A.S. Abitogun
Department of Science Laboratory Technology, Rufus Giwa Polytechnic, Owo
E- mail:
F.B. Borokini
Ondo Sate Ministry of Education, Akure, Nigeria.
A.O. Ashogbon
Department of Chemistry, Adekunle Ajasin University, Akungba-Akoko, Nigeria.


The Vitex glandifolia used for this study was obtained in a farm near Owo, Ondo State, Nigeria. The chemical compositions of the ripe and unripe of the fruit were assessed with a view to evaluate their levels of nutrients. The proximate compositions of ripe fruit in g/100g were: moisture content, (71.20), ash content (4.08), ether extract (1.94), crude protein, (4.13), crude fibre, (3.00) and carbohydrate which was determined by difference was (15.75). The proximate compositions of unripe fruit in g/100g were: moisture content, (70.36), ash content (3.91), ether extract (1.81), crude protein, (4.42), crude fibre, (2.91) and carbohydrate was (16.59). Calcium had the highest concentrations in both samples; this was followed by Magnesium and Sodium. Other minerals detected were; potassium, Iron, Zinc, Manganese, Copper, phosphorous, and Lead. Also present were vitamin A and C.  The result of the assessment indicates that Vitex glandifolia fruits (ripe and unripe) are rich in nutrients and can serve as potential sources of food for man and livestock. However, the nutritional compositions compares favorably with most commonly edible fruits.

Keywords; Nutritional composition, protein, carbohydrate, mineral, vitamin.


 The use of wild foods as a component of local response to increasing food insecurity is widely documented. Variations in food intakes from different wild sources have direct effects on nutritional status Lan et al, (2004). Wild foods are part of rural people diets on a daily basis. Most dietary studies emphasize the value of calorific intake from staple food, however, the amount of wild foods consumed; their frequencies of consumption as well as their nutrient content have also been explored. It is this daily consumption of wild products which contributes to over all nutritional wellbeing.        Game and fish are major sources of protein and fat, while vegetables, fruits, and seeds supply minerals vitamins as well as fat Lan et al, (2004). The chemical composition of some wild food sources has also been analyzed demonstrating their nutritional significance Kilgour, (1986), Ikechukwu, et al, (2005). Many of wild vegetables or even weeds of agriculture are high in protein, calcium, iron and vitamin A. Wild plants can have higher fat, protein, mineral and vitamin contents than the cultivated species Lan et al, (2004), wild foods often provide key supplements to the main diet and are of great nutritional importance. Wild plants can serve various purposes ranging from food additives, medicines and environmental uses. The principal role of these plants is to supplement the food obtained through home gardens and other forms of agriculture. Without the understanding of the complementarities between staple food crops and wild food intake, agricultural planning will continue to be dominated by major crops to the exclusion of other often nutritionally very important wild products. In view of this, a lot of interest is currently being focused on the possibilities of exploiting the vast numbers of less familiar plant resources existing in the wild.   
Vitex glandifolia is a wild edible fruit that is almost unknown to this generation Ann et al, (1992). Black berry, Vitex glandifolia which Yoruba called Oriri, is one of the wild fruits consumed in south- western part of Nigeria. It belongs to the genus Vitex and distributed throughout the tropics and sub-tropics. It is a forest species. The fruits are circulary with enlarged calyx forming an open saucer at the base and are fairly fleshy, often turning black when fully ripe, and surrounding a hard stone containing one to four seeds. This fruits are under utilized as it is known only among local people. There are limited information on the nutritional composition and utilization of Vitex glandifolia. This study, therefore, aimed at investigating the proximate, mineral composition as well as Vitamin A and C of Vitex glandifolia.

