Keywords: legumes, indigenous varieties, proximate composition, phytochemicals, Oman, nutritional quality, antioxidants, faba beans, cowpeas, chickpeas, lentils, regional variations, protein content, moisture, protein, fat, fibre, ash
Evaluation of indigenous Omani legumes for their nutritional quality, phytochemical composition and antioxidant properties
Four indigenous Omani legumes (faba bean, cowpeas, chickpeas and lentils), collected from three different regions of Oman, were evaluated for their proximate composition, phytochemical contents and antioxidant properties. The proximate composition varied significantly. Regional variability however, did not affect the proximate composition, except crude protein content of cowpea and chickpea. The average values for moisture, protein, fat, fibre and ash ranged from 8.5% to 9.6%, 22.5% to 23.9%, 1.1% to 1.8%, 4.5% to 7.6% and 3.1 to 3.5% respectively. Both variety and regional variability affected the phytochemical contents. The average total phenol contents, tannins, and flavonoids ranged from 15.1 to 131.8 mg GAE/100 g, 13.2 to 100.8 mg CAE/100 g and 1.7 to 19.9 mg CAE/100g respectively, whereas the oxalates and saponins contents ranged from 56.1 to 197.8 and 2,699.1 to 3,598.1 mg/100 g respectively. A significant correlation was observed between the total phenol contents and the reducing power of legumes.