Nutritional, phytochemical and diverse health-promoting qualities of Cleome gynandra

Crit Rev Food Sci Nutr. 2022;62(13):3535-3552. doi: 10.1080/10408398.2020.1867055. Epub 2021 Jan 5.


Cleome gynandra (Syn. Gynandropsis gynandra) is fast emerging as one of the most widely consumed leafy vegetables due to its nutrition and health-promoting properties. In addition to its high nutritional content, the plant has a rich pool of diverse antioxidant phytochemicals. The current review provides a critical appraisal on the increasing nutritional significance of Cleome gynandra due to its rich pool of natural bioactive compounds and beneficial health-promoting qualities. The rich nutritional content especially the high levels of macro- and micronutrients is an indication of its potential to mitigate malnutrition and the increasing incidence of diet-related obesity and non-communicable diseases. The presence of health-promoting natural compounds, notably polyphenols, glucosinates and terpernoids has been confirmed in Cleome gynandra using different analytical methods. Cleome gynandra possesses high levels of α-tocopherol, β-tocopherol and γ-tocopherol, ascorbic acid, α-carotene, β-carotene, lutein, violaxanthin, and β-cryptoxanthin. These nutritional compounds could be useful in food applications as supplements, colorants and extending shelf-life of food products. Cleome gynandra extracts have demonstrated promising effects in several biological assays using in vitro and in vivo systems. Clearly, diversified diets that include a regular intake of dark green leafy vegetables including Cleome gynandra, holds great promise in ensuring food and nutrition security.

Keywords: Antioxidant; ascorbic acid; carotenoids; mineral content; phenolic acids; tocopherols.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Antioxidants / analysis
  • Cleome* / chemistry
  • Phytochemicals / analysis
  • Plant Leaves / chemistry
  • Vegetables / chemistry


  • Antioxidants
  • Phytochemicals