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Family Cucurbitaceae
Sayote
Sechium edule
CHAYOTE

Yang si gua

Scientific names Common names
Sechium edule (Jacq.) Sw. Sayote (Tag.)
Fu shou gua (Chin.) Tsayote (Most dialects)
  Chayote (Engl.)
  Choyote (Engl.)
  Choko (Engl.)
  Christophine (Engl.)
  Pipinella (Engl.)
  Vegetable pear (Engl.)
  Yang si gua (Chin.)

Other vernacular names
CHOMORRO: Choyote
FRENCH: Chayotte, Chou-chou, Chouchoute, Christofine, Christophine, Mirliton
HAWAIIAN: Pipinola
PERU: Gayota
SAMOAN: Soko.
SPANISH: Chocho, Pipinela, Tallote
TONKAN: Sioka

Botany
Sayote is a tropical perennial vine, with stems climbing to 40 feet high. Rootstock is tuberous. Leaf petioles are 6 inches long. Leaves are hairy, broadly cordate, entire or angled, 10 to 20 centimeters long. Flowers are staminate, yellowish to pale green, in long racemes. Pistillate flowers are solitary, corolla 12 to 17 millimeters. Fruit is pear-shaped, light green, and slightly wrinkled or with shallow, narrow, longitudinal grooves, in some forms set with soft spines. Seed is single, large, with a smooth testa, clinging to the flesh, protruding from the fruit apex.

Distribution
Cultivated
Introduced.
Probably native to Mexico.

Constituents
- Study yielded eight flavonoids including three C-glycosyl and five O-glycosyl flavones. The leaves gave the highest amount of flavonoids

Properties
Antiulcer, laxative.

Parts used
Leaves and fruit.

Uses
Nutritional
- The fruit, tuber, stems and leaves are edible.
- Leaves are used in stews.
- Low in fiber, high in carbohydrate and caloric content.
Folkloric
- Fruit is laxative.
- Raw pulp of the fruit is soothing for skin rashes.
- Roasted leaves help in the suppuration of boils.

Studies
Antioxidant: Leaf ethanolic extracts and leaf and seed water extracts showed strong inhibitory activity by B-carotene bleaching. Results may be potentially exploited as biopreservatives and for health supplements or food to alleviate oxidative stress.
Anti-hypertensive: Extract studies produced a fall in blood pressure. The mechanisms were not determined in the preliminary experiments. Further studies are indicated to delineate the mechanims involved in decreased mean arterial pressure.

Flavonoids: Phytochemical study yielded eight flavonoids, including three C-glycosyl and five o-glycosyl flavones. Results showed the highest amount of flavonoids was in the leaves, followed by roots and by stems.
Antimicrobial: Alcoholic extracts of Sechium edule were tested against bacteria of clinical relevance as nosocomial pathogens. Results showed both fluid extract and tincture have very good antimicrobial efficacy against all strains of multiresistant staphylococci and enterococci and warrants further studies to isolate and identify the active principle/s.
Radiopharmaceutical Labeling and Uptake Effect: The Effect of a Chayotte (Sechium edule) Extracts (Decoct and Macerated) on the Labeling of Blood Elements with Technetium- 9m and on the Biodistribution of the Radiopharmaceutical Sodium Pertechnetate in Mice: an In vitro and In vivo Analysis. The study suggests that some component of chayote extracts present an oxidant power to alter the biodistribution of Technitium-9m and cause alteration of the uptake in organs.
Antiulcer: Treatment with an ethanolic extract of fruit significantly protected against aspirin-induced ulceration with reduction of total acidity, free acidity, gastric output and increase pH of gastric secretion.
Flavonoids: Study yielded eight flavonoids, including three C-glycosyl and five o-glycosyl flavones. Aglycone moieties are represented by apigenin and luteolin; the sugar units by glucose, apiose and rhamnose.

Availability
Cultivated. 


Last Updated October 2012

Photos ©Godofredo Stuart / StuartXchange

Additional Sources and Suggested Readings
(1)
Antioxidant activities of Sechium edule (Jacq.) Swartz extracts / A A L Ordonez et al / Food Chemistry Vol 97, Issue 3, August 2006, Pages 452-458/ doi:10.1016/j.foodchem.2005.05.024
(2)
The antihypertensive effects of the Jamaican Cho-Cho (Sechium edule) / Gordon E A et al / West Indian Med J. 2000 Mar;49(1):27-31
(3)
Study of Flavonoids of Sechium edule (Jacq) Swartz (Cucurbitaceae) Different Edible Organs by Liquid Chromatography Photodiode Array Mass Spectrometry / Tiziana Siciliano et al / J. Agric. Food Chem., 2004, 52 (21), pp 6510–6515 / DOI: 10.1021/jf040214q
(4)
Antimicrobial Activity of Nine Extracts of Sechium edule (Jacq.) Swartz / A A L Ordoñez et al / Microbial Ecology in Health and Disease, Volume 15, Issue 1 January 2003 , pages 33 - 39 / DOI: 10.1080/0891060010015583 /
(5)
The Effect of a Chayotte (Sechium edule) Extracts (Decoct and Macerated) on the Labeling of Blood Elements with Technetium- 9m and on the Biodistribution of the Radiopharmaceutical Sodium Pertechnetate in Mice: an In vitro and In vivo Analysis / Pakistan Journal of Nutrition
Year: 2003 | Volume: 2 | Issue: 4 | Page No.: 221-227 / DOI: 10.3923/pjn.2003.221.227/

(6)
Sechium edule (Jacq.) Sw. / Chinese names /Catalogue of Life, China
(7)
Sechium edule (Jacq.) Sw., Cucurbitaceae / Names and description / PIER
(8)
Anti-Ulcer Activity of Sechium Edule Ethanolic Fruit Extract / Gandhu Sateesh, Syed Fathullah Hussaini, Gone Santhosh Kumar, Bodavula Samba Siva Rao / Pharma Innovation, IC Journal No: 7725, Vol. 1 No. 5 2012


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