Tuesday, December 22, 2009


The importance of fiber in the diet cannot be over emphasized. Though in the strict sense it is not a assimilable nutrient, dietary fiber plays an important role in maintaining good health for a normal individual. Besides being a prebiotic which is used by the intestinal microbes to produce a few nutrients of importance to the body, dietary fiber is also involved in controlling serum cholesterol significantly. The importance of Oats arises because it contains soluble and insoluble fibers beneficial for the body. There are many other sources of dietary fiber which include whole food grains, fruits and vegetables. Recommended level of fiber intake is 25-30 gm a day for a healthy person.

Apple pomace which is a by-product in processing industry contains the peel and the fibrous fractions with no economic value. "Incorporating an apple skin powder, an under-utilised food-processing by-product, in bakery products could boost the fiber-content of the product, says new research. Replacing flour in muffins with 24 per cent of a dried apple skin powder could boost the fiber content of the product without detrimentally affecting the sensory profile of the product, according to findings published in the Journal of Food Quality".

Why the study has focused on apple peel, leaving the pectin rich pomace, is not clear because pectin, considered a soluble fiber has several beneficial effects in humans. More over, separating apple skin from the pressed residue of apple juice industry cannot be easily achieved. It is understandable that incorporation of the fibrous fraction in baked goods could boost up the dietary fiber level in the final product as it is not destroyed at the baking temperatures but it can affect the raising properties of bread dough to some extent due to dilution of gluten content.


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