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Add Banana Pasta to Gluten-free Menu

Tuesday, 26 June 2012 01:51 PM

Food scientists from Brazil have developed a gluten-free pasta made from green banana flour that tasters found more acceptable than regular whole wheat pasta. The product, which has less fat and is cheaper to produce than standard pastas, could greatly expand the limited food choices for people with celiac disease.
Researchers from the University of Brazil, writing in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, said most of 75 people who participated in taste tests could not tell the difference between the new banana-based pasta and standard wheat-based products.
"There was no significant difference between the modified pasta and standard samples in terms of appearance, aroma, flavor, and overall quality," said lead researcher Renata Puppin Zandonadi, a nutritionist with the University of Brazil. "Green bananas are considered a sub-product of low commercial value with little industrial use. For banana growers and pasta product makers, there is the possibility of diversifying and expanding their market."
Researchers noted people with celiac disease struggle with limited food choices because they are unable to tolerate gluten, found in wheat and other grains.
They created the new pasta -- made from green banana flour, egg whites, water, and gums – as an alternative to standard products containing whole wheat flour and eggs. In creating the banana pasta, they also reduced the fat content (by 98 percent) and increased the protein levels to compensate for the fact that gluten removal typically reduces some proteins. Adding egg whites and gum give the pasta a less-sticky quality than typical gluten-free pastas, and promote firmness, elasticity, moisture, and uniformity, they said.
Fifty testers who did not have celiac disease and 25 celiac disease patients compared the new and traditional pastas. In both groups, the modified pasta was deemed as good or better than the standard in aroma, flavor, texture, and overall quality, indicating it could appeal to a wider market than just those with celiac disease.
The modified pasta had a high quantity of resistant starch, which may help control blood sugar, cholesterol, intestinal regularity, and fermentation by intestinal bacteria.

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Food scientists have developed a gluten-free pasta made from green banana flour.
Tuesday, 26 June 2012 01:51 PM
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