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Food Chem Toxicol. 2006 Oct;44(10):1674-81. Epub 2006 May 19.

Cyclic fatty acid monomer formation in domestic frying of frozen foods in sunflower oil and high oleic acid sunflower oil without oil replenishment.

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Departamento de Nutrición y Bromatología I, Nutrición, Facultad de Farmacia, Universidad Complutense de Madrid, E-28040 Madrid, Spain.


During the frying process, oxidation, hydrolysis, polymerization, isomerization, and cyclization occur. Polymers and Cyclic fatty acid monomers (CFAM) are potentially toxic, and the latter are detected at relatively low levels (0.01-0.7%) in used frying oils. Twenty fryings of different frozen foods were carried out over 10 consecutive days in sunflower oil (SO) and in high oleic acid sunflower oil (HOSO). Fatty acid methyl ester derivates were hydrogenated with platinum oxide catalyst under hydrogen. Ethyl palmitate was added as an internal standard before hydrogenation. The CFAM obtained were isolated, concentrated and quantified by HPLC using a reverse-phase column followed by gas chromatography. Linear adjustments between total and individual CFAM content and the number of frying operations performed with both oils were established by analysis of variance. The comparison between linear equation adjustments of both oils was performed by a two-way analysis of covariance. After 20 fryings 15.4 +/- 0.06 g polar content/100 g oil, 7.15 +/- 0.08 g polymers/ oil, 11.52 +/- 0.08 g polymers/100g oil and 855 +/- 8.9 mg CFAM/kg oil were detected in SO. A 10 mg/100 mg oil of altered fatty acid content correspond to 700 mg/kg CFAM, while 25% polar material and 10% polymer content would correspond to about 850-1,000 mg CFAM/kg oil. Data suggest that frying with SO produces in each new frying 9 mg CFAM/kg more than frying with HOSO (p < 0.001). After frying cyclopentyl structures were more than twice as abundant as cyclohexyl fatty acids in both oils. Bicyclic compound formation was significantly higher in SO (p < 0.001). Because digestion and absorption of polar material, polymers and CFAM occur, data clearly show the advantageousness and advisability of frying with HOSO rather than SO.

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