NUTRITIVE VALUE OF THREE POTENTIAL COMPLEMENTARY FOODS BASED ON CEREALS AND LEGUMES|
The objectives of the study were to formulate composite blends (weaning foods) based on locally available cereals and legumes, to chemically evaluate their nutrient values, and compare with those of a proprietary formula and recommended daily allowance (RDA). The study is part of the effort to provide home-based complementary (weaning) foods that can be more cost effective to the low income families. Three composite blends were formulated based on protein basis of the food commodities used. Standard procedures of Association of Official Analytical Chemists (AOAC) were used to determine the proximate chemical composition. Technicon amino acid analyzer was used to detect and quantify neither amino acids using nor leucine as the internal standard, while atomic absorption spectrophotometer and ion chromatographic analyzer were used to determine the mineral element composition. The overall results indicated that crude protein, lipid, fibre, ash, moisture, energy and carbohydrate were either comparable or higher than values in the proprietary formula. The subject formulae would meet the RDA for protein, lipid, magnesium, manganese and fluoride based on an estimated daily intake of 65 g of weaning foods by a normal six months old infant in Jos, Nigeria. The subject diets would not meet the RDA for other nutrients based on the same estimation. It is therefore recommended that infants fed on these formulations be breastfed for at least two years, since the formulations are not intended to substitute breast milk, but to complement it. Frequent feeding on these foods is also recommended to increase daily nutrient intake. Inclusion of other nutrient-dense food commodities or appropriate micronutrients is necessary to raise the level of nutrients. The researchers believe that complementary foods formulated from locally available food commodities have great potential in providing nutritious foods that are practical, food-based approaches, aimed at combating the problem of malnutrition among infants and children in Nigeria in particular, and developing counties in general.
Complementary foods, Cereals, Legumes