JC Ngumah, JN Okereke, EU Ezeji and I Emeka-Nwabunnia
Heavy metal composition and Phytochemical constituents of selected herbal remedies sold in Owerri, South East Nigeria, were studied using standard laboratory procedures. Results obtained revealed that apart from proteins, all the phytochemicals studied were present in all the samples. High levels of phenol, flavonoids, glycosides, steroids and terpenoids were present in most of the samples. Total phenol values as high as 22900.88±1409.19 µg/ml and flavonoids 2644.89±6.94 µg/ml were recorded. Heavy metals identified in these samples included Zn, Ni, Cr, Cd, Pb and Hg. The concentration of Pb (0.081-0.124 ppm), Zn (0.045 -0.223 ppm), Cd (0.003 to 0.045 ppm) and the other heavy metals analyzed did not exceed the approved permissible limits. High levels of these heavy metals when consumed by humans can cause serious health issues. Also, the presence of high levels of phenolic acid, flavonoids, tannins, and alkaloids in samples is a strong indication of the therapeutic capacity of the samples. Therefore, it is important to ensure that this natural resource continues to be beneficial to the global health sector, it is important to set uniform standards and to monitor the quality of herbal treatments for dangerous ingredients.
Pages: 287-291 | 446 Views 195 Downloads