THE EFFECT OF EXPLORATION ACTIVITIES ON MINERAL ELEMENTS IN FLUTED PUMPKIN LEAVES
The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of exploration activities on the mineral elements in Telfairia Occidentalis leaves. We have mapped out four locations which include three in Delta state under the influence of exploration activity and the last one in Edo State which is free from this activity. Surfer 19 was used to contour the data measured using Global Positioning System (GPS) device during field work. Hanna pH meter was used to note pH result while electrical conductivity meter measures the amount of salt concentration in the leaves. The result indicates that the leaves content is alkaline with little salt content. When a diet is alkaline, it is essential for the maintenance of good health. These two parameters are linearly related with the correlation coefficient of approximately 0.9. The major equipment used for the analysis of mineral element concentration is Atomic Absorption Spectrophotometer (AAS) 969. The result presents elements like potassium, calcium, magnesium and sodium as those with high concentration, but when considered the percentage contribution to recommended dietary allowance, the most appreciable nutrient element among them is magnesium. Magnesium is important element in connection with ischemic heart disease, protein formation and cellular replication. However, the results obtained in our research indicate that the leaves collected in the areas influenced by exploration activities contain high concentration of mineral element than those taken from the free zone.
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