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Product Code: 00006612

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Indigenous foods have its origin in a particular region of which it is culturally accepted. They are consumed traditionally as opposed to exotic foods which have been introduced from other regions of the world. This study identified and evaluated the proximate, vitamin, mineral, phytochemical, anti-nutrients, and amino acid profile of the indigenous foods in Imo state. Samples of indigenous foods; Owerri   soup, Oha-Okazi soup, ugba soup, Ugba and Ona and ona sauce) were dried in a cabinet dryer at 70ºC to a constant weight and pulverized to powder. The ground powder was evaluated for proximate, vitamin, mineral, phytochemical, anti-nutrient, and amino acid using standard methods. Data obtained was analyzed for mean and standard deviation. Findings showed that the protein content was significantly (P<0.05) higher in Ugba soup (17.64%) than in Owerri soup (10.21%).There was a significant difference (P<0.05) in the carbohydrate content of Ugba (48.20%) than in Ona (33.84%). There was no significant difference (P>0.05) in the vitamin E content of Oha-Okazi soup (2.02ug) and Ugba soup (2.03ug), and isoleucine contents in Oha-Okazi soup and ugba soup (3.47mg), and energy contents of Ugba and Ona (362.47kcal and 361.96kcal). Ugba soup had the highest crude fiber content (9.35%) and Oha-Okazi soup had the lowest crude fibre content (5.78%).The fat content was significantly (P<0.05) higher in Ugba soup (16.68%) than in Owerri soup (6.93%). These indigenous foods are rich sources of macronutrients, vitamins, minerals, phytochemicals and amino acids of biological significance. Therefore programs to encourage the consumption of these indigenous dishes at appropriate quantities should be implemented.


TITLE PAGE                                                                                    i
CERTIFICATION                                                                            ii
DEDICATION                                                                                  iii
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS                                                              iv
TABLE OF CONTENTS                                                                  v
LIST OF TABLES                                                                            viii
LIST OF FIGURES                                                                            ix
ABSTRACT                                                                                      x

INTRODUCTION                                                                              1
1.1 Statement of problem                                                                    6
1.2 Objectives of the study                                                                  7
1.3 Significance of the study                                                              8       
CHAPTER 2                                                                           
LITERATURE REVIEW                                                                  9
2.1 Concept of indigenous foods                                                                    9
2.2 Barriers to indigenous foods                                                          12
2.3 Benefits of indigenous foods                                            13
2.3.1 Palatability                                                                      14
2.3.2 Health                                                                                14
2.3.3 Food security                                                                      15
2.3.4 Enhancing dietary diversity                                                                    16
2.3.5 They are well adapted to the regions where they originate                      18

CHAPTER 3                                               
MATERIALS AND METHODS                                               
3.1 study design                                                                            18  
3.2 Area of study                                                                            18
3.3 population study                                                                        19
3.4 Sampling and sampling technique                                                                19
3.5 Preliminary activities                                                                19
3.6 Data collection                                                                          20
3.7 Sample material collection and identification                          20
3.8 Sample preparation                                                                                    21
3.8.1 Preparation of Owerri soup                                                                      21
3.8.2 Preparation of Oha-Okazi soup                                                                23
3.8.3 Preparation of Ugba soup                                                                        25
3.8.4 Preparation of Ugba                                                                                  27
3.8.5 Preparation of Ona and Ona sauce                                                            29
3.9 proximate composition                                                                                30 
3.9.1 Determination of Moisture content                                                          30
3.9.2 Determination of Ash                                                                              31
3.9.3 Determination of Fat                                                                              31
3.9.4 Determination of Crude protein                                                            32
3.9.5 Determination of Crude fibre                                                              33
3.9.6 Determination of Carbohydrate content                                              34
3.10.   Mineral Content Analysis                                                                  35
3.10.1 Determination of Phosphorus                                                          35
3.10.2 Determination of iron                                                                        36
3.10.3 Determination of Calcium and Magnesium                                      37 
3.10.4 Determination of Potassium and Sodium                                        38
3.11 Determination of anti-nutrient and phyto-chemicals                            39
 3.11.1 Determination of  Phytate                                                              39
3.11.2   Determination of Tanin                                                                  40                  
3.11.3 Determination of Saponin                                                                  41
3.11.4 Determination of Phenol                                                                42                                 
3. 11.5 Determination of Trypsin inhibitor                                                42
3.11.6 Determination of Flavonoids content                                              43
3.12 Amino acid profile                                                                              44
3.12.1 Determination of Vitamins                                                              44
3.12.2 Determination of pro-vitamin A                                                      44
3.12.3 Determination of B1 (Thiamin)                                                        45
3.12.4 Determination of B2 (Riboflavin)                                                    46 
3.12.5 Determination of Niacin                                                                  47
3.12.6 Determination of Vitamin C                                                            48
3.12.7 Determination of Vitamin E                                                            49
3.13 Determination of Energy                                                                                    51
3.14 Statistical Analysis                                                                                  51