Materials and methods
   The Vitex glandifolia fruits used for this study were obtained from bush near Owo, Ondo State,
Nigeria. The fruits were prepared by screening to remove the bad ones, washed with clean water,
deseeded and the fleshy parts were removed. This was kept in clean flask prior to analytical work.
 The proximate analysis of the samples which were, moisture content, ash content, crude fibre and
crude fat were carried out in triplicate using standard analytical methods AOAC, (1990). The nitrogen was determined by the micro kjeldah method Pearson, (1976), and the nitrogen content was converted to protein by multiplying by a factor of 6.25. Carbohydrate content was determined by difference, that is, 100 minus crude protein, crude fibre, moisture content and ash content. The minerals were determined by dry ashing the sample at 550ºC to constant weight and dissolving the ash in a volumetric flask, using distilled and deionized water with a few drops of concentrated hydrochloric acid. Sodium and potassium were determined by using a flame photometer using NaCl and KCl to prepare the standards, while others was determined using Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometer ASTM, (1985). The minerals were reported in mg/100g.  Vitamin C and A were determined according to Pearson, (1976).

Table 1: Proximate composition of ripe and unripe Vitex glandifolia.
Parameters                                                                               Compositions (g/100g)
                                                          Unripe                             Ripe
Crude protein                                    4.42±0.06                     4.13±0.10
Ash content                                       3.91±0.16                     4.08±0.10
Ether extract                                      1.81±0.16                     1.94±00.09     
Crude fibre                                          2.91±0.07                     3.00±0.20
Moisture content                                  70.36±0.30                 71.20±0.15
Carbohydrate                                        16.59±0.17                15.75±0.30
Mean ± standard deviation triplicate determinations.
Table 2: Mineral composition of ripe and unripe Vitex glandifolia.
Minerals                                                                            Composition (mg/100g)
                                                           Unripe                                            Ripe  
Sodium (Na)                                       1.49±0.20                                           1.61±0.10
Potassium (K)                                     3.11± 0.10                                          3.43± 0.30
Calcium (Ca)                                       6.63±0.20                                           6.59±0.40
 Magnesium (Mg)                                2.20±0.10                                           2.17±0.20
Iron (Fe)                                               0.54±0.21                                           0.50±0.20
Copper (Cu)                                         0.51±0.10                                            0.55±0.30
Manganese (Mn)                                  0.17±0.25                                            0.25±0.30
Lead (Pb)                                              0.09±0.32                                             0.03±0.10
Sulphur (S)                                            0.13±0.15                                            0.08±0.30
Zinc (Zn)                                                 0.41±0.30                                          0.55±0.40
Phosphorus (P)                                        0.24±0.32                                           0.04±0.10
Mean ± standard deviation of triplicate determinations


Table 3: Vitamin A, C present in ripe and unripe Vitex glandifolia
Parameters                                                                 Compositions
                                             Unripe                                        Ripe                                
Vitamin A (µg/g)                    330.30±0.20                           336.54±0.66
Vitamin C (mg/100g)              ND                                            110.00±0.01
ND means not detected

