Submitted to: Journal of Food Composition and Analysis
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: January 9, 2006
Publication Date: May 18, 2006
Citation: Wall, M.M. 2006. Ascorbic acid, provitamin A, and mineral composition of banana (Musa sp.) and papaya (Carica papaya) cultivars grown in Hawaii. Journal of Food Composition and Analysis. 19:434-455. Interpretive Summary: Bananas and papayas were harvested from different locations throughout the state of Hawaii and analyzed for vitamin C, provitamin A, and mineral composition. Dwarf Brazilian ('apple') bananas were more nutritious than Williams (Cavendish) bananas, having higher concentrations of vitamin C, provitamin A, and the minerals P, Ca, Mg, Mn, and Zn. Vitamin C content was almost three times higher in Dwarf Brazilian bananas than in Williams fruit. In general, bananas are a good source of K, Mg, Cu, and Mn in the diet. Papayas can be an important source of vitamin C, provitamin A, and Mg for Pacific island populations. The average vitamin C content for papaya fruit was 51.2 mg/100 g. One cup of papaya cubes (140 g) would provide between 80% and 96% of the Dietary Reference Intake (DRI) for vitamin C for the average adult male and female. Depending on cultivar, this same amount of papaya would provide between 3% and 9% of the DRI for provitamin A for an adult.
Technical Abstract: Banana (Musa sp.) and papaya (Carica papaya) cultivars were harvested from different locations throughout Hawaii and analyzed for vitamin C (ascorbic acid), provitamin A ( ß-carotene, alpha-carotene, ß-cryptoxanthin), and mineral composition. Dwarf Brazilian ('apple') bananas had almost three times more vitamin C (12.70 mg/100 g fresh weight) and 1.5 times more provitamin A (12.44 ug RAE/100 g) than Williams fruit (4.45 mg/100 g and 8.15 ug RAE/100 g). Bananas contained higher concentrations of lutein than of the provitamin A pigments, alpha- and ß-carotene. Papaya mean vitamin C content was 51.2 mg/100g, with no significant differences among cultivars. An adult female could meet the dietary reference intake (DRI) for vitamin C by consuming about three-quarters (~150 g) of a medium papaya fruit. The provitamin A content for papayas averaged 44.1 ug RAE/100 g, and ranged from 18.7 to 74.0 ug RAE/100 g. Lycopene was not detected in the yellow-fleshed cultivars, Kapoho, Laie Gold, and Rainbow, but the red-fleshed Sunrise and SunUp had 1350 to 3674 ug lycopene per 100 g. Dwarf Brazilian bananas had higher P, Ca, Mg, Mn, and Zn contents than Williams fruit. The average K content for Hawaii's bananas was 330.6 mg/100 g. Banana K, Ca, and Mg levels were highest in fruit harvested from Oahu, and Mn content was highest in fruit harvested from Maui. Papayas (100 g) contained 9% of the DRI for Cu, 6-8% of the DRI for Mg, but less than 3% of the DRI for most other minerals. Older soils on Kauai, Maui, and Oahu had higher Mn levels than the youngest soils on the island of Hawaii. However, soil mineral analyses were not clearly related to fruit mineral compositions, except for sodium in coastal plantations.