Seminario impartido por Marta Martínez, del Instituto de Investigación en Ciencias de la Alimentación (CIAL)

The global food system is currently facing great challenges, motivated by environmental and health-related concerns. The existing food resources are not efficiently exploited, and the unhealthy dietary habits of modern societies are leading to a dramatic increase in the incidence of diet-related chronic diseases. In this context, the food industry is actively working to develop ‘novel’ food products with added health benefits and good nutritional quality. However, to design strategies for a sustainable production of nutritious food products from alternative sources and to predict their potential metabolic responses, it is essential to understand how food structure, digestibility and bioavailability are correlated. Although the digestibility and bioavailability of food products can be estimated through in vitro models, the nanostructural changes taking place during the gastrointestinal digestion process are still not completely understood. This seminar will discuss most relevant findings on the characterization of the multi-scale structure of different novel food systems, such as oil structured systems, hybrid protein-polysaccharide hydrogels and seaweed-based products, and their structural evolution upon simulated gastrointestinal digestions. To this end, complementary characterization tools, including microscopy, spectroscopy, rheology and peptidomics, can be combined with advanced small angle X-ray scattering (SAXS), providing a whole picture of the structural evolution at different length scales. The composition and multi-scale structure of food products can be tuned by processing, consequently having a strong effect on the digestion mechanism. Interestingly, the digestion products can interact with the bile salts present in the intestinal phase, leading to the formation of different types of structures, such as lamellae, micelles and vesicles. Furthermore, the presence of dietary fibres has a major impact not only on the digestibility of other components, but also on the nanostructural assembly of the released digestion products. This is expected to be key to understand the intestinal transport of nutrients and determine the nutritional quality of novel food sources.


Ponente del seminario: Marta Martínez
Fecha del seminario: 24/04/2024 12:00
Lugar del seminario: salón de actos IQF