Possible Enhancement of Nutrients and Antioxidant Capacity of Two Tropical Fruits by UV Radiation Treatment

C.O. Olaiya, K.O. Karigidi, A.B. Ogunleye, Rukayat O. Kareem


Ultraviolet (UV)-C radiation can elicit favourable reactions in biological systems especially in fruits and vegetables. This study was conducted to assess the effect of UV-C post-harvest treatment on the nutritional and antioxidant contents of tomato and cucumber. The samples were irradiated with UV-C, and then subjected to nutritional and antioxidant analysis to determine the proximate composition, mineral micronutrients, ascorbic acid, total flavonoid and total phenolics using standard methods. The result showed that post harvest treatment with UV-C radiation has varying effects on the nutritional contents and antioxidant activity of tomato and cucumber. Total flavonoid, total phenolics and crude carbohydrate content were significantly increased (p<0.05) while there was a reduction in the values of ascorbic acid and all mineral micronutrients except Iron. There was no significant difference in crude protein and moisture content.  This study provides evidence that the novel technology of post-harvest treatment with UV radiation can enhance some health – promoting compounds of Tomato and Cucumber for the benefit of consumers.

Keywords: Ultraviolet radiation, Tomato, Cucumber, antioxidant, nutrient

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ISSN (Paper)2224-7181 ISSN (Online)2225-062X

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