Carotenoid and retinol composition of South Asian foods commonly consumed in the UK

Santosh Khokhar*, Mark Roe, Gillian Swan

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


The main aim of this study was to provide new and reliable food composition data on carotenoids and retinol in South Asian Foods for the United Kingdom's national database. A total of 38 commonly consumed foods were analysed using HPLC and accredited methods of analyses. Palak paneer (spinach and soft Indian cheese) contained the highest levels of β-carotene (4066 μg/100. g) followed by gajjeralla (carrot based sweet, 2324 μg/100. g) and saag (mixed green leafy vegetables), which contained 1514 μg/100. g, whilst retinol was present in only a few foods, with ghee being the major source (968 μg/100. g). Meat dishes contained higher amounts of lycopene (up to 1140 μg/100. g in chicken balti) than vegetable or dhal dishes (highest in palak paneer 317 μg/100. g), because of larger quantities of tomatoes used in meat curries. A variety of ethnic vegetables (green leafy vegetables and other coloured vegetables), namely legumes/dhal, tomatoes and coriander, were identified to be the major ingredients containing carotenoids. These new data can be used in future diet and nutrition surveys, as well as to identify carotenoid-rich foods for dietary programs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)166-172
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Food Composition and Analysis
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2012
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was funded by Food Standards Agency, UK (Project N10038 ) and was carried out in collaboration with EuroFIR Network of Excellence Consortium (funded under the FP6 “ Food Quality and Safety Programme ”, contract No. FP6-513944 ). The authors would like to acknowledge the specific input of Eurofins Laboratories Ltd. And LGC Ltd., UK for analysis; Isabel Castanheira, National Institute of Health, Lisbon, Portugal for uncertainty measurement; and Christina Moyle and Penelope Gilbert for sampling.


  • β-Carotene
  • Carotenoids
  • Cryptoxanthin
  • Food analysis
  • Food composition
  • Food composition databank
  • Food data management
  • Lutein
  • Lycopene
  • Retinol
  • South asian foods and indian foods
  • Zeaxanthin


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