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The prominent function of thickener in food

Source: Time:2011-05-18 16:47:35 frequency:

        The prominent role of thickener in food is as follows:
(1)Thickening, dispersion and stabilization
        Food thickeners are hydrophilic polymers. It has great viscosity in water, which makes the system thick. When the viscosity increases, the dispersed phase in the system is not easy to aggregate and agglomerate, so it can make the dispersion system stable. Most thickeners have the function of surfactant and can be adsorbed on the surface of dispersed phase, which makes them have certain hydrophilicity and easy to disperse in water system. The molecular weight distribution, concentration, temperature and shear rate of pH value of the thickener all affect the viscosity of the solution.  
        Some thickening agents, such as gelatin, agar and other solutions, are viscous fluids in warm and hot conditions. When the temperature is lowered, the solution molecules are connected into a network structure, and solvents and other dispersed media are all contained in the network structure, and the whole system forms a semi solid solid without mobility, that is, gel. A lot of food processing just uses this characteristic of thickener, such as frozen, milk frozen, etc. Some ionic type water-soluble polymer thickeners, such as sodium alginate, can form gels in the presence of high valent ions, but have nothing to do with temperature. This brings convenience and help to the processing of many characteristic foods.  
(3)Coagulation and clarification
        Most thickeners are polymer materials. Under certain conditions, multiple dispersing media can be adsorbed at the same time to make them aggregate and be separated, so as to achieve the purpose of purification or purification.
(4)Water retaining effect
        Water holding capacity Thickening agent They are all hydrophilic polymers, which have strong water absorption. When they are added to food, they can keep a certain moisture content in the food, so that the product can maintain a good taste. The hydrophilic function of thickener can improve the quality of meat products and flour products. For example, in flour food, thickener can improve the water absorption of dough. When making dough, thickener can accelerate the water penetration to protein molecules and starch particles, which is conducive to the powder mixing process. The thickener can absorb dozens of times or even hundreds of times of its amount of water, and has water retention, which can improve the water absorption of dough and increase the weight of the product.
(5)Controlled crystallization
        The use of thickener can give food higher viscosity, so that many supersaturated solutions or systems do not appear crystallization precipitation or crystal refinement effect. For example, for candy and frozen food, it can improve the expansion, reduce the possibility of ice crystal precipitation, and make the product taste delicate; control the sand returning phenomenon of syrup products, inhibit the ice crystal emergence in ice cream food or the ice crystal refinement generated in the processing process, and contain a large number of tiny bubbles, so that the structure is fine and uniform, the taste is smooth, and the appearance is neat.  
(6)Film forming and preservation
        Food thickener can form a very smooth protective film on the surface of food to protect food from oxygen and microorganism. It can be used together with food surfactant to keep fresh fruits and vegetables, and has polishing effect. It can also prevent the surface moisture absorption of frozen food and solid powder food from reducing the quality 。
(7)Foaming and stabilizing foam action
        Thickener can foam and form network structure. Its solution, like a soap bubble when stirred, can contain a large number of gases and vacuoles, so that the surface viscosity of processed food is increased and the food is stable. When the cake, bread, ice cream, etc. are used as foamers, such as antler alginate, sophora bean gum, alginate and gelatin, thickener can improve the foam volume and foam stability.
(8) Adhesion effect
        The purpose of using sophora bean gum and antler alginate in sausages is to make the product become a agglomerate, after homogenization, the structure is stable and lubricated, and the strong water retention property of the gum is used to prevent sausages from losing weight in storage. Arabic gum can be used as the binder of tablets and granular products in the granulation of powder food, the granulation of food flavors and other uses. (9)Used in the production of health and low heat food
        Many thickeners are natural colloidal macromolecules. It is almost not digested in human body, but excreted through metabolic process. So it is easy to reduce the calorific value of food by using thickener instead of syrup and protein. This method has been used in jam, pulp, seasoning, snacks, biscuits, pudding and other processed foods, and continues to develop in a wider range.  
(10)Masking and slow release
        Some thickeners can absorb and mask the bad smell of some raw materials in order to achieve the effect of deodorization and deodorization. For example, the application of cyclodextrin in deodorization can slow down the volatile aroma and unstable nutrients.

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