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Chemical characteristics and bioactive compounds of cooked pequi fruits (Caryocar brasiliense Camb.) from the Brazilian Savannah

  • Leandro de Morais Cardoso, Bárbara De Lazzari Reis, Fabiana Rossi Hamacek and Helena Maria Pinheiro Sant’ana

Abstract

Introduction. The Brazilian Savannah presents a wide vegetable diversity that produces fruit that have unique characteristics and should be better characterized and exploited. The agricultural-economic exploration of the fruits from the Savannah contributes to income generation and may play an important role in improving human nutrition. The aim of our research was to evaluate the physical characteristics (diameter, height and mass), chemical composition (moisture, ash, proteins, lipids, dietary fiber, titratable acidity, soluble solids and pH), occurrence and content of vitamin C (ascorbic acid and dehydroascorbic acid), carotenoids (α-carotene, β-carotene, β-cryptoxanthin and lycopene), vitamin E (α-, β-, γ- and δ-tocopherols and tocotrienols) and folates (tetrahydrofolate, 5-methyltetrahydrofolate and 5-formyltetrahydrofolate) in pequi from the Savannah of Minas Gerais, Brazil. Materials and methods. Analyses of carotenoids and vitamin C were carried out by HPLC-DAD, and vitamin E and folates by HPLC with fluorescence detection. Results. The pulp of cooked pequi presented high contents of dietary fiber (9.9 g·100 g–1), lipids (33 g·100 g–1), carotenoids (8.11 mg·100 g–1), vitamin C (14.33 mg·100 g–1), vitamin A (514.38 RAE·100 g–1) and total energy (317.19 kcal·100 g–1). Contents of folates and vitamin E were 5.1 μg·100 g–1 and 110.52 μg·100 g–1, respectively. Conclusion. The pulp of cooked pequi presents a high energy value, as well as elevated contents of dietary fiber and lipids. It is a good source of vitamin C and an excellent source of vitamin A. The nutritional value and the wide availability of pequi make it an important tool for the reduction of food and nutritional insecurity.

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Keywords

Chemical characteristics and bioactive compounds of cooked pequi fruits (Caryocar brasiliense Camb.) from the Brazilian Savannah

  • Leandro de Morais Cardoso, Bárbara De Lazzari Reis, Fabiana Rossi Hamacek and Helena Maria Pinheiro Sant’ana

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