Availability of calcium in some of the leafy vegetables
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Healthy young rats, 28 days old, were placed on six diets in one of which all the calcium was supplied entirely by skimmed milk. In the other diets half of the skimmed milk was replaced by enough ground dried leafy vegetables to provide the same amount of calcium as in the milk diet. At 60 days of age the animals were killed and their bodies analysed for calcium. Comparison of the availability of calcium in these vegetables with that of milk was made by calculating for each an utilization factor which is the ratio of calcium retention to intake. The values for the six diets were: 0·85 for milk diet, 0·74 for diet 1, 0·78 for diet 2, 0·79 for diet 3, 0·54 for diet 4, and 0.69 for diet 5 respectively.
All the five leafy vegetables,viz., Avati Keerai (Sesbania grandiflora), Mola Keerai (Amaranthus gangeticus), Chiru Keerai (Amaranthus spinosus), Curry leaves (Murraya Kænigii), Murunga Keerai (Moringa oleifera) form good sources of calcium from the point of nutrition, especially Avati Keerai, Mola Keerai and Chiru Keerai, as the calcium in these are used as well as that in milk.
KeywordsLeafy Vegetable Skim Milk Powder Utilization Factor Body Calcium Moringa Oleifera
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