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J Agric Food Chem. 2013 Dec 18;61(50):12380-4. doi: 10.1021/jf404230z. Epub 2013 Dec 6.

Ipomoea batatas (L.) Lam.: a rich source of lipophilic phytochemicals.

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Competence Centre in Exact Science and Engineering and ‡Competence Centre of Life Sciences, University of Madeira , 9000-390 Funchal, Portugal.


The lipophilic extracts from the storage root of 13 cultivars of sweet potato (Ipomoea batatas (L.) Lam.) were evaluated by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry with the aim to valorize them and offer information on their nutritional properties and potential health benefits. The amount of lipophilic extractives ranged from 0.87 to 1.32% dry weight. Fatty acids and sterols were the major families of compounds identified. The most abundant saturated and unsaturated fatty acids were hexadecanoic acid (182-428 mg/kg) and octadeca-9,12-dienoic acid (133-554 mg/kg), respectively. β-Sitosterol was the principal phytosterol, representing 55.2-77.6% of this family, followed by campesterol. Long-chain aliphatic alcohols and α-tocopherol were also detected but in smaller amounts. The results suggest that sweet potato should be considered as an important dietary source of lipophilic phytochemicals.

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