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Studies on Indian Green Leafy Vegetables for Their Antioxidant Activity


To identify the potential of green leafy vegetables (GLV) as antioxidants, methanolic extracts of Amaranthus sp., Centella asiatica, Murraya koenigii and Trigonella foenum graecum were studied for their antioxidant activity in different systems at multiple concentrations. Total antioxidant activity assessed by phosphomolybdenum method, free radical scavenging activity by 1,1-diphenly-2-picryl hydrazyl (DPPH), reducing power and ferrous ion chelating activity were determined. The GLV were analyzed for ascorbic acid, total and β-carotene and total polyphenol contents. The ascorbic acid, total carotene, β-carotene and total phenolic content (tannic acid equivalents) of the GLV ranged between 15.18–101.36, 34.78–64.51, 4.23–8.84 and 150.0–387.50 mg/100 g GLV, respectively. The extracts were found to have significantly different levels of antioxidant activities in the systems tested. The total antioxidant activity was highest in Murraya koenigii (2,691.78 μmol of ascorbic acid/g sample) and least in Centella asiatica (623.78 μmol of ascorbic acid/g sample). The extract concentration causing 50% inhibition of DPPH (IC50) was determined (M. koenigii < C.asiatica < Amaranthus sp. < T. graecum). The maximum DPPH scavenging activity and reducing power was exhibited by Murraya koenigii. Multiple regression analysis showed that the relationship of total antioxidant activity, free radical scavenging activity, and reducing power with polyphenol and total and β-carotene was highly significant.

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The financial assistance provided by Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), New Delhi is gratefully acknowledged. The first author (SG) wishes to thank CSIR for grant of Senior Research Fellowship. Special thanks are due to Dr. Jyothi Lakshmi A. for giving constructive comments while preparing the manuscript.

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Corresponding author

Correspondence to Sheetal Gupta.

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Paper awarded the Young Scientist Award in Experimental Nutrition at the Young Scientist Award Session of the 39th Annual Meet of the Nutrition Society of India, Hyderabad, India on 15–16th Dec 2007.

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Gupta, S., Prakash, J. Studies on Indian Green Leafy Vegetables for Their Antioxidant Activity. Plant Foods Hum Nutr 64, 39–45 (2009).

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  • Antioxidant activity
  • Ascorbic acid
  • β-Carotene
  • Free radical scavenging activity
  • Green leafy vegetables
  • Polyphenol
  • Reducing power