Cooking African pumpkin leaves (Momordica balsamina L.) by stir-frying improved bioactivity and bioaccessibility of metabolites—metabolomic and chemometric approaches.

Mashiane, Petunia
Manhivi, Vimbainashe E.
Shoko, Tinotenda
Slabbert, Retha M.
Sultanbawa, Yasmina
Sivakumar, Dharini
The leaves of African pumpkins (Momordica balsamina L.) are a commonly consumed traditional vegetable. They are a good source of polyphenolic antioxidants and carotenoids, which are, however, affected by cooking or digestion. We investigated the effect of household cooking methods (stir-frying or boiling) on the changes in bioactive metabolites, antioxidant capacity, release and accessibility of -carotene and also inhibition of inhibitory activity against -amylase and glucosidase enzymes during in vitro digestion of African pumpkin leaves compared to the raw leaves. Compared to boiled or raw leaves, stir-frying improved the availability of bioactive metabolites at the gastrointestinal phase. Quercetin 3- galactoside and rhamnetin 3-O-glucoside (marker compounds) discriminated the stir-fried leaves from raw leaves and boiled leaves after digestion. Stir-frying improved the release and accessibility of -carotene and enhanced the antioxidant activities compared to boiling. Dialysable fractions of stir-fried leaves exhibited the greatest inhibitory activity against - amylase and -glucosidase enzymes compared to the raw and boiled leaves, as well as acarbose. Stirfrying, therefore, is recommended for use in household cooking to benefit consumers by increasing the intake of phenolics and -carotene.
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B-carotene, Phenolic compounds, Traditional leafy vegetables, Antioxidant activity, Carbohydrate hydrolysing enzymes, Bioaccessibility
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