Saturday, March 17, 2018

Amines in food

Many of the antioxidants used in commerce occur naturally in foods (e.g., vitamin C, citric acid, amines, and certain phenolics compounds). However, the amines and the phenolics compounds can be toxic to human in low concentrations; therefore, they and the synthetic antioxidants required strict regulations of their use in foods.

The amines are an extensive class of organic compounds of general formula RNHi (primary), RR'NH (secondary), and RR'R"N (tertiary). Their chemical and chromatographic properties are determined by the presence of a basic functional group and active hydrogen atoms in the molecule. Amines occur widely as constituents or additives in foods.

Nitrosamines are formed by the reaction of nitrites with secondary amines. The amines are common, naturally occurring component of many foods. Nitrite is a food additive use in the curing of meats, but majority of nitrite entering the gastrointestinal tract arises from other sources, such as water, plants, nitrogen oxides in polluted air and open flames used in some types of food processing and saliva.

Large amounts of amines are present in cheese, chocolate, wines, beer; yeast extracts and fish products. They are also present in certain fruits and vegetables and the levels increase as the fruits ripens.
Amines in food
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