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Antioxidants from blueberries and persimmons

Feeding the growing world population sustainably is no simple task. To this end, scientists are exploring options for converting by-products and waste of fruits and vegetables, such as peels and pulps created during food processing, into nutritious food components and even food additives

Blueberries. From jumpstory
Blueberries. From jumpstory

[Translation by Dr. Moshe Nachmani]

The findings of the new study, published a long time ago in the scientific journal Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, showed that waste from blueberries and persimmons can be converted into powders rich in antioxidants that have beneficial effects on intestinal bacteria.

In recent years, fruit and vegetable powders have become popular products as beneficial compounds, such as polyphenols and carotenoids (red or yellow pigments found in plants and herbs), two families of antioxidants, or as ingredients in food products. However, in many cases these beneficial compounds are found in similar and even higher concentrations in the by-products compared to other parts of the fruit or vegetables. The researchers sought to prepare powders from persimmon and blueberry waste, and then examine how their digestion could affect the release of antioxidants and other active compounds. The researchers also sought to determine the effects of the digestible powders on the population of intestinal bacteria.

The researchers obtained powders from the peels of the persimmon fruit and its flower parts, and from the solids remaining after the preparation of blueberry juice. The type of powder, the drying method by which it was obtained, the fiber content and the type of fiber determined the identity of the antioxidant substances released during digestion. For example, freeze-drying resulted in the preservation of a large amount of the anthocyanin family of substances (the pigments that give different parts of the plant their red color), but these substances broke down more easily during digestion than air-dried samples. In the next step, the research team added the powders to a fecal mixture and performed fermentation while genetically sequencing the bacteria before and after the process. Incubation with the fruit powders caused the growth of different types of beneficial bacteria, and certain strains of the bacteria thrived better in the presence of one of the powders compared to other strains. The findings indicate that powders from persimmon and blueberry waste could be incorporated into food recipes in order to increase the amount of antioxidants in them, substances that could have a positive effect on human health, according to the researchers.
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One response

  1. With all due respect to the scientists who develop these processes
    This is a foolish behavior.
    Because persimmons and blueberries are delicious fruits
    It is possible and correct to eat them whole,
    Squeeze and peel to create waste and then look for something to do
    If the waste is scum,
    It may be appropriate to do this in fruit clips but
    Not in fruits and vegetables that can be eaten whole

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