Evaluation of Zinc and Magnesium Bioavailability From Pea Sprouts

Evaluation of zinc and magnesium bioavailability from pea (Pisum sativum, L.) sprouts. Effect of illumination and different germination periods

International Journal of Food Science & Technology

Volume 41 Issue 6 Page 618-626, June 2006

Gloria Urbano, María López-Jurado, Carlos Aranda, Antonio Vilchez, Lydia Cabrera, Jesus M. Porres & Pilar Aranda

Departamento de Fisiología, Instituto de Nutrición y Tecnología de Alimentos, Universidad de Granada, Campus Universitario de Cartuja s/n, Granada 18071, Spain


The effect of sprouting pea seeds (Pisum sativum, L) for 2, 4 and 6 days, with and without light, on the content of zinc (Zn) and magnesium (Mg) and their nutritive utilisation by growing rats was studied. Soaking of pea seeds prior to germination caused a 49% reduction in Zn content followed by minor losses during germination. The content of Mg decreased by 6% as a result of the soaking process, and by 20-28% during germination. Sprouting for 2 and 4 days improved the bioavailability of Zn and Mg from pea seeds (from 32.2 to 88.6-108.0 μg retained Zn per day, and from 1.64 to 2.97-4.79 mg retained Mg per day in raw and sprouted pea flour diets, respectively), outweighing the reductions in Zn and Mg content because of seed soaking. The presence or absence of light during the germination process did not affect the results. We conclude that sprouting of peas for 4 days was the most effective treatment to improve the bioavailability of Zn and Mg in pea seeds.