]  Kirk, S. & Sawyer, R. (1991). Pearson Food Composition and analysis of food (9th Ed.). London: Longman Scientific and techniques.
[12]  AOAC International, Official Methods of Analysis (2010), 15th edition, Arlington, USA.
[13]  Aslam, J., Mohajir, M. S., Khan, S. A., &Khan A. Q.(2008). HPLC analysis of water-soluble vitamins (B1, B2, B3, B5, B6) in in-vitro and ex-vitro germinated chickpea (Cicer arietinum L.). African Journal of Biotechnology, 7 (14). 2310-2314.
[14]  Ringling,C. & Rychlik. M. (2013). Analysis of seven folates in food by LC-MS/MS to improve accuracy of total folate data. European Food Research and Technology, 236, 17-28.
[15]  Marzougui, N., Guasmi, F., &Mkaddem,M. (2009). Assessment of Tunisian Trigonella foenum graecum diversity using seed vitamin B6, B1, B9 and C contents. Journal of Food, Agriculture and Environment, 7 (1), 56-61.
[16]  Kizito, M. E. & Angela, C. (2009). Nutritional Composition of Some Leafy Vegetables Consumed in Imo State, Nigeria Materials. Journal of Applied Science and Environmental Management, 13(3), 35-38.
[17]  Agbaire, P. O. (2011). Nutritional and Anti-nutritional Levels of Some Local Vegetables (Vernonia amygdalina, Manihot esculenta, Teiferia occidentalis, Talinum triangulare and Amaranthus spinosus) from Delta State, Nigeria. Journal of Applied Science and Environmental Management, 15 (4), 625-628.
[18]  Institute of Medicine, Food and Nutrition Board. (2005). Dietary reference inatkes for energy, carbohydrates, fibre, fat, fatty acids, cholesterol, protein and amino acids(macronutrients). National academic press, Washington DC.
[19]  Rehman, N. U., Hussain, J., Ali, L., Khan, A. L., Mabood, F., Gillani, S. A., & Al-harrasi, A. (2014). Nutritional assessment and mineral composition of some selected edible vegetables. European Journal of Medicinal Plants, 4(4), 444-457.
[20]  Agbaire, P. O. & Emoyan, O. O. (2012). Nutritional and anti-nutritional levels of some local vegetables from Delta State, Nigeria. African Journal of Food Science, 6 (1), 8-11.
[21]  Akubugwo, I. E. Obasi, A. N. & Ginika, S. C. (2007). Nutritional potential of the leaves and seeds of Solanum nigrum L . Var virginicum from Afikpo-Nigeria. Pakistan Journal of Nutrition, 6 (4), 323-326.
[22]  Osse, H. M. B. (1970). Introductory Foods.(3rd Ed). Collies Macmillian Ltd, London Pp 34-48.
[23]  Otitoju, G. T. O. , Nwamarah, J. U. , Otitoju, O., & Iyeghe, L. U. (2014). Nutrient composition of some lesser known green leafy vegetables in Nsukka Lga of Enugu State Department of Biochemistry, Faculty of pure and Applied Sciences, Natural Science Research Unit. Journal of Biodiversity and Environmental Sciences, 4(4), 233-239.
[24]  Dias, J. S. (2012). Nutritional Quality and Health Benefits of Vegetables: A Review. Food and Nutrition Sciences, 3(10), 1354-1374.
[25]  Abugre, C. (2011). Assessment of some traditional leafy vegetables of upper east region and influence of stage of harvest and drying method on nutrients content of spider flower (Cleome gynandra L.). Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology.
[26]  Udo, S. E., Obi-Abang, M., Okoi, A. I. & Akwaji, P. (2013). Nutrition and anti-nutrition components of two popular lesser known vegetables in farming communities of Cross River State, Nigeria. International Journal of Applied and Natural Sciences, 2 (5), 85-90.
[27]  Vunchi, M. A., Umar, A. N., King, M. A., Liman, A. A., Jeremiah, G. & Aigbe, C. O. (2011). Proximate, vitamin and mineral composition of Vitex doniana (black plum) fruit Pulp. Nigerian Journal of Basic and Applied Science, 19 (1), 97-101.
[28]  Achikanu, C. E., Ude, C. M., & Ugwuokolie, O. C. (2013). Determination of the vitamin and mineral composition of common leafy vegetables in south eastern Nigeria. International Journal of Current Microbiology and Applied Sciences, 2 (11), 347-353. (28).
[29]  Chawanje, C. M. (1998). Nutrient and antinutrient content of an underexploited Malawian water tuber Nymphaea petersiana (Nyiaka). Virginia Polytechnic, Institute and State University.
[30]  Adnan, M., Hussain, J., Shah, M. T., Shinwari, Z. K., Ullah, F., Bahader, A., Khan, N., Khan, A. L. & Watanabe, T. (2010). Proximate and nutrient composition of medicinal plants of humid and sub-humid regions in North-west Pakistan. Journal of Medicinal Plants Research, 4(4): 339-345.
[31]  FAO (2001). Human vitamin and mineral requirements. Report of a joint WHO/FAO expert consultation. Bangkok, Thailand.
[32]  FAO (2002). Diet, nutrition and the prevention of chronic diseases. Scientific background papers of the joint WHO/FAO expert consultation. Geneva, Switzerland.
[33]  Akah, N. P., & Onweluzo, J. C. (2014). Evaluation of Water-soluble Vitamins and Optimum Cooking Time of Fresh Edible Portions of Elephant Grass (Pennisetum purpureum L . Schumach) Shoot. Nigerian Food Journal, 32(2), 120-127.
[34]  Hasan, N., Akhtaruzzaman, M., & Sultan, Z. (2013). Estimation of Vitamins B-Complex (B 2 , B 3 , B 5 and B 6) of Some Leafy Vegetables Indigenous to Bangladesh by HPLC Method. Journal of Analytical Sciences, Methods and Instrumentation, 3, 24-29.
[35]  Blessing, A. C., Ifeanyi, U. M., & Chijioke, O. B. (2011). Nutritional Evaluation of Some Nigerian Pumpkins (Cucurbita spp.). Fruit, Vegetable and Cereal Science and Biotechnology, 5(2), 1-8.
[36]  Acikgoz, F. E. (2011). Mineral, vitamin C and crude protein contents in kale (Brassica oleraceae var. acephala) at different harvesting stages. African Journal of Biotechnology, 10(75), 17170-17174.
[37]  Severi, S., Bedogni, G., Manzieri, A. M., Poli, M. & Battistini, N. (1997). Effects of cooking and storage methods on the micronutrient content of foods. European Journal of Cancer Prevention. 6 (1):521-524.
[38]  Harris RS (1988). General discussion on the stability of nutrients. In: Karmas E. (Ed.) Nutritional Evaluation of Food Processing, New York: Van Nostr and Reinhold Co., pp 3-6.
[39]  Adams CE, Erdman JW (1988). Effects of home food preparation practices on nutrient content of foods. In: Karmas, E. & Harris R. S. (Eds), Nutritional Evaluation of Food Processing, New York: Van Nostr and Reinhold Co., pp 557-595.
[40]  Schroeder HA (1971). Losses of vitamin and trace minerals resulting from processing and preservation of foods. American Journal of Nutrition. 24:562-566.