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Kenyatta University (2014)

Assessment of the levels of thiocyanate in processed and unprocessed red and brown finger millet ( eleusine coracana) grown in Mogotio area, Baringo county, Kenya

Chebet, Silva Jerono

Titre : Assessment of the levels of thiocyanate in processed and unprocessed red and brown finger millet ( eleusine coracana) grown in Mogotio area, Baringo county, Kenya

Auteur : Chebet, Silva Jerono

Université de soutenance : Kenyatta University

Grade : Master of Science (MS) 2014

Résumé
Finger millet (Eleusine coracana) is an important African staple food crop in the tropics. The crop contains cyanogenic glycosides which can be readily converted to thiocyanate by glycosidases and sulfur transferase enzymes present in the plant or in the animal tissues. Thiocyanate inhibits the uptake of iodine by the iodide pump of the thyroid gland thus acting as a goitrogen which suppresses thyroid function leading to goiter. Goiter increases the risk of thyroid irradiation in the event of a nuclear accident and hypothyroidism during pregnancy which may cause minor brain damage of offspring. In 1994 the National goiter prevalence in Kenya was 16.3%. Survey data from Rift Valley where Mogotio is situated indicated total goiter prevalence around 20%. Research has associated millet diets with goiter although the thiocyanate content of finger millet is still unknown. Finger Millet is edible as whole grain or cooked. The dry grains can be processed prior to cooking by soaking, sprouting and fermentation. The green and the dry leaves are used as animal feed so that the whole crop is utilized. The red and the brown varieties of finger millet are commonly grown in Mogotio. It was therefore important to determine the level of thiocyanate in processed and unprocessed finger millet in the region to obtain information that will be precautionary in addressing goiter. The levels of thiocyanate were analysed in the dry, sprouted and soaked grains, fresh, fermented and cooked flour. The green and dry leaves of the plant were also analysed for thiocyanate. Samples of the red and brown varieties of finger millet were randomly selected from the farmers in the area. Thiocyanate content was analysed using UV-VIS spectrophotometric detection. The data was analysed using ANOVA and independent T-test. Separation of means was done by SNK test. Levels of thiocyanate content in the red finger millet ranged from 43.48±1.56 to 4.28±0.5 mg/kg with the fresh dried grains having the highest followed by sprouted grains and cooked flour had the lowest levels. For the brown finger millet levels ranged from 53.30±0.78 to 4.96±0.40 mg/kg, with sprouted grains having the highest levels while cooked flour had the least amount. Green leaves had 31.69±0.71 and dried leaves had 8.80±0.14 mg/kg. The results indicated that, there were significant differences between the levels that were found in the grains and the flour (p< 0.001). The amounts measured in the current research indicate that the thiocyanate content found in the finger millet samples were within the recommended levels (100 mg/kg) but the frequency of ingestion may still result into health risks. It is therefore advocated that processing prior to cooking be encouraged as this reduces thiocyanate levels

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