NUTRITIONAL VALUE AND POTENTIAL OF MALAYSIAN UNDERUTILISED FRUITS AND TRADITIONAL VEGETABLES
Consumption of fruits and vegetables can play important roles in the prevention of chronic diseases such as cancer, cardiovascular disease and diabetes. Based on epidemiological studies, eating five portions of fruits or vegetables daily can reduce the risk of these diseases. This also applies to Malaysian fruits and vegetables including underutilised plant species. Based on ethnobotanical studies, many of the underutilised fruits and traditional vegetable species are the source of food and medicine for some communities in Malaysia. The species have great potential, however, they are under exploited and not fully utilised. Research and development (R&D) in Malaysian Agricultural Research and Development Institute (MARDI), especially on the bioprospection of underutilised fruits, indicated several potential species, such as ceri Terengganu (Lepisanthes fruiticosa), dabai (Canarium odontophyllum), kebayau (Dacryodes rostrata), sentul (Sandoricum macropodum) and tengkawang (Garcinia bancana). Traditional vegetables conserved in several MARDI germplasms such as gajus (Anacardium occidentale), beluntas (Pluchea indica), salam (Eugenia polyanthia) and mata ayam (Ardisia crispa) were identified to be the potential species for health benefits. In identifying the potential, several parameters were studied i.e., nutritional values (vitamins), phenolic compounds, antioxidant activity and mineral content. The paper reports on the nutritional quality and potential of Malaysian underutilised fruits and traditional vegetables that can generate additional income to the farmers, provide micro- and macro-nutrients for healthy consumption and for future commercial plantation to produce agrobiodiversity products such as juice, snacks or supplements (medicine).
Mohd Shukri, M.A., Mirfat, A.H.S., Erny Sabrina, M.N., Razali, M. and Salma, I. (2013). NUTRITIONAL VALUE AND POTENTIAL OF MALAYSIAN UNDERUTILISED FRUITS AND TRADITIONAL VEGETABLES. Acta Hortic. 979, 173-185
antioxidant, phytochemicals, total phenolic, vitamin C