4.1 Socio-demographic characteristics of the respondents.                                      52 
4.2 Indigenous dishes.                                                                                               56
4.3 Proximate analysis of the samples.                                                                      57
4.4 Vitamin analysis of the indigenous dishes.                                                         65
4.5 Mineral analysis.                                                                                                 72
4.6 Phytochemical analysis.                                                                                      81
4.7 Anti-nutrient analysis.                                                                                         85
4.8 Amino acid of the indigenous foods.                                                                  89 

5.1 Conclusion. 99
5.2 Recommendation. 100


Food could be defined as any substance consumed to provide nutritional support for the body (Anguilera and David, 1999). Food can be of either plant or animal origin, generally grouped into six classes and these are carbohydrates, protein, fat and oil, vitamins, minerals and water. According  to  Ayeomoni  (2011),  the  term  “food”  is an  aspect  of  cultural  tradition. It plays an inextricable role in human lives.  It  is  a  source  for  pleasure,  comfort  and security  and  also  a  symbol  of  hospitality,  a  means  for  social status  and  religious  values.  What  we  select  to  eat,  how  we prepare  it,  serve  it,  and  even  how  we  eat  it  are  all  factors that  touches  our  individual  cultural  inheritance  or  life.  Food plays  a  vital  role  in  our  daily  lives   because  without  food  we cannot  survive.

In the past years, rural household live essentially on natural foods cultivated  and processed using traditional and indigenous methods, even the condiments  used in cooking were sourced locally from indigenous plants materials for like, Iru (dadawa or locust bean) and shea-butte. These are presently replaced with maggi cubes and the likes. 

Nigeria  is  a  country  endowed  with  great  diversity  of  tribes and  languages  (Blench,  2012),   and  foods  of  various  kinds (Iwuugba  and  Eke,  1996).   Nigeria  diversity  in  foods may  not  be  different  from  the  evidence  that  traditions, believes  and  values  were  among  the  main  factors influencing the mode  of  food  preparation,  preference,  serving, nutritional  needs  and  food  categories  (Ayeomoni,  2011; Cox  and  Anderson,  2013).
Examples of indigenous food in the Western Nigeria among others are: ekuru, abari, egbo, sako, adun, aje-pass, ojojo, sagidi and South-Eastern Nigeria among others are: Abacha, Achicha ede ,Okpa Ayaraya ji, Ukwa which serves as snacks or food in the rural settings.  Indigenous  foods  in  Nigeria  have  an  important  role  in  the life  of  people.  Onimawo  (2010)  reported  that  in  Nigeria  the traditional  foods  with  potentials  are  available  and  are  many and  communities  have  evolved    their    own    preferences  and food  habits  overtime  and  will  rather  stick  to  what  is familiar .Indigenous  foods  in  Nigeria  did  not  just  come  at  a  glance among  its  producers,  but  as  a  form  of  extensive formulations  using  trial  and  error  methods.  What is bad is totally rejected and thrown away.  For  example,  Burukutu (indigenous  low  alcohol  beverage)  alone  was  said  to  have been  conceived  overtime.   It  was  concocted deliberately  to  kill  step-children  by  a  step-mother,  but unfortunately  for  her  the  children  drank-slept  and  woke-up asking  for  more  supply. It is necessary to be aware of special consideration of successful food studies and nutrition promotion activities are carried out with indigenous peoples using their own local food. 

