Vitellaria paradoxa Wood as a Potential Source of Dietary Fibre
In the tropical developing countries, diseases such as diabetes, tuberculosis, cancer, obesity have been a continuous cause of mortality. In recent times, nutrition experts have come up with new ideas for food recipe, with a view to improving human health. One of these ideas is to enhance dietary fibre content to improve food digestibility and bowel movement. In this study the effect of the processed insoluble wood fibres on the blood system of albino rats was studied by feeding the rats with the processed Vitellaria paradoxa wood fibres added to the animals’ normal diet for a period of 28 days across four treatments namely the control, 10%, 15% and 20% processed wood fibres.. These cellulosic materials incorporated into normal diet of the albino rats did not cause a reduction in the live weight of the experimental animals. A paired sample t- test conducted on the two sets of data indicated no significant difference (P = 0.8390 > 0.05) in the mean difference between mean initial and final haematocrit. Therefore the wood fibre supplemented diet did not have had any deleterious effects on the quality and quantity of the rats’ blood. Thus there is also a possibility that the cellulosic fibres did not reduce the plasma cholesterol level concentrations of the rats. Processed wood was also used in baking bread. The addition of cellulosic fibres did not negatively affect the physical, chemical and baking properties of bread, but it prolonged the shelf-life of the bread.
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