Vitamin E Stability

February 25/Chemical & Chemistry -- "The stability of vitamin E during 297 days of storage of wheat flour and whole wheat flour ground oil a stone mill or a roller mill, respectively, were studied. One day after milling, the total content of vitamin E expressed in vitamin E equivalents (alpha-TE), was 18.7 alpha-TE and 10.8 alpha-TE for stone-milled and roller-milled wheat flour, respectively," scientists in Frederiksberg, Denmark report.

"The difference in total vitamin E content was primarily due to the absence of the germ and bran fractions in the roller-milled flour. The total loss of vitamin E during storage was 24% for stone-milled wheat flour but 50% for roller-milled wheat flour. These results indicate that vitamin E, which is present in high amounts in wheat germ, functions as an antioxidant in the stone-milled wheat flour. Hexanal formation showed that lipid oxidation in roller-milled flour occurred just after milling, whereas the formation of hexanal in the germ fraction displayed a lack period of 22 days, confirming that vitamin E functions as an effective antioxidant in the wheat germ. Results showed no significant difference in total loss of vitamin E for stone-milled and roller-milled whole wheat flour," wrote M.M. Nielsen and colleagues, University of Copenhagen.

The researchers concluded, "Total loss after 297 days of storage for both milling methods was approximate to 32%."

Nielsen and colleagues published their study in Cereal Chemistry ("Stability of Vitamin E in Wheat Flour and Whole Wheat Flour During Storage." Cereal Chemistry, 2008;85(6):716-720).

For additional information, contact A. Hansen, University of Copenhagen, Faculty Life Science, Dept. of Food Science Qual & Technology, Rolighedsvej 30, DK-1958 Frederiksberg C, Denmark.

From the February 16, 2009, Prepared Foods E-dition