Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Olive oil and phenolic compounds

Phenolic compounds are often described as effective antioxidants. These compounds have a great importance for several characteristics of the olive oil, such as flavor, shelf-life and resistance against oxidation.

The class of phenols present in olive oils encompasses a large number of different substances such as vanillic acid, caffeic acid, hydroxytyrosol, tyrosol, oleuropein, ligstroside, gallic acid, coumaric acid and flavonoids.

In olive oils the bitter taste is due to phenolic compounds and cinnamic acid, while the pungency is due to oleuropein.

The amount of phenolic compounds in olive oils cultivars varies from 150 to 700 ppm and is affected by various factors such as cultivar, degree of maturation, climatic conditions and pest damage to fruit. Green olives oil in phenolic content and with a more aromatic and fruity flavor.

Oleuropein is the major phenolic in olive fruits. Oleuropein underwent significant changes in its concentration during fruit development.

Oleuropein has been shown to be responsible for the high resistance, robustness and good immune function of the olive tree. In it original, unaltered form, this substance lowers, blood pressure, dilates blood vessels, and protects against heart rhythm disturbances.

Olive oil and phenolic compounds
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