SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH ADOPTS ATAMA MORE NUTRITIOUS THAN ORS

Atama leave

A scientific research has revealed that Atama has more nutritive content than Afang.

Chief Executive Officer and Founder of Jay Nutri-Light Foundation (JNLF) Idaraesit Atakpa in a report posted on social media have insight on the research report.

Idaraesit Atakpa, the researcher

Atakpa who is a professional Food Scientist, Registered Nutritionist, and Food Connioisseur quoting a source asserted that nutritive value of some vegetables lies in the presence of mineral element and vitamin.

He future stated in his report that Atama and Afang has the following proximate compositions such as moisture, ash, crude fat, crude protein, fibre content, and carbohydrate, the mineral compositions (Na, K, P, Ca, Mg, Fe, and Zn); and anti- nutrients (oxalate, phytate, hydrocyanic acid and tanin).

Atama soup

The report also stated that the percent crude protein, crude fat moisture content, carbohydrate values (38.40%, 24.69%, 84.70% and 10.48%) of Atama were significantly (p<0.05) higher than values obtained from Afang (26.50%, 14.34%, 63.78% and 6.75%) respectively.

Atakpa’s research also showed that Afang has more mineral elements than Atama as o gained from the scientific research

“the concentration of mineral elements phosphorous, potassium iron, magnesium and calcium were (1.25%, 1.64%, 3.05%, 2.39% and 2.22%) respectively in Atama and (0.14%, 0.10%, 1.15%, 0.92% and 0.45%) in Afang respectively. The values of minerals elements were significantly higher (p<0.05) higher than values obtained from Heinesia crinita (1.20%, 3.51%, 10.12% and 0.78%) respectively.

In the concluding remarks, Atakpa asserted that Atama has more nutritive content than Afang but also advised that both Afang and Atama possed “adequate nutrients and mineral elements which are needed for normal growth in humans”

FULL RESEARCH REPORT

COMPARATIVE ANALYSIS, ANTI-NUTRIENT AND NUTRITIONAL COMPOSITION OF HEINSIA CRINITA (ATAMA) AND GNETUM AFRICANUM (AFANG)
BY
ATAKPA, IDARAESIT E. (RDN, CNS, CCN, CNC)
CEO Jaypee De La Crème Foods
Founder Jay Nutri-Light Foundation (JNLF)

Vegetable is fresh edible portion of plant consumed in either raw or cooked form, technically all plants are vegetables ATAKPA, (2011). Encyclopedia Britannica (1975) reported that food value of vegetables varies from species to species and also owning to the last amount of water present in each species.

Opeke (2000) Observed that the nutritive value of some vegetables lies in the presence of mineral element and vitamin.
Heinsia Crinita commonly known as “Atama” (Efik, and Ibibio) is from the family Rubiaceae. It is found in the tropical rain forest and required annual rain fall of about 250mm (Brokaw, 1989). It is shrub in nature and it is propagated by stems, seeds and roots. The leaves of Heinsia Crinita are popular and much cherished vegetable considering its aroma and lasting sweet taste left in the mouth long after it consumption.

The soup is sometimes prepared using oil palm fruit extract in water.
Heinsia Crinita soup is very common in almost all the homes in Akwa-Ibom State and Cross River State of Nigeria. This is a cultural delicacy among the Akwa Cross. Countries like Cote d’ivoire, Cameroon and Ghana also like using palm fruit as a base in the Atama soup. The most important features of this plants is that the leaves are very cheap compare to that of Gnetum Africana. (Afang) there are different types of Atama leaves, the aromatic ones, less aromatic and slightly bitter ones.

This soup is very delicious with an amazing flavor and great aroma, and can be a little bit spicy. You can also prepare Atama soup with waterleaf. The essence of being a vegetable soup makes this a healthy meal.

Gnetum Africanum commonly known as Afang (Efik), Okazi (Igbo), Eru (Cameroon) grows natural in humid forest is from the family Gnetaceae. It is widely distributed in the forest zones from Nigeria through Cameroon, Central African Republic and Gabon to Angola. Gnetum Africanum is a source of rapid incomes to farmers and buyers visits local village in Akwa-Ibom State and Cross River State on daily basis. The leaves are important ingredients in preparing tasty soup in many homes in South-South and South East of Nigeria. Gnetum Africanum can be propagated through vines, seeds and roots.

The proximate composition (moisture, ash, crude fat, crude protein, fibre content, and carbohydrate), the mineral compositions (Na, K, P, Ca, Mg, Fe, and Zn); and anti- nutrients (oxalate, phytate, hydrocyanic acid and tanin) were determined in Gnetum Africanum and Heinsia Crinita. The percent crude protein, crude fat moisture content, carbohydrate values (38.40%, 24.69%, 84.70% and 10.48%) of Heinsia Crinita were significantly (p<0.05) higher than values obtained from Gnetum Africanum (26.50%, 14.34%, 63.78% and 6.75%) respectively. The concentration of mineral elements phosphorous, potassium iron, magnesium and calcium were (1.25%, 1.64%, 3.05%, 2.39% and 2.22%) respectively in Heinsia crinita and (0.14%, 0.10%, 1.15%, 0.92% and 0.45%) respectively. The values of minerals elements were significantly higher (p<0.05) higher than values obtained from Heinesia crinita (1.20%, 3.51%, 10.12% and 0.78%) respectively. The result shows that Heinsia Crinita have more nutritive values than Gnetum Africanum which are needed for a variety of cellular functions in humans and which could reduce the problem of protein energy malnutrition (PEM).

CONCLUSION
The study reveals that Heinsia Crinita (Atama) has more nutritive content than Gnetum Africanum (Afang). However, both plants contain adequate nutrients and mineral elements which are needed for normal growth by Human beings. Moreover, it is recommended that people should consume more of Heinsia Crinita (Atama) than more of Gnetum Africanum (Afang). which are more common in the southern part of Nigeria.

May I poise that this is a generational misconception to compare Atama to Afang in terms of palatability, and health benefits.
As a professional Food Scientist, Registered Nutritionist, & a Food Connioisseur having analysed critically, I do solemnly conclude that Atama Soup is the greatest of all delicacy. The best delicacy in Akwa Ibom State and beyond.

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