It is one of the well-known and widely consumed legumes in West Africa, known for its filling and energy benefit.
Cowpea, according to scientists, holds the key to Ghana’s mineral deficiency.
Findings from a recent study suggest the crop has the potential to supply the body with all essential minerals.
The findings were published in the Agricultural and Food Science Journal of Ghana.
The researchers sampled six varieties released by Crops Research
Institute of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research.
They include: Hans Adua, Nketewade, Zamzam, Asomdwee, Hewale and Agyenkwa.
“With its varied use”, says the leader of the study team, Dr. John Addo, “there was the need to evaluate these Cowpea varieties in areas of mineral levels, cooking characteristics, bulk density, among others, to support its utilization.”
The results found appreciable levels of calcium and potassium.
Sodium levels in cowpea met the daily intake requirements.
Researchers say a good potassium and sodium balance in these cowpea varieties could provide assurance of protection against osteoporosis, a type of bone infection and heart-related diseases.
This is due to their high magnesium, manganese, iron and copper content.
Zinc content ranged between 9.72 and 11.52 mg per kilogram.
For this reason the researchers recommend diet formulation for hypertensive patients