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Nutritional, Physicochemical and Structural Parameters of Mauritia flexuosa Fruits and By-Products for Biotechnological Exploration of Sustainable Goods

Joilane Alves Pereira-Freire1*orcid tiny, Jailane de Souza Aquino2orcid tiny, Ana Regina Nascimento Campos3orcid tiny, Vicente Galber Freitas Viana4orcid tiny, Joaquim Soares da Costa Júnior4orcid tiny, Jurandy do Nascimento Silva4,5orcid tiny, Arkellau Kenned Silva Moura6orcid tiny, Antônia Maria das Graças Lopes Citó6orcid tiny, Regilda Saraiva dos Reis Moreira-Araújo7orcid tiny, Karoline de Macêdo Gonçalves Frota7orcid tiny, Stella Regina Arcanjo Medeiros1orcid tiny and Paulo Michel Pinheiro Ferreira5orcid tiny

1Department of Nutrition, Federal University of Piauí, Picos, Brazil

2Department of Nutrition, Federal University of Paraíba, Campus I, João Pessoa, Brazil

3Department of Chemistry, Federal University of Campina Grande, Cuité, Brazil

4Federal Institute of Education, Science and Technology of Piauí, Teresina, Brazil

5Laboratory of Experimental Cancerology (LabCancer), Department of Biophysics and Physiology, Federal University of Piauí, Teresina, Brazil

6Laboratory of Organic Geochemistry, Department of Chemistry, Federal University of Piauí, Teresina, Brazil

7Department of Nutrition, Federal University of Piauí, Teresina, Brazil

Article history:

Received: 20 December 2020

Accepted: 28 March 2022

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fatty acids; phytosterols; rheology; scanning electron microscopy; nutritional composition


Research backgroundCommercialization of Mauritia flexuosa (buriti) fruits in Brazil is at an early stage. Herein, we evaluate the nutritional value of pulp, peel and endocarp samples from buriti fruits, perform macroscopic and microscopic evaluations and analyze their physicochemical properties.

Experimental approach. Size and mass, pH, sugar and protein contents, soluble/insoluble fiber, total titratable acidity and energy value of the samples were analyzed. Mineral profiling was performed by energy dispersive X-ray fluorescence spectrometry, and fatty acids and phytosterols were determined by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. Samples were also submitted to differential scanning calorimetry coupled to a thermal analyzer, and microstructure, morphology, surface and viscosity were evaluated by scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and X-ray diffraction (XRD) with copper radiation. Rheological behavior was also studied. 

Results and conclusionsLyophilized pulp had higher nutritional content of minerals, proteins, carbohydrates and energy than in natura pulp. Lyophilized pulp and its by-products showed suitable yields (>17.31 %) and low aw, and potassium, manganese and monounsaturated fatty acid contents. Peels showed elevated amounts of saturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids and phytosterols (β-sitosterol and stigmasterol), and endothermic behavior. The reductions of calcium, magnesium and manganese ranging from 18.5 to 22.7 % were observed following the lyophilization. Drying processes generated semi-crystalline powders. Both peels and endocarp contained higher amounts of insoluble fiber and lower contents of sugars. Similar results were obtained by microscopic morphological analysis, differential scanning calorimetry and XRD analysis. Pulp and endocarp exhibited pseudoplastic non-Newtonian behavior, and flow behavior index values were lower than 1, while peels presented dilatant behavior. Thus, physicochemical and nutritional characterization of pulp and by-products, such as peels and endocarp, are essential to support scientific research and exploration of new sustainable products. 

Novelty and scientific contribution. Processing and conservation techniques, like lyophilization, maintain the good quality of nutritional contents and bioactive compounds of buriti whole fruits, and can be used to extend their shelf life, preserve alimentary characteristics and provide wider purposes and availability. Such parameters may generate income and food security for local and regional communities.

*Corresponding author: +558632151160

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