The edible parts of Brassica plants are a rich source of phytochemical compounds which possess strong antioxidant potential. These plants contain a variety of phytochemical compound including phenolics, polyphenols, phenolic acids, flavonoids, carotenoids (zeaxanthin, lutein, β-carotene), alkaloids, phytosterols chlorophyll, glucosinolates, terpenoids, and glycosides. These plants possess strong antioxidant potential in terms of metal reducing, metal chelating, lipid reducing and free radical scavenging activities. These also have a positive effect on the activity of antioxidant enzymes such as glutathione peroxidase, superoxide dismutase, catalase, and ascorbate peroxidase. Among various species of genus Brassica studied for their phytochemical composition and antioxidant activity, Brassica oleracea leaves, florets and seeds have better phytochemical and antioxidant profile. Brassica juncea, Brassica napus, Brassica rapa and Brassica nigra are also the phytochemical and antioxidant rich species of genus Brassica. The phytochemical profile and antioxidant potential of Brassica plants make them the preferable candidates for nutritional and pharmaceutical applications.
Part of the book: Brassica Germplasm
Corn seeds are used as a nutritional source for humans, and the stem and leaves are utilized as fodder for cattle throughout the world. Corn silk and corn cob are usually discarded as waste. This chapter highlights the nutritional as well as medicinal importance of various parts of corn plant. All parts of corn plant are good source of a variety of bioactive phytochemical compounds which possess antioxidant potential. The principal phytochemicals present in corn seed and corn silk include polyphenols, phenolic acids, flavonoids, anthocyanins, glycosides, carotenoids, and polysaccharides of biological importance, reducing compounds and some water-soluble vitamins. The presence of these phytochemicals makes corn a medicinal plant which shows various biological activities particularly the antioxidant, antimicrobial, antidiabetic, anti-obesity, antiproliferative, hepatoprotective, cardioprotective, and renal-protective activities. On the account of its high antioxidant potential, all parts of corn plant can be used for the management of oxidative stress and the treatment of various diseases.
Part of the book: Corn