Diverse  groups  and  varieties  of Nigerian  indigenous  foods  were  reported  by  many researchers  (Iwuoha  and  Eke,  1996;  Onimawa,  2010). Within  a  single  tribe,  it  is  easy  to  have  differences  in  the mode of  food  production  and  habits  (Ayeomoni,  2011).  For example  within  a  set  of  the  food  called  Kunu  (non-alcoholic drink),  there  are  diverse  subsets  of  Kunu.  Gaffa et al.  (2002) and Solange et al.  (2014)  reported categories of cereal beverages,  each  of  these  either  Kunun  gyada or  Kunun  zaki,  have  diverse  varieties.  The  mode  of preparation  of one  type of Kunu may differ significantly from one ace  to  another;  the  name  and  the  final  product may  also  vary  with  varying  potentials.  Similarly,  another variety  may  result  from  the  use  of  different  raw  materials. Ayo-lawal et al.  (2016)  reported  that  melon  seeds,  fluted pumpkin  and  castor  oil  seeds  are  used  to  create  different varieties  of  condiments  of  Ogiri  such  as  Ogiri-egusi,  Ogiriugu,  Ogiri-  isi  and  Ogiri-okepiye.  Besides  these,  there  are general  common  foods  that  are  either  consumed  or  seen  by at  least  half  of  the  population  of  Nigerian  such  as  Eba  or Tuwo.

The benefits of indigenous foods in communities cannot be overemphasized. The fact that it is often cheap and affordable to the small scale resource, poor rural dwellers and the nutritional benefits it offers. Indigenous and traditional foods, if promoted among the younger generations of the rural and urban dwellers could help to solve the global problem of poverty, hunger and malnutrition (Faber and Wenhold, 2007).Currently many Nigerian elders believe that one of the causes of high death rate among young Nigerians may not be farfetched from the consumption of some of the modern diets. In fact Nigerian indigenous foods have great nutritional and therapeutic potentials that one cannot just ignore. The advantages of using Nigerian indigenous foods for humanitarian interventions are numerous. It is recognized that indigenous foods and dietary diversity within an ecosystem can be powerful sources of nutrients and thus are better for health. It has been recognized that indigenous foods can play a major role in enhancing quality of diets and improving food and nutrition security. Using indigenous food in health promotion is most reasonably applied in areas where such foods is most likely to be recognized by the group and readily available .Indigenous foods  can  be  used  in  solving  diet  related  problems, such  as  in  combating  hunger  and  starvation,  malnutrition and  non-communicable  diseases. Faced  with  increasing  food  shortages, agriculturalists  and  food  scientists  are  becoming increasingly  interested  in  previously  neglected tropical  grains  and  indigenous  vegetables  such  as finger  millet,  amaranth  grain,  pigeon  pea,  field  bean, pumpkin,  sweet  potatoes  drumstick  leaves, amaranth  leaves  and  pumpkin  leaves  (Islam  2006). Indigenous  foods  are  rich  and inexpensive  sources  of  protein,  carbohydrates, dietary  fibre,  minerals  and  vitamins  to  millions  of peoples  in  developed  and developing countries,  and are  some  of  the  basic  foods  of  the  indigenous populations  of  Africa  (Luthria and Pastor-Corrales, 2006).  Further,  adaptation  to  adverse  environmental conditions,  resistance  to  pests,  cultural  acceptability and  sufficient  nutritional  qualities  are  the  key advantages  of  these indigenous foods. In developing countries  like  Kenya,  due  to  high  cost  and  limited access  to  animal  food  products  that  provide  high intakes  of  minerals  such  as  iron  and  zinc,  the  main dietary  sources  of  minerals  are cereals and legumes. Traditional  plant  foods  are  believed  to  be  highly nutritious; containing  high  levels  of  both vitamins  and minerals  (Orech  et  al.,  2007).  

