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How Much Zeaxanthin is in Goji Berries?

The amount of zeaxanthin determined to be in goji berries varies from one study to another.

A 2017 study published in Italian Journal of Food Science found 3,448 mcg of zeaxanthin per single gram of goji berries [1], as follows:

Zeaxanthin in dried goji berries [2]
1860 mcg/g of saponified zeaxanthin (186.0 mg/100 g)
1588 mcg/g of unsaponified zeaxanthin (158.8 mg/100 g)
Total: 3448 mcg zeaxanthin per single gram

The same study also found other carotenoids in dried goji berries [2]
57.0 mcg/g of lutein in dried goji berries (5.7 mg/100 g)
61.0 mcg/g of beta-cryptoxanthin (6.1 mg/100 g)
10.0 mcg/g of beta-carotene (1.0 mg/100 g)

Thus, goji berries are a superior source of zeaxanthin and a minor source of a few other carotenoids.

A 2011 study published in Food Research International found 1,143.7 mcg of zeaxanthin dipalmitate per single gram of goji berries, plus 11.3 – 62.8 mcg/g of zeaxanthin monopalmitate and its two isomers, for a total of 1,155 mcg/g of goji berries. [2]

A 2014 study published in Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry found that “the amounts of zeaxanthin dipalmitate vary from 28 to 54 mg/10 g” in goji berries. That translates to 2,800 to 5,400 mcg of zeaxanthin per single gram of berries. [3]

Few persons realize that goji berries are also available in a black variety. However, black Goji berries have very low carotenoid content. [4] They are good sources of antioxidants, but contain few carotenoids.

— Ronald L. Conte Jr.

[1] Niro, Serena, et al. “Nutritional evaluation of fresh and dried goji berries cultivated in Italy.” Italian Journal of Food Science 29.3 (2017), Table 4;
http://chiriottieditori.it/ojs/index.php/ijfs/article/download/649/329

[2] Amagase, Harunobu, and Norman R. Farnsworth. “A review of botanical characteristics, phytochemistry, clinical relevance in efficacy and safety of Lycium barbarum fruit (Goji).” Food Research International 44.7 (2011): 1702-1717.
https://herbscientist.com/herb-research/2011-A-review-of-botanical-characteristics-phytochemistry-clinical-relevance-in-ef%EF%AC%81cacy-of-Goji.pdf

[3] Karioti, Anastasia, et al. “Validated method for the analysis of goji berry, a rich source of zeaxanthin dipalmitate.” Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry 62.52 (2014): 12529-12535.
http://www.biofattorietoscane.it/public/paper-65-goji-berry.pdf

[4] Islam, Tahidul, et al. “Comparative studies on phenolic profiles, antioxidant capacities and carotenoid contents of red goji berry (Lycium barbarum) and black goji berry (Lycium ruthenicum).” Chemistry Central Journal 11.1 (2017): 59.
https://bmcchem.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s13065-017-0287-z

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