Bioavailability of carotenoids incorporated into processed foods: bread and mayonnaise
Fort Zaragoza, Mariona
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This project involved the analysis of samples from the CAROTFood study, which is investigating the bioavailability of carotenoids that have been incorporated into processed foods (bread and mayonnaise). The volunteers in the study, judged to be healthy, returned for four stand-‐alone test sessions where they consumed one of four treatment breakfasts (treatment 1: plain bread with plain mayonnaise; treatment 2: plain bread with vegetable mayonnaise; treatment 3: vegetable bread with plain mayonnaise; treatment 4: vegetable bread). Following the breakfast, hourly blood samples are taken for the subsequent 8 hours and after 24 hours for measuring carotenoid concentration (lutein/zeaxanthin, lycopene, β-‐ cryptoxanthin, β-‐carotene and α-‐carotene). The analysis of carotenoids in blood was carried out on two of its components: the amount of free carotenoids in plasma and the carotenoid concentrations in the chylomicron-‐rich fraction of plasma. The data obtained in this study clearly show that consuming carotenoids with mayonnaise increases their absorption. Furthermore incorporating the carotenoids in processed food could be an alternative to raise the consumption of this pigment in the UK. As the sample size analysed for the purposes of this thesis was small the carotenoid contents in the plasma and chylomicrons were not significantly different between the four treatments (p>0.05). Even so the study suggested that the presence of fat in an emulsified form enhances the absorption of carotenoids.
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