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Original Articles Open Access
The nutritional potential of five wild edible fruits of the plant e.g. Debregeasia longifolia, Helicia erratica, Ilex venulosa, Rhus semialata and Spondias axillaris, collected from Meghalaya state in India were evaluated by determining proximate and phytochemical composition. These plants are used by the local people of Meghalaya state in India as their food. The present study revealed that for different plant species, the crude fat content ranged between 1.07±0.05 -7.39±0.02 % . The crude protein content was determined high in the fruits of Debregeasia longifolia (11.99±0.04%) and Rhus semialata (7.86±0.03%) while the available carbohydrate content was highest in the fruits of Helicia erratica (88.96±0.07%). The energy content ranged from 342.15±0.13-419.09±0.06 kcal/100g in the various wild edible fruits. Among the various macronutrients estimated in the plant samples of different wild edible plants potassium was present in the highest quantity (2.98±0.21- 20.46±0.11 mg /g) followed by calcium (2.06±0.15-19.49±0.18 mg/g) and sodium (0.17±0.009-0.81±0.02 mg /g). Micronutrients, such as iron, zinc, copper, manganese and magnesium were analyzed in the different plant specimens. The result indicates that nutritional values and mineral contents of these fruits under investigation were richer than that of the commercial fruits and could be used for nutritional purpose. The present study also gives an account of ethnobotanical importance of the wild fruits under investigation.
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Author(s): Tapan Seal and Kausik Chaudhuri
Wild edible fruits , Meghalaya, nutritional composition, mineral contents, Ethnobotanical