 Despite this assentation, the use of indigenous foods has declined due to the non-availability of these foods in modern commercialized and industrialized markets and lack of investment in research and development.  The indigenous crops have been largely ignored by commercial farming, research and development, thus becoming less competitive than well-established major crops, and losing gradually their diversity and the associated traditional knowledge.

The recognition of the involvement of diet in the development of many diseases has led to an expansion in the number and range of studies of the relationship between diet and health and disease, which has led to a greater focus on nutrient data. A knowledge of the chemical composition of foods is the first essential in dietary treatment of disease or in any quantitative study of human nutrition (Greenfield and Southgate, 2003).
More detail is needed on the nutrient composition of indigenous foods and their amino acid profile in literature. Consequently this study aims to investigate the chemical composition of some selected indigenous dishes in Imo state with emphasis on amino acid profile. 

The traditional food systems of indigenous people contain a wealth of micronutrients that have been poorly described and reported in scientific literature (Kuhnlein, 2003). The typical  diets  of  vulnerable  populations  with  high prevalence  of  malnutrition and under nutrition consist predominantly  of  starch-rich  staples,  such  as  a cereal  or  tuber,  with  limited  amounts  of  fruits, vegetables,  legumes  and  pulses  (Solomon & Owolawashe,  2007).  Such  diets  are  bulky,  have low  nutrient  density  and  poor  bioavailability  of minerals  and  vitamins  and  therefore  result  in impaired  growth,  development  and  a  host  of  chronic diseases. Traditional knowledge and diverse food resources   may be substantial enough to be used to improve nutrition status. Agriculture and public health agents ignore the potentials of indigenous foods to provide micronutrient and other basic nutrients required for good health. Nigerian nutritionists and dieticians are faced with difficulty in assessing the nutritional composition of indigenous dishes since they only consult a few available published references on Nigeria dishes and food which are fragmented in some books and journal. Some of the information available are outdated and no proper documentation of improved or revised versions of such information exists (Obiakor et al, 2014). Therefore this poses a problem to dietary counseling prescription. The inadequacy of scientific coverage prevents the information from being included in health training programs and public-health promotion programs.  Knowledge of the nutritive value of indigenous dishes, soup ingredients and local food stuffs is necessary in order to encourage the increase consumption of these foods. Consequently, a detailed evaluation of the nutritional component of these indigenous dishes is imperative. People working in the health sector who wish to incorporate traditional knowledge about locally available food should first enlist the collaboration of indigenous communities. 

The general objective of this study is to evaluate the chemical composition and amino acid profile of some selected indigenous foods in Imo state. 

The specific objectives are to:

i.   Identify   the commonly eaten indigenous foods in Imo state. 

ii. Determine the proximate composition (energy, protein, fat ash, crude fiber, and carbohydrate) of some selected indigenous foods in Imo state. 

iii. Determine   the vitamin composition (Vitamin: A, B1, B2, B3, C, and E) of some selected indigenous foods in Imo state. 

iv. Determine the mineral composition (Fe, Zn, Ca, Mg, K, P, and Na) of some selected indigenous foods in Imo state. 

v.   Determine the anti-nutrients (tannin, phytate, trypsin inhibitor) and phyto- chemical (phenol, saponin, flavonoids) of some selected indigenous foods in Imo state. 

iv. Determine the amino acid profile of some selected indigenous foods in Imo state. 

The outcome of this study will shed more light on the relevance of indigenous food selection in changing eating pattern and life style for the public.  This work will inform policy makers who will promote indigenous foods as an important cultural heritage that must be preserved as well as a crucial contributor to the diet (providing essential micronutrients and health benefits). The amino acid profile  and the chemical composition will form the basis which the nutritionist and home economist will educate people as well as provide recommendation that could be utilized by the relevant authorities to improve food intervention program  in Imo state and Nigeria at large. The agricultural and public-health sector agents who are working with indigenous people will be aware of the potential of the local food resources to provide micronutrients and other basic nutrients required for good health. 

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