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Comparative study of composition and technological quality of amaranth

I. Gross chemical composition, amino acid and mineral content

Acta Alimentaria
Authors: S. Tömösközi, I. Baracskai, R. Schönlechner, E. Berghofer, and R. Läsztity

Eight groups of amaranth grain samples, belonging to the species Amaranthus cruentus and A. hypochondriacus , grown in Austria and Hungary were studied. Gross chemical composition, amino acid content and mineral composition of the whole grain were determined. The effect of heat treatment on amino acid content was also investigated. The range of concentration of main constituents of samples studied corresponded to the average data reported by other researchers. However, the relatively big difference between lowest (14.23%) and highest (17.40%) protein content suggests that genetic potential for increasing the protein content may be realized in breeding. Amino acid composition profile is generally closer to Leguminosae than to cereal grains except for sulphur containing amino acids being present in higher amount in amaranth than in legumes. The concentrations of minerals in seeds varied in a relatively wide range, and the micro-components, like Fe, Cu, Zn, were present in higher amount in amaranth seeds compared to the average values found in wheat. It was confirmed that heat treatment of amaranth grain (e.g. popping) might reduce the available lysine content. Contradictory data published in the literature may be explained by differences in initial sugar and moisture content of grain, which influence the rate of potential Maillard-reaction.

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Acta Alimentaria
Authors: A. Bagdi, G. Balázs, J. Schmidt, M. Szatmári, R. Schoenlechner, E. Berghofer, and S. Tömösközia

Six varieties of proso millet (Panicum miliaceum L.) and two commercially available millets were investigated in the present study. In order to explore the nutritional potential, major nutrient composition, mineral composition, antioxidant capacity, total phenols content (related to the antioxidant capacity) and dietary fibre content were determined. The effects of decortication on these components were examined. In addition, protein profile of the varieties and amylose/amylopectin ratio of the starch were examined. The range of the values measured for major nutrient composition corresponds with data of other millet species published in earlier studies. Remarkable differences were found among the protein contents of the varieties (11.58–14.80%). Although the concentration of minerals was low in the varieties examined, in comparison with other cereals wholegrain millet seems to be nutritionally valuable because of their high dietary fibre content. Decortication had no effect on the protein and fat content of millets, however, it significantly decreased the content of crude fibre, dietary fibre, minerals, total phenols content and antioxidant capacity. Consequently the applicability of millets as functional food decreases. Decortication had no effect on the amylose/amylopectin ratio of millet. No varietal differences were found in terms of protein characteristics.

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