The Wasted Fractions of Pequi Fruit are Rich Sources of Dietary Fibers and Phenolic Compounds

  •  Aline M. Alves-Santos    
  •  Paula Gusmao M. Costa    
  •  Nara Rubia R. Nascimento-Silva    
  •  Cecilia Maria A. Oliveira    
  •  Ana Paula Terezan    
  •  Aline Priscilla G. Silva    
  •  Maria Margareth V. Naves    


Considering the scarcity of studies on the nutrients and phenolic compounds in the wasted fractions of the pequi (Caryocar brasiliense Camb.) fruit processing, this study investigated the proximate composition, identified the phenolic compounds, and quantified the gallic and ellagic acids in the shell (peel and external mesocarp), and in the external mesocarp of pequi. The shell and the external mesocarp of the pequi fruit presented high concentrations of total dietary fibers, soluble fibers and phenolic compounds, mostly the freeze-dried pequi shell, which showed approximately 50% total dietary fibers, 20% soluble dietary fibers and 10% polyphenols, with remarkable antioxidant capacity. The phenolics identified in the pequi shell and external mesocarp were gallic acid, ellagic acid, and quercetin. In addition, protocatechuic acid, catechin, p-coumaric acid, and luteolin were identified for the first time in the pequi by-products. The freeze-dried pequi shell showed twice the gallic and ellagic acids concentrations compared to those of the external mesocarp. The wasted by-products of pequi, especially the pequi shell, are rich in healthy phytochemicals with the potential to be used by the food and pharmaceutical industries as ingredients in functional plant-based products or nutraceuticals.

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