Ascorbic acid and phenolic contents, antioxidant capacity and flavonoids composition of Brazilian Savannah native fruits

Abstract Brazilian Savannah native fruits have been investigated as potential sources of antioxidant substances. Cagaita, cerrado cashew and gabiroba were characterized with regard to the ascorbic acid and phenolic contents, antioxidant capacity and flavonoids composition. Gabiroba presented higher contents of ascorbic acid (61.5 mg.100 g–1), total phenolic compounds (1,222.59 mg GAE.100 g–1), and antioxidant capacity (DPPH, FRAP and ORAC assays) than cagaita and cerrado cashew. The correlation coefficients between total ascorbic acid or total phenolic contents and antioxidant capacity were strong and significant (0.970 ≤ r ≤ 0.998). Quercetin derivatives were found in cagaita (1.94 mg.100 g–1) and myricetin derivatives in cerrado cashew (1.2 mg.100 g–1). Peonidin 3-glucoside was the main anthocyanin in cerrado cashew, and its flavonoids composition was first identified in this study. Gabiroba showed relevant catechin content (23.32 mg.100 g–1). These Brazilian native fruits may be considered as important sources of bioactive compounds, notably gabiroba, since it presents high phenolic contents and antioxidant capacity.