Original Paper

Plant Foods for Human Nutrition

, Volume 66, Issue 3, pp 245-253

First online:

Antioxidant Potential and Health Relevant Functionality of Traditionally Processed Cassia hirsuta L. Seeds: An Indian Underutilized Food Legume

  • Vellingiri VadivelAffiliated withInstitute for Biological Chemistry and Nutrition, University of Hohenheim Email author 
  • , Aruna NandetyAffiliated withGreat Lakes Bioenergy Research Center, University of Wisconsin
  • , Hans Konrad BiesalskiAffiliated withInstitute for Biological Chemistry and Nutrition, University of Hohenheim

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The methanolic extract of Cassia hirsuta L. seed materials, an underutilized food legume collected from India, was analyzed for antioxidant activity and health relevant functionality. The methanolic extract of raw seeds contained a total free phenolic content of 15.82 ± 1.69 g catechin equivalent/100 g extract DM. Encouraging levels of ferric reducing/antioxidant power (FRAP, 1,446 mmol Fe[II]/mg extract), inhibition of ß-carotene degradation (48.81%) and scavenging activity against DPPH (64.40%) and superoxide (43.78%) radicals were exhibited by the raw samples. Further, 83.11% of α-amylase and 62.79% of α-glucosidase enzyme inhibition characteristics under in vitro starch digestion bioassay were also recorded. Sprouting + oil-frying caused an apparent increase on the total free phenolic content and a significant improvement in the antioxidant and free radical scavenging capacity of methanolic extract of C. hirsuta seeds, while soaking + cooking as well as open-pan roasting treatments showed diminishing effects. The analysis of the phenolic profile revealed the presence of gallic acid, p-coumaric acid and (+)-catechin in the methanolic extract of these seeds.


α-Amylase inhibition Antioxidant activity Cassia hirsuta seeds α-glucosidase inhibition Indigenous processing methods Total free phenolics