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J Sci Food Agric. 2011 Feb;91(3):563-71. doi: 10.1002/jsfa.4222. Epub 2010 Dec 13.

Characterization of Brazilian lager and brown ale beers based on color, phenolic compounds, and antioxidant activity using chemometrics.

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Department of Food and Experimental Nutrition, Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, University of São Paulo, Av. Prof. Lineu Prestes, 580, B14, 05508-000, São Paulo, São Paulo, Brazil.



Epidemiological studies have shown that beer has positive effects on inhibiting atherosclerosis, decreasing the content of serum low-density lipoprotein cholesterol and triglycerides, by acting as in vivo free radical scavenger. In this research, the antioxidant activity of commercial Brazilian beers (n = 29) was determined by the oxygen radical absorbance capacity (ORAC) and 1,1-diphenyl-2-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH(·) ) assays and results were analyzed by chemometrics.


The brown ale samples (n = 11) presented higher (P < 0.05) flavonoids (124.01 mg L(-1) ), total phenolics (362.22 mg L(-1) ), non-flavonoid phenolics (238.21 mg L(-1) ), lightness (69.48), redness (35.75), yellowness (55.71), color intensity (66.86), hue angle (59.14), color saturation (0.9620), DPPH(·) values (30.96% inhibition), and ORAC values (3, 659.36 µmol Trolox equivalents L(-1) ), compared to lager samples (n = 18). Brown ale beers presented higher antioxidant properties (P < 0.05) measured by ORAC (1.93 times higher) and DPPH (1.65 times higher) compared to lager beer. ORAC values correlated well with the content of flavonoids (r = 0.47; P = 0.01), total phenolic compounds (r = 0.44; P < 0.01) and DPPH (r = 0.67; P < 0.01). DPPH values also correlated well to the content of flavonoids (r = 0.69; P < 0.01), total phenolic compounds (r = 0.60; P < 0.01), and non-flavonoid compounds (r = 0.46; P = 0.01).


The results suggest that brown ale beers, and less significantly lager beers, could be sources of bioactive compounds with suitable free radical scavenging properties.

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