Analysis Of Lycopene, Vitamin A And Beta Carotene In Red Cactus (Opuntia Ficus-Indica) Fruit In Nyeri County, Kenya

ABSTRACT

Vitamin A deficiency (VAD) has been a serious public health problem in the developing countries especially in Africa, mostly in pre-school age children and in pregnant and lactating mothers. It contributes to 7 million pregnant women and approximately 127 million of preschool-aged children and about 1-2 million deaths every year. It has been reported that about half a million new cases of blindness emerge yearly. This has for a long time been solved in addition to modern medicines by using locally available dark green leafy vegetables (DGLVs), which are believed to also contain high levels of beta-carotene(BC). Unfortunately, they are seasonal. BC is an important source of vitamin A (retinol) and its deficiency causes morbidity and mortality in children and adults. A diet rich in lycopene is related to a decreased risk of cancer of digestive track, prostate and pancreas. Vitamin A, beta-carotene and lycopene have been found in tomatoes and carrots which require a lot of water for their growth. Red cactus (Opuntia ficus indica) fruit grows wildly along the road and in the forest in the dry areas and it is consumed by herders. This fruit has not yet entered the market, yet it could contain substantial amounts of phytochemicals (antioxidants) such as lycopene, vitamin A and beta-carotene. It grows throughout the year in arid and a semi-arid area (ASAL) hence it can supplement DGLVs, tomatoes and carrots. The objective of this study was to determine the levels of beta-carotene, lycopene and vitamin A in Red cactus at unripe, ripe and overripe stages using highperformance liquid chromatography (HPLC). The area of study was Chaka, Thegu area of Nyeri County. The unripe (the breaker stage), the ripe (completely red) and overripe (the ripe kept for 5 days to overripe) red cactus fruits were picked with the help of a taxonomist who helped in identifying the fruit and its botanical name. The phytochemicals were extracted from the fruits and analyzed using HPLC and the data was analyzed using ANOVA. The mean of beta-carotene levels in unripe red cactus was 0.04 ± 0.002 mg/100 g and increased to 0.07 ± 0.001mg/100g at the ripe stage and 0.09 ± 0.003 mg/100 g when overripe. The mean lycopene levels in red cactus was 3.26 ± 0.12 mg/100 g when unripe and increased to 7.06 ±0.11mg/100g when ripe and finally to 13.56 ± 0.50 mg/100 g when overripe. The mean vitamin A levels in (μg/100 g) in red cactus was 1.27 ± 0.05 μg/100 g when unripe and increased to 2.14 ± 0.03 μg/100 g when ripe and then decreased to 1.47 ± 0.06 μg/100 g when overripe. The results from this analysis showed that the amounts of beta-carotene, lycopene and vitamin A increased significantly (P

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APA

WARUGURU, M (2021). Analysis Of Lycopene, Vitamin A And Beta Carotene In Red Cactus (Opuntia Ficus-Indica) Fruit In Nyeri County, Kenya. Afribary. Retrieved from https://afribary.com/works/analysis-of-lycopene-vitamin-a-and-beta-carotene-in-red-cactus-opuntia-ficus-indica-fruit-in-nyeri-county-kenya

MLA 8th

WARUGURU, MURAGE "Analysis Of Lycopene, Vitamin A And Beta Carotene In Red Cactus (Opuntia Ficus-Indica) Fruit In Nyeri County, Kenya" Afribary. Afribary, 31 May. 2021, https://afribary.com/works/analysis-of-lycopene-vitamin-a-and-beta-carotene-in-red-cactus-opuntia-ficus-indica-fruit-in-nyeri-county-kenya. Accessed 18 May. 2024.

MLA7

WARUGURU, MURAGE . "Analysis Of Lycopene, Vitamin A And Beta Carotene In Red Cactus (Opuntia Ficus-Indica) Fruit In Nyeri County, Kenya". Afribary, Afribary, 31 May. 2021. Web. 18 May. 2024. < https://afribary.com/works/analysis-of-lycopene-vitamin-a-and-beta-carotene-in-red-cactus-opuntia-ficus-indica-fruit-in-nyeri-county-kenya >.

Chicago

WARUGURU, MURAGE . "Analysis Of Lycopene, Vitamin A And Beta Carotene In Red Cactus (Opuntia Ficus-Indica) Fruit In Nyeri County, Kenya" Afribary (2021). Accessed May 18, 2024. https://afribary.com/works/analysis-of-lycopene-vitamin-a-and-beta-carotene-in-red-cactus-opuntia-ficus-indica-fruit-in-nyeri-county-kenya