Chemical composition, antioxidant properties, and thermal stability of a phytochemical enriched oil from Acai (Euterpe oleracea Mart.).J Agric Food Chem. 2008 Jun 25; 56(12):4631-6.JA
Phenolic compounds present in crude oil extracts from acai fruit (Euterpe oleracea) were identified for the first time. The stability of acai oil that contained three concentrations of phenolics was evaluated under short- and long-term storage for lipid oxidation and phenolic retention impacting antioxidant capacity. Similar to acai fruit itself, acai oil isolates contained phenolic acids such as vanillic acid (1,616 +/- 94 mg/kg), syringic acid (1,073 +/- 62 mg/kg), p-hydroxybenzoic acid (892 +/- 52 mg/kg), protocatechuic acid (630 +/- 36 mg/kg), and ferulic acid (101 +/- 5.9 mg/kg) at highly enriched concentrations in relation to acai pulp as well as (+)-catechin (66.7 +/- 4.8 mg/kg) and numerous procyanidin oligomers (3,102 +/- 130 mg/kg). Phenolic acids experienced up to 16% loss after 10 weeks of storage at 20 or 30 degrees C and up to 33% loss at 40 degrees C. Procyanidin oligomers degraded more extensively (23% at 20 degrees C, 39% at 30 degrees C, and 74% at 40 degrees C), in both high- and low-phenolic acai oils. The hydrophilic antioxidant capacity of acai oil isolates with the highest phenolic concentration was 21.5 +/- 1.7 micromol Trolox equivalents/g, and the total soluble phenolic content was 1252 +/- 11 mg gallic acid equivalents/kg, and each decreased by up to 30 and 40%, respectively, during long-term storage. The short-term heating stability at 150 and 170 degrees C for up to 20 min exhibited only minor losses (<10%) in phenolics and antioxidant capacity. Because of its high phenolic content, the phytochemical-enriched acai oil from acai fruit offers a promising alternative to traditional tropical oils for food, supplements, and cosmetic applications.