Chapter 5: Physicochemical Properties and Polymorphic Behavior of Tropical Fats: Their Potential and Practical Use in Trans-free Food Systems
Published:07 Feb 2022
M. R. Ramos-Ramos, V. A. Garcia-Londoño, V. Borroni, and M. L. Herrera, in Development of Trans-free Lipid Systems and their Use in Food Products, ed. J. F. Toro-Vazquez, The Royal Society of Chemistry, 2022, ch. 5, pp. 119-138.
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Trans-fat legislation forced the food industry to reformulate its products. Tropical fats are semi-solid edible vegetable fats and natural sources of symmetrical stearic-rich triacylglycerols (TAGS). These fats do not contain trans-fat but have a high percentage of saturated fats. To lower saturated fatty acid content, tropical fats are blended or interesterified with vegetable oils to obtain free trans-fat, low-saturated fat shortenings. These formulations, improved from the nutritional point of view, widen tropical fat applications in margarines, non-dairy creams, shortenings for bakery and frying, chocolate, and confectionery. In this chapter, the physicochemical properties of hydrogenated oils are compared to those of tropical fats, and several successful examples of tropical fat formulations used as trans-fat alternatives are reported.