Planta Med 2008; 74 - PH9
DOI: 10.1055/s-0028-1084854

Saponin content of sprouts from Chenopodium nuttalliae Saff., Cucurbita pepo L., Brassica napus L. and Amaranthus leucocarpus S. Watson syn. hypochondriacus L

M Barrón-Yánez 1, C Villanueva-Verduzco 1, R García-Mateos 1, 2, T Colinas-León 1
  • 1Instituto de Horticultura. Universidad Autónoma Chapingo. Carretera Méx –Texcoco km 38.5 Chapingo, Edo. Méx. 56230. Mexico
  • 2Preparatoria Agrícola. Universidad Autónoma Chapíngo. Caretera Méx –Texcoco km 38.5 Chapingo, Edo. Méx. 56230. México

Several studies confirm the advantages of sprout consumption [1], however, there is no information on the saponin content in seeds and sprouts, despite traditional consumption by the Mexican population. The purpose of this study was to determine the effect of sprouting on saponin content of 'huauzontle' (Chenopodium nuttalliae Saff.), squash (Cucurbita pepo L.), canola (Brassica napus L.) and amaranth (Amaranthus leucocarpus S. Watson syn. hypochondriacus L.) sprouts. The determination of total content of saponins was carried out by the hemolysis method. Canola and squash seeds presented 35.77 and 0.0mg of saponins while 429.81 and 155.40mg/100g dry sample, respectively were found in the sprouts. As for amaranth, 42.84mg was found in seed and 491.45mg/100g dry matter in the sprout. Presence of saponins in 'huauzontle' (Chenopodium nuttalliae Saff.) has not been documented in the literature so far. This analysis reported 5 280.57 and 2 873.23mg/100g dry matter of seed and sprout, respectively. The notably high saponin content in seed and sprout of 'huauzontle' which was below the anti nutritious or toxic level. It can be concluded from the present investigation that in canola, squash and amaranth sprouts the total saponin content increased drastically with sprouting, except for'huauzontle' which had a decrease. More studies are required in order to define its possible role in human diet.

References: 1. Zhu, D. et al. (2005) Plant Foods Hum. Nutr. 60:147–151.