Microstructure, composition and their relationship with molecular mobility, food quality and stability

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Food stability is a critical parameter for both consumers and producers, since it assures safety, nutritional, and sensorial quality of foodstuffs, and at the same time maximizes shelf-life. For a long time, water activity, aw, was considered a determinant parameter in food stability and physical properties. This concept was challenged with the revolutionary approach to the study of food systems using the glass transition concept. Recently, scientific research suggests that molecular mobility is a fundamental approach to fully attain food physical properties and stability. Current literature suggests that stability can only be fully grasped if molecular mobility and structure are taken into consideration; that is, an appropriate understanding of the behavior of food products requires knowledge of its composition, structure, and molecular dynamics, through the three-dimensional arrangement of the various structural elements and their interactions. Food systems are complex mixtures of water, biopolymers, low-molecular weight ingredients, and colloid particles, and the molecular mobility between these different components reflects on the stability of such systems, determining the physical state, microstructure, and composition, which impacts food characteristics. Particularly, food water content, location, and interactions with other components are critical in microbial growth, degradation reactions, and sensorial aspects. Understanding changes in water location and mobility represents a significant step in food stability knowledge, once that water availability profoundly affects chemical, physical, and microbiological quality of foods.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationFood microstructure and its relationship with quality and stability
EditorsSakamon Devahastin
PublisherElsevier
Chapter2
Pages29-41
Number of pages13
ISBN (Electronic)9780081007648
ISBN (Print)9780081017661
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2017

Keywords

  • Bioavailability
  • Food stability
  • Microstructure
  • Molecular dynamics
  • Safety
  • Sensorial quality
  • Water availability

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