The popularity of amaranth products, food products derived from this plant, is increasing worldwide. In particular, the market for amaranth gluten-free products has almost doubled over the past few years, as we wrote in detail in one of our previous articles, “Gluten-free products are the most developing segment of the bread market”.
However, amaranth supplements are used in other types of products. For example, when creating new prophylactic food products to enhance the protective functions of the body and reduce the influence of harmful environmental factors.
It was the goal of searching for new technologies and new types of food that were pursued several years ago by employees of the Kuban State Technological University N.A. Shmalko, I.I. Uvarova, Yu.F. Roslyakov, who prepared scientific material on how amaranth flour can act as an antioxidant additive for pasta.
After all, for many years, natural antioxidants, among which beta-carotene stands out, have taken a leading place among various biologically active substances.
What is beta-carotene and what is its feature
Beta-carotene is a provitamin A. It is the most important functional ingredient. Therefore, it is indispensable in the diet of beta-carotene preventive nutrition. Because of its special properties – beta-carotene significantly slows down the oxidation of fatty acids, which are part of the lipids, thereby destroying the already existing fatty acid peroxide.
The daily human need for vitamin A is 1-2.5 mg. The need for vitamin A increases in certain situations. In particular, more than the specified daily intake of vitamin A is necessary:
- during pregnancy;
- during lactation and breastfeeding;
- with various bowel ailments;
- in diseases of the pancreas;
- in various diseases of the liver and biliary tract.
In recent years, the release of water-soluble forms of beta-carotene, which are used in food production. In particular, it is indicated that water-soluble forms of beta-carotene provide a stable color food, which is able to persist for a long time.
Beta carotene and pasta
It has been established that macaroni, which is used in the production of water-soluble forms of beta-carotene, loses its color too quickly during storage. To avoid this, it is necessary to prevent the oxidation of carotene upon contact with air.
Also in the course of research, it was found that the use of beta-carotene oil solution allows not only to significantly strengthen the gluten of pasta dough, but also to strengthen the gluten of pasta dough, to achieve a reduction in the amount of dry substances that will pass into the cooking water.
But here the next problem arises – when mixing such dough, beta-carotene in large volumes just begins to break down, and its presence in pasta after two months of storage of the product decreases by 85%!
The destruction of beta-carotene due to the fact that it is oxidized upon contact with oxygen. And in general – this substance is unstable, since its molecules contain a system of conjugated double bonds. As soon as such a system is disturbed, the beta-carotene color loss process is activated.
Soy Lecithin and Ascorbic Acid
Earlier in this area, various studies were conducted. In particular, it was about the possible use of soy lecithin and ascorbic acid to prevent the destruction of beta-carotene during the storage of pasta.
Thus, it was found that the addition of 0.3% soy lecithin and 0.01% ascorbic acid made it possible to increase the retention period of beta-carotene. And not only in the process of kneading dough, but also during its pressing, as well as drying the products.
Amaranth flour in the manufacture of pasta products
However, it was established, and also scientifically grounded, the expediency of using products of processing of amaranth in the production of macaroni and amaranth flour.
In particular, we are talking about amaranth flour, which is used in the production of pasta, enriched with beta-carotene, as an antioxidant additive. The choice of amaranth flour, as such an additive, is due to the fact that vitamin E is present in elevated quantities of seed E — it is almost the best natural antioxidant.
During the research, a special drug was chosen as a source of beta-carotene – Caroline. It is an oil solution of carotene. Its concentration is 0.9 mg per milliliter.
But directly for the manufacture of pasta used wheat flour obtained from durum wheat.
In the production of pasta, amaranth flour in the total share of wheat flour was not more than 7%. Also added the drug Caroline. Dough kneading lasted from ten to twenty minutes, depending on what kind of flour was used.
To find out exactly how the amount of beta-carotene in pasta changed during storage, a special technique was used. It involves the use of simple, simple equipment, but allows you to get the most accurate results – the error in the results does not exceed 2%.
What results have been achieved
During the research, scientists obtained data proving that the use of amaranth flour makes it possible to achieve the safety of beta-carotene in pasta. At the same time, at the end of the storage period (it was 60 days), it was found that there are two times more own carotenoids in products with the addition of beta-carotene than during control studies.
Other results were also obtained, which prove that it really makes sense to use flour from amaranth in the production of pasta as an antioxidant additive.
Conclusions from the study of beta-carotene in pasta
During the research it was found that it makes sense to use amaranth flour obtained by processing the grains of this plant in order to achieve a higher level of preservation in pasta and pasta products, both of its own carotenoids, and beta-carotene artificially. In this case we are talking about the introduction of the drug Caroline.
In addition, it makes sense to also use amaranth flour, as an antioxidant additive in pasta, which was additionally enriched with an oil solution of beta-carotene.
All these data will help pasta producers to significantly improve the quality of their products and get new types of pasta.