Effects of domestic processing methods on the phytochemical content of watercress (Nasturtium officinale)

Food Chem. 2016 Dec 1;212:411-9. doi: 10.1016/j.foodchem.2016.05.190. Epub 2016 Jun 1.

Abstract

The impact of conventional cooking and processing methods on total phenols, antioxidant activity, carotenoids and glucosinolates of watercress was evaluated. Boiling significantly decreases phenolic content, antioxidant activity and recoverable glucosinolates, however it increases the carotenoid concentrations of watercress as compared to the raw vegetable. Cooking by microwaving and steaming maintains the majority of phytochemicals in comparison to the fresh material, suggesting that they should be used as the preferred methods of watercress preparation. Boiling of watercress should be avoided to ensure maximum ingestion of watercress-derived beneficial phytochemicals.

Keywords: Brassica; Carotenoids; Flavonols; Glucosinolates; Phenolics; Phytochemicals; Processing; Watercress.

MeSH terms

  • Antioxidants / analysis
  • Antioxidants / chemistry
  • Carotenoids / analysis
  • Carotenoids / chemistry
  • Cooking / methods
  • Glucosinolates / analysis
  • Glucosinolates / chemistry
  • Microwaves
  • Nasturtium / chemistry*
  • Phenols / analysis
  • Phenols / chemistry
  • Phytochemicals / analysis
  • Phytochemicals / chemistry*
  • Plant Extracts / analysis
  • Plant Extracts / chemistry*
  • Steam

Substances

  • Antioxidants
  • Glucosinolates
  • Phenols
  • Phytochemicals
  • Plant Extracts
  • Steam
  • Carotenoids