The effect of Sprouting on the in vitro Digestibility of Maize and Cowpea


  • Olu Malomo College of Food Science, Bells University of Technology, Ota P.M.B. 1015, Ota, Ogun State, Nigeria.
  • A. E. Alamu College of Food Science, Bells University of Technology, Ota P.M.B. 1015, Ota, Ogun State, Nigeria.
  • S. O. Oluwajoba College of Food Science, Bells University of Technology, Ota P.M.B. 1015, Ota, Ogun State, Nigeria.


In vitro Digestibility, Sprouting, Germination, Protein


Despite the high protein content of cowpeas, their maximum contribution to nutrition has not been fully exploited in many parts of the world because of the following problems: the presence of anti-nutritional factors, such as trypsin inhibitor, which are common with legumes; flatulence factors; low level of sulphur amino acids, particularly methionine; and, in many instances, the inconvenience involved in their long preparation into local dishes. Moreover, there is the problem of the beany off-flavour. Grinding treatments that break most of the cells and release the cell contents of raw legumes prevent the subsequent development of the characteristic beany flavor on cooking. An off-flavour develops when ground raw legumes are suspended in water probably because of mixing of the cell contents enzyme lipoxygenase and could be controlled by adjusting the pH of the slurry towards the acid side.

Germination is widely claimed as a means of correcting nutrient deficiencies of particular seeds, especially through alterations in the amino acid balance of the proteins and enhancement of the content of vitamins. This wide belief is emphasized and investigated in this research. In maize, however, the various food enzymes exited during germination had already played vital roles in breaking down the higher molecular components to simple molecules especially protein, which eases the digestibility as depicted in this investigation.


Download data is not yet available.


Aykroyd, W.R. & Doughty, J. (1964). Legumes in Human Nutrition. FAO Nutritional Studies No. 19.

Bau, H.M., Villaume, C., Nicolas, J.P. & Méjean, L. (1997). Effect of Germination on Chemical Composition, Biochemical Constituents and Antinutritional Factors of Soya Bean (Glycine max) Seeds. J. Sci. Food Agric., 73(1): 1–9.;2-B.

Blanchard, M.P. (ed) (1975). The Sprouter's Cookbook. Garden Way Publishing. Co., Charlotte, VT.

Boulter, D. & Barber, J.T. (1963). Amino-acid metabolism in germinating seeds of Vicia faba L. In relation to their biology. New Phytol., 62(3): 301–316.

Chen, L.H., Wells, C.E. & Fordham, J.R. (1975). Germinated seeds for human consumption. J. Food Sci., 40(6): 1290–1294.

Chen, L.H. & Pan, S.H. (1977). Decrease of phytates during germination of pea seeds (Pisum sativa). Nutr. Rep. Int., 16: 125–131.

Cunningham, S.D., Cater, C.M. & Mattil, K.F. (1978). Effects of germination on cottonseed protein. J. Food Sci., 43(1): 102–105.

Dhaliwal, Y.S. & Aggarwal, R.A.K. (1999). Composition of fat in soybeans as affected by duration of germination and drying temperature. J. Food Sci. Technol., 36(3): 266–267.

El-Adawy, T.A., Rahma, E.H., El-Bedawey, A.A. & El-Beltagy, A.E. (2003). Nutritional potential and functional properties of germinated mung bean, pea and lentil seeds. Plant Foods Hum. Nutr., 58(3): 1–13.

Elwood, C. (1971). Feel like a million. Simon and Schuster of Canada Ltd. Richmond Hills, Ontario.

Fordham, J.R., Wells, C.E. & Chen, L.H. (1975). Sprouting of seeds and nutrient composition of seeds and sprouts. J. Food Sci., 40(3): 552–556.

Ghavidel, R.A. & Prakash, J. (2007). The impact of germination and dehulling on nutrients, antinutrients, in vitro iron and calcium bioavailability and in vitro starch and protein digestibility of some legume seeds. LWT Food Sci. Technol., 40(7): 1292–1299.

Giami, S.Y. (2003). Effect of germination on bread-making properties of wheat-fluted pumpkin ( Telfairia occidentalis ) seed flour blends. Plant Foods Hum. Nutr., 58(3): 1–9.

Hahm, T.S., Park, S.J. & Martin Lo, Y. (2009). Effects of germination on chemical composition and functional properties of sesame (Sesamum indicum L.) seeds. Bioresour. Technol., 100(4): 1643–1647.

Ghanem, K.Z. & Hussein, L. (1999). Calcium bioavailability of selected Egyptian foods with emphasis on the impact of fermentation and germination. Int. J. Food Sci. Nutr., 50(5): 351–356.

Kaushik, G., Satya, S. & Naik, S.N. (2010). Effect of domestic processing techniques on the nutritional quality of the soybean. Mediterr. J. Nutr. Metab., 3(1): 39–46.

