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      Latin American food sources of carotenoids.

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      Archivos latinoamericanos de nutricion

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          Abstract

          Latin America has a wide variety of carotenogenic foods, notable for the diversity and high levels of carotenoids. A part of this natural wealth has been analyzed. Carrot, red palm oil and some cultivars of squash and pumpkin are sources of both beta-carotene and alpha-carotene. beta-carotene is the principal carotenoid of the palm fruits burití, tucumã and bocaiuva, other fruits such as loquat, marolo and West Indian cherry, and sweet potato. Buriti also has high amounts of alpha-carotene and gamma-carotene. beta-Cryptoxanthin is the major carotenoid in caja, nectarine, orange-fleshed papaya, orange, peach, tangerine and the tree tomato. Lycopene predominates in tomato, red-fleshed papaya, guava, pitanga and watermelon. Pitanga also has substantial amounts of beta-cryptoxanthin, gamma-carotene and rubixanthin. Zeaxanthin, principal carotenoid of corn, is also predominant only in piquí. delta-Carotene is the main carotenoid of the peach palm and zeta-carotene of passion fruit. Lutein and beta-carotene, in high concentrations, are encountered in the numerous leafy vegetables of the region, as well as in other green vegetables and in some varieties of squash and pumpkin. Violaxanthin is the principal carotenoid of mango and mamey and is also found in appreciable amounts in green vegetables. Quantitative, in some cases also qualitative, differences exist among cultivars of the same food. Generally, carotenoids are in greater concentrations in the peel than in the pulp, increase considerably during ripening and are in higher levels in foods produced in hot places. Other Latin America indigenous carotenogenic foods must be investigated before they are supplanted by introduced crops, which are often poorer sources of carotenoids.

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          Author and article information

          Journal
          Arch Latinoam Nutr
          Archivos latinoamericanos de nutricion
          0004-0622
          0004-0622
          Sep 1999
          : 49
          : 3 Suppl 1
          Affiliations
          [1 ] Departamento de Ciência de Alimentos, Faculdade de Engenharia de Alimentos, Universidade Estadual de Campinas, SP, Brasil.
          Article
          10971848
          dbb2dc87-2f75-4949-aeef-88bc929c84fb
          History

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