Friday, October 7, 2022

Making butter-like spreads more healthy

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Researchers are changing saturated fats with sunflower, rice bran, candelilla and different pure waxes to create more healthy margarines and spreads for shoppers. Credit: Functional Foods Research Unit

A dollop of margarine or unfold can go a protracted option to livening up a slice of toast, a piping scorching ear of corn or different meals. But that enhanced taste may also include a facet serving to of fear over consuming saturated fat, that are used as solidifying brokers in some margarines and spreads and provides them their butter-like properties.

Jill Moser and Hong-Sik Hwang, analysis chemists with the Agricultural Research Service (ARS) in Peoria, Illinois, wish to create a more healthy product by changing these fat with plant-based and different pure waxes—sunflower, rice bran, candelilla and beeswax, amongst them. They do that by melting the waxes in scorching vegetable oil and letting it cool to room temperature. This ends in a semi-solid substance known as an oleogel. When blended with water, salt and different elements, the oleogel mimics the function of saturated fats in producing a margarine, unfold or shortening that has the specified firmness, mouthfeel, melting level, shelf-life and different properties, together with when utilized in baked items.

Artificial trans fat (these not naturally current in meat and dairy merchandise however reasonably created through a chemical course of known as partial hydrogenation) have been as soon as the favored selection for making margarines, spreads and shortening. However, synthetic trans fat have been phased out of use in 2021 over issues their consumption can enhance the danger of coronary heart illness and stroke. Saturated fat with out a trans construction, equivalent to from palm oil and totally hydrogenated vegetable oil, are among the many replacements now used to make margarine, spreads and shortening. Consumers, although, are suggested to restrict their consumption of saturated fat from meals or drinks that comprise them.

Using wax-based oleogels, “we think 100% of the saturated fats can be replaced, including saturated fat in palm oil and fully hydrogenated vegetable oil,” mentioned Hwang, who, along with Moser, is positioned on the ARS middle’s Functional Foods Research Unit in Peoria.

The wax-based oleogels are product of a community of plate-like crystals that immobilize molecules of oil in a gel state that mimics the perform of stable saturated fats in margarines and spreads—minus the related human-health issues.

To date, the researchers have created oleogel formulations from 4 completely different pure waxes and 12 completely different sorts of vegetable oils, together with soy and, most lately, hemp seed oil, which is wealthy in helpful polyunsaturated fat and antioxidants, together with Vitamin E. Their newest analysis is revealed within the Journal of the American Oil Chemists’ Society.

Of the waxes they’ve labored with, sunflower and rice bran appear to work greatest in creating margarines and spreads that evaluate to these constructed from totally hydrogenated (saturated) vegetable oil. Very little wax is required, too. In one experiment, between 2 and 6% of sunflower wax was wanted to create an oleogel that was practically as agency as margarine containing 18 to 30% of saturated soy oil.

Oleogel elements can come from a wide range of sources, however these derived from plant waxes are particularly of curiosity as a result of they’re “generally recognized as safe” by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and are considerable and cheap. Sunflower waxes, for instance, are waste merchandise generated from refinery procedures used to take away impurities from crude oil within the flowering crop’s seed. Similarly, rice bran waxes are waste byproducts of husk-oil refining strategies.

The researchers proceed to refine the oleogel formulations, for instance, by mixing completely different waxes with oils to realize the perfect mixture of properties anticipated in a margarine or unfold. Their efforts and collaboration with business are half of a bigger analysis effort on the ARS middle to usher in new, value-added makes use of for each established crops equivalent to corn and soybeans and newer ones equivalent to penny cress and hemp that may profit producers and shoppers alike.


Butter or margarine? The latest round in a long-running debate


More info:
Hong‐Sik Hwang et al, Feasibility of hemp seed oil oleogels structured with pure wax as stable fats substitute in margarine, Journal of the American Oil Chemists’ Society (2022). DOI: 10.1002/aocs.12619

Jill Okay. Winkler‐Moser et al, Physical Properties of Beeswax, Sunflower Wax, and Candelilla Wax Mixtures and Oleogels, Journal of the American Oil Chemists’ Society (2019). DOI: 10.1002/aocs.12280

Provided by
United States Department of Agriculture


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Making butter-like spreads more healthy (2022, September 22)
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