Assessment of trace elements in herbal and conventional beverages consumed in Nairobi city

Study on beverage consumption has increasingly become important due to their nutraceutical

 

role. The study was aimed at quantifying both total and labile trace elements content between

 

herbal and conventional beverages. Forty three beverages were classified into coffee, herbal,

 

spiced tea, plain tea chocolates/cocoa and soybean beverages. Nine elements (K, Ca, Cr, Mn, Fe,

 

Cu, Zn Sr and Rb) were analyzed among the herbal and conventional beverage samples

 

consumed around Nairobi using TXRF-Ga internal standard method and then the data on labile

 

trace elements subjected to chemometric evaluation in an attempt to classify the beverage

 

samples based on their trace element concentration.

 

Total K ranged from 127.9 mg g -1 in coffee samples to 17.1 mg g -1 in soybean beverages calcium

 

concentration ranged from 16.7 –2038 g g-1 in spiced tea and soybean beverages respectively.

 

Total Cr ranged from 9.2 –15.2 g g-1 among spiced tea and plain herbal respectively. Total Mn

 

ranged from 21.2– 853 g g-1 among the soybean and plain tea beverages respectively. Total iron

 

concentration raged between 67.3 – 826 g g-1 among soybean and plain herbal beverages

 

respectively. Cu concentration ranged between 9.6 – 10.3 g g-1 among the spiced tea and plain

 

tea samples respectively. Zn concentration ranged between 16.4 – 37.4 g g-1 among the spiced

 

tea and plain tea samples respectively. Total rubidium concentration ranged between 44.6 – 72.6

 

g g-1 among the soybean beverages and coffee beverage samples respectively.

 

From the PCA analysis, two principal components were identified for the both macro and labile

 

elements in beverage samples. Cluster analysis identified eight (8) groups among the 31 grouped

 

beverage samples based on labile trace element content. A strong correlation (0.88) was

 

identified for mg and Zn. While negative correlation was identified between K – Mn (0.15) and

 

K – Fe (0.13) relations.

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