Food Science and Technology (Campinas)
On-line version ISSN 1678-457X
FUJITA, Alexandre H. and FIGUEROA, María O. R.. Nutrient profile and b-glucans content in cereal seeds and foodstuffs contain them. Ciênc. Tecnol. Aliment. [online]. 2003, vol.23, n.2, pp. 116-120. ISSN 1678-457X. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0101-20612003000200003.
The method employed was the enzymatic one recommended by de AOAC for the determination of b-glucans in cereals and in foodstuffs containing cereals in their formulation. The method, using lichenase (EC 18.104.22.168) and b-glucosidase (EC 22.214.171.124) for the hydrolysis of b-glucans, is quick and easy to execute, but is specific for b-glucans with b(1®3) and b(1®4) bonds. The Agronomic Institute of Campinas (IAC) supplied the seeds analyzed, and the foodstuffs were acquired in supermarkets. Oat and barley are the grains with the highest content of b-glucans. In the oats, the determined values were 6.48 and 5.94%. In the 10 cultivars of barley, the content of b-glucans varied between 2.04 and 9.68%. Wheat and triticale had b-glucans contents lower than 1%. Commercial products had contents of b-glucans according to the kind of cereal used in their formulas. The b-glucans are potential functional ingredients, and the convenience or not, of stimulating their incorporation in foodstuffs must be further considered. The protein contents were the most important variation of cereals and that was reflected in foodstuffs too.
Keywords : b-glucans; cereals; oat; barley; composition; soluble fiber; functional foods or ingredients.