Food Science and Technology (Campinas)
Print version ISSN 0101-2061
COSTA, Paulo Afonso da; BALLUS, Cristiano Augusto; TEIXEIRA FILHO, José and GODOY, Helena Teixeira. Fatty acids profile of pulp and nuts of Brazilian fruits. Ciênc. Tecnol. Aliment. [online]. 2011, vol.31, n.4, pp. 950-954. ISSN 0101-2061. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0101-20612011000400020.
Fruits and nuts from the North and Northeast regions of Brazil were collected to determine the fatty acid profile of their oils. The species studied were Brazil (Bertholletia excelsa H.B.K.), Mucajá (Couma rigida M.), Inajá (Maximiliana maripa D.), Jenipapo (Genipa Americana L.), and Buriti (Mauritia flexuosa L.) nuts. Fatty acid methyl esters were analyzed by gas chromatography with flame ionization detection (GC-FID). Brazil nut major fatty acid was 18:3n-3 (α-linolenic acid), and Buriti nut had approximately 23 times more 18:3n-3 than the pulp. Mucajá nut presented high content of 12:0 (lauric acid) and 16:0 (palmitic acid), and Mucajá pulp showed significant levels of 18:2n-6 (linoleic acid). Considering the PUFA (polyunsaturated fatty acid) sum values, almost all fruits and nuts analyzed presented very high levels of these compounds. Regarding n-6/n-3 ratio, only Brazil Nut, Buriti Nut, Inajá pulp, and Jenipapo pulp corresponded to the desired profile. These Brazilian fruits and nuts could be of potential interest due to their high nutritive value and lipid content.
Keywords : Bertholletia excelsa H.B.K.; Couma rigida M.; Maximiliana maripa D.; Genipa Americana L.; Mauritia flexuosa L.; Fatty acids; GC-FID.