Results and discussion
Table 1 gives the result of the proximate composition of ripe and unripe Vitex glandifolia fruits. The moisture content of the ripe and unripe fruits were 71.20±0.15and 70.36±0.30g/100g respectively. The high moisture content was an indication that the fruit cannot be stored for a long period. However, these values were less than 78.24±2.54g/100g reported for avocado Pear pulp Pushkar et al, (2001). Ash content me were 4.08±0.10 and 3.91±0.16g/100g.  The percentage ash of sample gives an idea about the inorganic content of the sample from where the mineral content could be obtained. The ash contents were higher than 3.60g/100g reported for Arthocapus heterophillus seed and less than 7.86 g/100g reported for Bombax glabra seed Bello et al, (2008). Apart from this, the ash content compares with 1.63-8.53g/100g in commonly consumed fruits Oluyemi et al, (2006). The ether extract were 1.94±00.09 and 1.81±0.16 g/100g, the low level of oil content implies that the fruit could not be good source of oil, hence could not be commercially extracted and refined to edible vegetable oil. The crude protein values were 4.13±0.10 and 4.42±0.06g/100g. Proteins are essential component of the diet needed for the survival of animals and humans, their basic function is to supply adequate amount of amino acids Pugalenthi et al, (2004). The values obtained for crude protein in this study were an indication that the fruits might not be able to supply adequate amino acid needed in the body. However, the values were less than 19.0g/100g reported for Colla mellani mesocarp Bello et al, (2008). The values of  crude fibre for ripe and unripe fruit were 3.00±0.20 and 2.91±0.07g/100g. Emphasis has been placed on the important of keeping fibre intake low in nutrition of infants and pre-school children, high fibre level in weaning diet can lead to irritation of the gut mucosa, reduced digestibility, vitamin and mineral availability Eromosele and Eromosele (1993). The low fibre level implies that Vitex glandifolia could be used in weaning food. However, those fruits with high fibre are desirable in adult diet, in that, it  promote the wave-like contraction that move food through the intestine, expands the inside walls of the colon, easing the passage of waste, thus making it an effective anti-constipation Eromosele and Eromosele, (1993). The values obtained for carbohydrate, which were determined by difference, were 15.75±0.30 and 16.59±0.17g/100g.High carbohydrate content in feed is desirable; the deficiency causes depletion of the body tissue Barker, (1996). The carbohydrate content of Vitex glandifolia is low, and sample with low carbohydrate content might be ideal for diabatic and hypertensive patients requiring low sugar diet. However, it was higher than 7.88g/100g reported for Strychnos innocua juice Bello et al, (2008).
Table 2 gives the minerals composition of ripe and unripe Vitex glandifolia in mg/100g. The minerals and there values for ripe and unripe were Sodium (1.61±0.10, 1.49±0.20), Potassium (3.34±0.30, 3.11±0.10), Calcium (6.59±0.40, 6.63±0.20), Magnesium (2.17±0.20, 2.20±0.10), Iron (0.50±0.20, 0.54±0.21), Copper (0.55±0.30, 0.51±0.10), Manganese (0.25±0.30, 0.17±0.25), Lead (0.03±0.10, 0.09±0.32), Sulphur (0.08±0.30, 0.13±0.15), Zinc (0.55±0.40, 0.41±0.30), Phosphorus (0.04±0.10, 0.24±0.32). Calcium has the highest value while Phosphorus and sulphur the least abundant.  Calcium help in regulation of muscle contractions transmit nerve impulse and bone formation Schauss, (1995). The recommended dietary allowance (RDA) for Calcium is 800m/day FNB, (1974), this shows that Vitex glandifolia could be a better source of Calcium than some conventional fruits. Manganese is desirable in the body as it supports the immune system, regulates blood sugar levels and is involved in the production of energy and cell. It works with vitamin K to support blood clothing, and also helps to control the effect of stress Anhawange, (2004). The values of 0.25±0.30, 0.17±0.25g/100g implies the fruits could be good source of Mn. The high concentration of ascorbic acid in the fruits might be a strong promoter of Fe. Fe is said to be important element in the diet of pregnant women, nursing mothers and infants to prevent aneaemia Oluyemi et al, (2006). The recommended daily allowance (RDA) for men is 7mg/day and 12-16mg/day for pregnant women NHMRC, (1991). For RDA of Fe to be provided, ingestion of 3.5g and 8g of Vitex glandifolia for men and women respectively would be required. The values of Zn 0.55±0.40, 0.41±0.30g/100g implies that, it might play a major role in normal body development, since Zn is essential element in protein and nucleic acid synthesis.

Table 3 presents the compositions of   Vitamin C and A in ripe and unripe Vitex glandifolia fruits. There was trace of Vitamin C content of 110.00±0.01mg/100g obtained for ripe Vitex glandifolia fruit; however, the vitamin C content in the unripe fruit was not detected. Vitamin C is important water-soluble vitamin already implicated in most of the life processes but principally function as an antioxidant. It is present abundantly in fruits and vegetables where the common man in the developing countries receives most of their daily intake Falade, et al, (2004). The values of Vitamin A content for ripe and unripe Vitex glandifolia were 336.54 and 330.30µg/g respectively.  

The present study indicates that Vitex glandifolia fruits (ripe and unripe) are rich in nutrients and can serve as potential sources of food nutrient for man and livestock. The high level of vitamin C may enhance availability in composite meals. However, the nutritional compositions compares favorably with most commonly edible fruits such as pineapple, pawpaw, avocado pear and oranges to mention but few. 

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