Kumar, G.K. & Venkataraman, L.V. (1975). Changes in reserve proteins of cowpea, chickpea and green gram during germination: physico-chemical studies. J. Food Sci. and Technol., 12: 292-294.

Megat Rusydi, M.R., Noraliza, C.W., Azrina, A. & Zulkhairi, A. (2016). Nutritional changes in germinated legumes and rice varieties. Int. Food Res. J., 18(2): 705-713.

Manna, K.M., Naing, K.M. & Pe, H. (1995). Amylase Activity of Some Roots and Sprouted Cereals An Beans. Food Nutr. Bull., 16(2): 1–5.

Marero, L.M., Payumo, E.M., Librando, E.C., Lainez, W.N., Gopez, M.D. & Homma, S. (1988). Technology of Weaning Food Formulations Prepared from Germinated Cereals and Legumes. J. Food Sci., 53(5): 1391–1395.

Mikola, M., Brinck, O. & Jones, B.L. (2001). Characterization of Oat Endoproteinases that Hydrolyze Oat Avenins. Cereal Chem., 78(1): 55–58.

Mitchell, D.C., Lawrence, F.R., Hartman, T.J. & Curran, J.M. (2009). Consumption of Dry Beans, Peas, and Lentils Could Improve Diet Quality in the US Population. J. Am. Diet. Assoc., 109(5): 909–913.

Muimui, K.K. (2010). Beans Stakeholder Consultative Workshop. Common wealth Youth Programme, Africa. Lusaka, Zambia, July 21–22.

Platt, B.S. (1956). The soya bean in human nutrition. Chemistry and Industry (London), 32: 834-837.

Pomeranz, Y., Shogren, M.D. & Finney, K.F. (1977). Flour from germinated soybeans in high-protein bread. J. Food Sci., 42(3): 824–827.

Rimsten, L., Haraldsson, A.K., Andersson, R., Alminger, M., Sandberg, A.S. & Åman, P. (2002). Effects of malting on β-glucanase and phytase activity in barley grain. J. Sci. Food Agric., 82(8): 904–912.

Sangronis, E., Rodríguez, M., Cava, R. & Torres, A. (2006). Protein quality of germinated Phaseolus vulgaris. Eur. Food Res. Technol., 222(1): 144–148.

Saunders, R.M., Connor, M.A., Booth, A.N., Bickoff, E.M. & Kohler, G.O. (1973). Measurement of digestibility of alfalfa protein concentrates by in vivo and in vitro methods. J. Nutr., 103(4): 530–535.

Subbulakshmi, G., Kumar, G.K. & Venkataraman, L.V. (1976). Effect of Germination on the Carbohydrates, Proteins, Trypsin Inhibitor, Amylase Inhibitor and Haemagglutinin in Horse Gram and Moth Bean. Nutr. Rep. Int., 13(1): 19-31.

De Tonella, M.L.F. & Berry, J.W. (1987). Characteristics of a Chocolate Beverage from Germinated Chickpeas. J. Food Sci., 52(3): 726–728.

Vanderstoep, J. (1981). Effect of germination on the nutritive value of legumes. Food Technol., 35: 83-85.

Veluppillai, S., Nithyanantharajah, K., Vasantharuba, S., Balakumar, S. & Arasaratnam, V. (2009). Biochemical Changes Associated with Germinating Rice Grains and Germination Improvement. Rice Sci., 16(3): 240–242.

Wang, T.L., Domoney, C., Hedley, C.L., Casey, R. & Grusak, M.A. (2003). Can We Improve the Nutritional Quality of Legume Seeds? Plant Physiol., 131(3): 886–891.

Wai, K.N., Bishop, J.C., Mack, P.B. & Cotton, R.H. (1947). The Vitamin Content of Soybeans and Soybean Sprouts as a Function of Germination Time. Plant Physiol., 22(2): 117–126.

White, H.B. (1958). Fat Utilization and Composition in Germinating Cotton Seeds. Plant Physiol., 33(3): 218–226.

Yang, F., Basu, T.K. & Ooraikul, B. (2001). Studies on germination conditions and antioxidant contents of wheat grain. Int. J. Food Sci. Nutr., 52(4): 319–330.

Yasmin, A., Zeb, A., Khalil, A.W., Paracha, G.M. & Khattak, A.B. (2008). Effect of Processing on Anti-nutritional Factors of Red Kidney Bean (Phaseolus vulgaris ) Grains. Food Bioprocess Technol., 1(4): 415–419.




How to Cite

Malomo, O., Alamu, A. E., & Oluwajoba, S. O. (2013). The effect of Sprouting on the in vitro Digestibility of Maize and Cowpea. Journal of Advanced Laboratory Research in Biology, 4(2), 82–86. Retrieved from