Iron content in leafy plants cultivated in Bosnia and Herzegovina
Iron deficiency anemia is one of the main health issues that has an impact on cognitive function, physical ability, immune function, and reproductive performance. Therefore, this study focused on the determination of iron content in leafy plants cultivated in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and the average daily intake of iron via consumption of these plants. The plant samples were prepared by wet digestion with nitric acid (HNO3), and iron content was determined using flame atomic absorption spectrometry (FAAS). The mean concentration of Fe ranged from 41.97 mg/kg for Brassica oleracea var. acephala to 338.73 mg/kg for Spinacia oleracea. Daily intakes for different leafy plants were also calculated. The leafy plants were arranged by daily iron intake in the following decreasing order Spinacia oleracea > Beta vulgaris > Atriplex hortensis > Urtica dioica > Brassica oleracea var. acephala. Results from this study indicate that leafy plants can be a significant source of iron. The findings conclusively suggest that our local leafy plants are good source of iron through diet.
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