Bran Antioxidant Shows Promise as a Natural Preservative

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A natural antioxidant in grain bran could one day replace the synthetic substances used to preserve food, keeping it viable for longer and without potentially harmful additives, according to a study conducted at Pennsylvania State University (Penn State).

This research involved a class of compounds called alkylresorcinols, which are produced naturally by plants like wheat, rye, and barley to prevent mold, bacteria, and other organisms from growing on the grain kernels. Alkylresorcinols come from the bran layer of cereal plants, which is often discarded or used for animal feed by the food industry. A review published in European Food Research and Technology suggests that these compounds may have health benefits, potentially making them ideal natural additives.

For the Penn State study, the researchers extracted and purified alkylresorcinols from rye bran and studied how well they preserved omega-3-rich oils. They found that they prevented omega-3 oils from spoiling as quickly as they did without added preservatives, but they weren’t as effective as the synthetic preservatives that were also tested.

Sourced from: Penn State