Reduction of saturated fats

Trans fats have been banned more and more. Since then more attention is asked for lowering the saturated fat intake; below 10en% of the total diet.
Taking out the trans fats was already difficult, but to lower the saturated fatty acids in foods will be the newest challenge for food manufacturers. It should be realized that an appropriate fat will usually be a mixture of fat component(s) and liquid oil.

If a hard fat in a certain application is necessary trisaturated or disaturated-monounsaturated triglycerides are required; actually triglycerides of the type H3, H2M and H2U should be present. The saturated fat in the form of HU2 is less effective and functional; so should be abandoned as much as possible.
As fat modification tools can be applied: fractionation, interesterification and possibly total hydrogenation.

Saturated fatty acids in triglycerides are required to obtain a certain level of solids and so hardness. So the saturated fatty acids, present in a fat or a fat blend should be used as effective as possible.
An effectivity factor for the saturated part to the solids level at 20C (N20) in a hard fat (component) can be calculated. But steepness of a fat should also be defined. N20 of a fat component should be preferably high but N35 should be as low as possible in most applications.

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Copyright 2002 Gabrie Lansbergen Fats for Foods Consultant

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