Impact of dietary fibers [methyl cellulose, chitosan, and pectin] on digestion of lipids under simulated gastrointestinal conditions
A simulated in vitro digestion model was used to elucidate the impact of dietary fibers on the digestion rate of emulsified lipids. The influence of polysaccharide type (chitosan (cationic), methyl cellulose (non-ionic), and pectin (anionic)) and initial concentration (0.4 to 3.6% (w/w)) was examined. 2% (w/w) corn oil-in-water emulsions stabilized by 0.2% (w/w) Tween-80 were prepared, mixed with polysaccharide, and then subjected to an in vitro digestion model (37 °C): initial (pH 7.0); oral (pH 6.8; 10 min); gastric (pH 2.5; 120 min); and, intestinal (pH 7.0; 120 min) phases. The impact of polysaccharides on lipid digestion, ζ-potential, particle size, viscosity, and stability was determined. The rate and extent of lipid digestion decreased with increasing pectin, methyl cellulose, and chitosan concentrations. The free fatty acids released after 120 min of lipase digestion were 46, 63, and 81% (w/w) for methyl cellulose, pectin, and chitosan, respectively (3.6% (w/w) initial polysaccharide), indicating that methyl cellulose had the highest capacity to inhibit lipid digestion, followed by pectin, and then chitosan. The impact of the polysaccharides on lipid digestion was attributed to their ability to induce droplet flocculation, and/or due to their interactions with molecular species involved in lipid hydrolysis, such as bile salts, fatty acids, and calcium. These results have important implications for understanding the influence of dietary fibers on lipid digestion. The control of lipid digestibility within the gastrointestinal tract might be important for the development of reduced-calorie emulsion-based functional food products.