A review on underexploited nutrient rich perennial vegetables
Vegetables are rich in essential nutrients, vitamins, amino acids and minerals. They are huge suppliers of antioxidants too. Hence, they are termed as 'protective food'. Some vegetables like asparagus, artichokes, chekurmanis, drumstick, pointed gourd and rhubarb are perennial in growth habit and have a high nutritional profile. Globe and Jerusalem artichokes have 10.5 and 17.4 g 100 g-1 carbohydrates, respectively, in their tubers. The fruit of breadfruit (15.8 g 100 g‑1), chekurmanis leaves (11.6 g 100 g‑1), and drumstick leaves (12.5 g 100 g‑1) also contain a fairly good amount of carbohydrates compared to any other annual leafy vegetable. The energy supply by chekurmnis (103 kcal 100 g‑1) and drumstick leaves (92 kcal 100 g‑1) is comparable to the energy supplies by potato (97 kcal 100 g‑1). High dietary fibre content was observed in sweet gourd (5.9 mg 100 g‑1) followed by globe artichoke (5.4 g 100 g‑1), drumstick (3.2 g 100 g‑1) and pointed gourd (3.0 g 100 g‑1). Chekurmanis followed by drumstick leaves are rich in minerals such as calcium (570 and 400 mg 100 g‑1), phosphorus (200 and 70 mg 100 g‑1) and iron (28 and 7 mg 100 g‑1), respectively. The calcium content in chekurmanis and drumstick leaves is higher than any other commonly grown leafy vegetable in India such as 330 mg 100 g‑1 in amaranthus, 380 mg 100 g‑1 in palak and 310 mg 100 g‑1 in radish leaves. Basella (12276 IU 100 g‑1), drumstick leaves (11187 IU 100 g‑1) and chekurmanis (9510 IU 100 g‑1) contain high levels of vitamin A with other annual vegetables such as amaranthus (9108 IU 100 g‑1), spinach (8100 IU 100 g‑1) and carrot (1000 IU 100 g‑1). Chekurmanis stands first in the thiamin content among all the vegetables with a value of 0.48 mg 100 g‑1 (Pandey, 2008) followed by drumstick (0.5 mg 100 g‑1), pea (0.35 mg 100 g‑1), palak (0.26 mg 100 g‑1) and lima bean (0.24 mg 100 g‑1). They can steadily supply vegetables year after year and they provide more income per unit area. Their cultivation helps in socio economic development and uplifting the rural societies. They improve soil health; prevent soil erosion and also help in carbon sequestration.
Koundinya, A.V.V., Asha Devi, R.K., Kumar, P.P. and Pandit, M.K. (2019). A review on underexploited nutrient rich perennial vegetables. Acta Hortic. 1241, 691-698
perennial vegetables, nutritional value, medicinal properties and advantages