Polyphenols, carotenoids, and ascorbic acid in underutilized medicinal vegetables

Nuri Andarwulan a,b,*, Dewi Kurniasihb, Riza Aris Apriadyb, Hardianzah Rahmatb, Anna V. Rotoc, Bradley W. Bollingc

aSoutheast Asian Food and Agricultural Science and Technology (SEAFAST) Center, Bogor Agricultural University, Bogor, Indonesia
bDepartment of Food Science and Technology, Bogor Agricultural University, Bogor, Indonesia
cDepartment of Nutritional Sciences, University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT, USA


The polyphenols, carotenoids, ascorbic acid, and protein were determined in 24 underutilized medicinal vegetables from Indonesia. Anacardium occidentale, Sauropus androgynus (L.) Merr., and Moringa pterygosperma Gaertn. leaves were rich sources of flavonoids, with 118–144 mg/100 g fresh weight. Quercetin, kaempferol, and chlorogenic acid were the predominant polyphenols among those measured in vegetables. Polyscias pinnata leaves and Solanum torvum Swartz fruits had the most phenolic acids, with 53 and 36 mg/100 g, respectively. Moringa pterygosperma had the most carotenoids among vegetables, with 14 mg b-carotene equivalents (bCE)/100 g. Ascorbic acid content of fresh vegetables was 12.03–494.43 mg/100 g. A. occidentale, S. androgynus, Ocimum americanum L., Cosmos caudatus H.B.K., and Carica papaya L. (papaya) leaves had more than 100 mg ascorbic acid/100 g. Thus, a number of underutilized vegetables from Indonesia may be rich sources of functional components including polyphenols and ascorbic acid.

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