Seasonal Variety of Selected Indigenous Plant Raw Materials and Foodstuffs Avaiable for Consumption in Namibia – A Review
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traditional foods, crops, nutrients, Africa, bioactive compounds

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Namukwambi , F. K., Chimwamurombe , P. M., Aboua , Y. ., Grygorieva, O. ., & Ivanišová, E. (2023). Seasonal Variety of Selected Indigenous Plant Raw Materials and Foodstuffs Avaiable for Consumption in Namibia – A Review. Agrobiodiversity for Improving Nutrition, Health and Life Quality, 7(2). Retrieved from


This review is based on the nutritional content of the available indigenous foods to identify area of future research. Most indigenous foods are affordable and has good source of micronutrients, but the consumption rate of these foods is declining. It is important to increase awareness of the need to consume indigenous foods to reduce food insecurity and malnutrition. Most indigenous foods are seasonal and range from cereal-based foods to beverage drinks. In Namibia, the most important part of the human diet are pearl millet, sorghum, and maize. These crops mostly are rich in complex carbohydrates (starch), protein, mineral compounds (potassium, calcium, iron and zinc), vitamins and polyphenols. From legumes crops are widely used cowpeas, groundnut and marama beans. Most legumes are a good source of protein, starch, dietary fibre, fats, and micronutrients. Legumes with high sources of protein can be used as meat alternatives, which is very actual and attractive in the food industry. Fruits and plant-based foods are very common in Nigeria are monkey oranges, marula fruits, bird plums, jackal berries, makalani palm, manketti and water lilies, tiger nuts, and roselle. These fruits contain carbohydrates, proteins and some micronutrients. Indigenous fruits have the potential to be used in medicine for treating diseases due to the high level of bioactive compounds, especially antioxidants. Some plants like roselle (Hibiscus sabdariffa L.) have the potential to control diseases like type 2 diabetes and hypertension. Most vegetables used in Namibia provide nutrients such as beta-carotene, ascorbic acid, mineral compounds (iron and calcium) protein, and phytochemicals. Traditional fermented beverages – oshikundu, omagongo, oshinwa, and mutete juice and known to provide a wide range of nutrients including vitamins A, C, B12, iron, and calcium. Based on this review, we recommend sustainable promotion of these foods and regular consumption of indigenous foods as a solution to malnutrition. There is a great potential to grow indigenous foods in community nurseries and home gardens to increase the availability.

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