Wednesday, December 16, 2020

Antioxidant activity

Antioxidant means "against oxidation”. Antioxidants are compounds capable to either delay or inhibit the oxidation processes which occur under the influence of atmospheric oxygen or reactive oxygen species. They are used for the stabilization of polymeric products, of petrochemicals, foodstuffs, cosmetics and pharmaceuticals.

Antioxidants are considered as important bioactive compounds on account of many health benefits along with their pivotal role in delaying oxidative rancidity of numerous foods. They protect the key cell components by neutralizing the damaging effects of free radicals, which are natural byproducts of cell metabolism

Oxidation reaction depending upon site of occurrences presents specific repercussions. If the site of occurrence is food system, then food deteriorates. When oxidation occurs in biological cell system, it causes damage or death to the cell.

Oxidation is a chemical reaction that transfers electron or hydrogen from substances to an oxidizing agent. Oxidation reactions can produce free radicals. In turn, these radicals can start chain reactions, when the chain reactions occur in a cell, it can cause damage or death to the cell.

The oxidative deterioration of fats and oils, when present as a component in foods, is responsible for rancid odor and flavor with a consequent decrease in nutritional quality, sensory appeal and safety.

This is caused by the formation of primary hydroperoxides and secondary potentially toxic compounds through auto-oxidation of unsaturated fatty acids consisting of a free radical chain mechanism.

Fruit juices, beverages and hot drinks contain high amounts of antioxidants, like polyphenols, vitamin C, vitamin E, Maillard reaction products, β-carotene, and lycopene. The consumption of fruit juices, beverages and hot drinks was found to reduce the morbidity and mortality caused by degenerative diseases.

Various factors which affect the efficiency of antioxidants include activation energy of antioxidants, redox potential stability of pH and processing and stability.
Antioxidant activity

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