Antioxidant effectiveness of plant cultures.
Introduction. Since the natural antioxidants do not cause any undesirable side effects, they have more preferences in comparison to those synthetic. The objectives of this article are to reveal the plants to be determined as antioxidants' concentrators among the berries and herbs in order to highlight the ways of their practical usage in food technologies. Materials and methods. Four sorts of cultivated berries and eight species of wild herbs were studied to define their general antioxidant effectiveness. Ten specimens of herbs were examined to reveal the amount and level of bioflavonoids in water-andalcohol extracts experimentally obtained. The amount of ascorbic acid, bioflavonoids, and carotenoids was determined by traditional methods. Results and discussions. The maximal amount of ascorbic acid (mg/100 g) was revealed in black currants - 234, cherries - 62.2, chokeberries - 129, wild strawberries 104, blackberries 68.8. In addition, all the berries listed differ with high amount of bioflavonoids (mg/100 g) - correspondingly, 1858 in black currants; 1340 in cherries; 2460 in chokeberries; 1978 in wild strawberries; 2447 in blackberries. There was observed the natural correlation between the amounts of these two groups of antioxidants in the raw materials researched. This would allow proving the expedience to use them in obtaining the foodstuffs with antioxidant targeting. The ranking of berries alleged as the most utile to correct the amount of ascorbic acid, bioflavonoids, and carotenoids in accordance with recommended daily intakes, looks like this (mg/100 g): chokeberries - 100, blackberries - 2514, bilberries - 2199 black currants 2096, wild strawberries - 2084, cherries - 1405. Relatively high amount of bioflavonoids that act together and henceforth serve as buffer antioxidant system was found in herbs (mg/100 g): St. John's wort - 3.89, oregano - 2.98, immortelle - 2.638, melissa - 1.685, and thyme - 1.470. Under previously determined indices of the main extraction parameters, 85 percents of bioflavonoids diffused into the extract from St. John's wort; more than 60 percents from black currants, melissa, thyme, salvia, and immortelle; ca 40 percents from oregano; less than 30 percents from nettle and birch. This can be explained by many factors such as different amount of food cellulose, which, in general, affects the bioflavonoid diffusion coefficient during extraction. Conclusions. The plant raw materials which are endemic for moderate climatic zone - cultivated and feral berries as well as herbs - with high antioxidant content should become the integrate part of foods and drinks elaborated to protect the human organism from harmful free-radical impacts.