Lipid Profile and Levels of Omega-3 and Omega- 6 Fatty Acids Present in Jack fruit (Atocarpus heterophyllus) Lam (Moraceae) in Selected Areas and Variation in Treatments
Ojwang, Redemtor Awour
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Fatty acids are divided into two main categories, saturated and unsaturated fatty acids. The body can synthesize most saturated fatty acids while it cannot synthesize most unsaturated fatty acids. The most important groups of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUF A) are the Omega-3 and Omega-S families. They are associated with numerous health benefits such as reducing the risk of heart diseases and cancer. The aim of this study was to screen for lipid content, lipid profile, levels of Omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids in Jackfruit seeds from Nairobi, Malindi, Mombasa, Kisumu, Kakamega, and Uganda. The study also determined the effect of boiling and drying on the lipid profile, levels of omega-3 and omega-6 from all the six regions. Lipids were extracted in chloroform/methanol using Folch Method and quantified. Characterization was done through determination of iodine and saponification numbers. Derivatization for GC analysis was done in methanolic sulphuric acid and lipid profile obtained through GC analysis. The lipid content was found to be 0.45 ± 0.24% and iodine number was 53.68 ± 3.12. The saponification number was 350.71 ± 12.5, which implies that the lipid consists of short-chained fatty acids. The composition of unsaturated fatty acids was found to be higher than that of saturated fatty acids. The levels of Omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids was found to be 9.94 ± 0.99%, while that of Omega-6 was 31.19 ± 0.82 %. Boiling and drying of seeds was found to decrease levels ofOmega-3 and Omega 6 fatty acids and thus not suitable methods for processing or preservation. The lipid would also not be suitable for use as cooking fat but can be used for cake icing and creams because of its sweet scent. Key words: Omega-3 fatty acids, lipid profile, Jackfruit.