Dr. Samuel Besong
Dr. Samuel A. Besong, chair of the DSU Department of Human Ecology, is making his mark in the heart disease prevention arena with his published findings that identify purslane leaves as a means of suppressing bad cholesterol in adults.
The DSU associate professor of human ecology, along with Dr. Michael O. Ezekwe, associate professor of agriculture at Alcorn State University, has jointly published findings that purslane contains omega 3 fatty acid – essential nutrients that are vital for preventing the synthesis of bad cholesterol.
Dr. Besong's research on Purslane (above) is contributing to the growing body of evidence that the plant can help prevent heart disease.
“Purslane has soluble fiber and good fat (omega 3), the combination of those two nutrients has a good effect on Cholesterol,” Dr. Besong said. “Lettuce and other plants have good fiber but don’t have the omega 3 fatty acid; that’s what makes purslane unique.”
Dr. Besong, who has been at DSU since 2005, began his heart disease prevention research seven years ago when he was a faculty member of Alcorn State, and continued his joint research work with Dr. Ezekwe after he moved on to DSU.
Their research on the effects of freeze-dried supplements of purslane on heart disease has been published in the International Journal of Nutrition and Metabolism. The research duo is now studying the most effective ways that the plant can be consumed – such as a freeze-dried plant or in pill form – to reduce bad cholesterol.