Altering Functional Properties of Fats Using Power Ultrasound

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Journal of Food Science







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Ultrasound has been used for the last 50 y in different processing applications. Depending on the power and frequency of the sound waves, ultrasound techniques can be classified in different categories. Low-intensity ultrasound uses high frequencies in the range of 100 kHz to 10 MHz and is mostly used for therapeutic purpose (frequencies between 1 and 10 MHz) and to passively monitor the characteristics of materials (frequencies between 100 kHz and 10 MHz). High-intensity ultrasound (HIU), on the other hand, uses lower frequencies in the range of 20 to 100 kHz and it is commonly used for cleaning, disrupting, and restructuring materials. The objective of this study is to evaluate the effect of HIU on functional properties of anhydrous milk fat (AMF), palm kernel oil (PKO), and an all-purpose shortening (Sh). Results from this research shows that HIU induced primary and secondary nucleation in the lipid, generating smaller crystals and as a consequence harder materials. HIU affected hardness more efficiently when applied at higher crystallization temperatures (26 and 28 °C) as shown for AMF data, and when the sonication was applied after the first crystals were formed as observed for PKO and Sh systems. In addition to changes in hardness, AMF and Sh networks obtained after sonication were characterized by a steeper and sharper melting profile. This research shows that HIU can be used as an additional processing tool to tailor the functional properties of lipids with the potential to be used in the processing of trans-free shortenings.


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