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Article
Publication date: 3 March 2020

Toby Le and Sharareh Hekmat

This study aims to determine the probiotic potential of Lactobacillus rhamnosus GR-1 from Fiti sachets, in four widely consumed pulses, namely, black-eyed pea, pigeon pea…

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to determine the probiotic potential of Lactobacillus rhamnosus GR-1 from Fiti sachets, in four widely consumed pulses, namely, black-eyed pea, pigeon pea, kabuli chickpea and desi chickpea. The secondary objective was to determine the viability of the fermented pulses during 21 days of storage at 4°C.

Design/methodology/approach

Each pulse sample was mixed with a Fiti sachet (one gram of freeze-dried consortium of Lactobacillus rhamnosus GR-1 and Streptococcus thermophilus C106) and fermented for up to 120 h. To assess the samples’ storage potential, they were refrigerated at 4°C for 21 days. Microbial enumerations and pH measurements were collected during fermentation and storage to determine the viability and fermentation potential of Lactobacillus rhamnosus GR-1 and Fiti, respectively.

Findings

There was a significant (p = 0.01) difference in mean microbial counts in all pulse samples throughout fermentation. At 24 h of fermentation, the mean bacterial count of Lactobacillus rhamnosus GR-1 in black-eyed pea, pigeon pea, kabuli chickpea and desi chickpea were 1.32 × 109 ± 0.11, 1.01 × 109 ± 0.16, 1.52 × 109 ± 0.14 and 0.80 × 109 ± 0.05 CFU/mL, respectively. Fermentation of pigeon pea, kabuli chickpea and desi chickpea at 48 h yielded the highest bacterial count for Lactobacillus rhamnosus GR-1 while black-eyed pea reached its highest bacterial count at 72 h of fermentation. The bacterial concentration of all pulse samples remained at around 109 CFU/mL during the refrigeration period of 21 days at 4°C. Furthermore, the pH of all pulse samples were below 4.6 during both fermentation and refrigerated storage.

Originality/value

Since 2004, the Fiti initiative has economically empowered hundreds of women in East Africa by teaching them how to produce and sell probiotic yogurt containing Lactobacillus rhamnosus GR-1. As a result, Fiti probiotic yogurt was made accessible to vulnerable populations in East Africa who face malnutrition, infectious diseases and environmental toxins. Because of recent climatic changes, milk has become more expensive and inaccessible for local communities. Furthermore, this study found that black-eyed pea, pigeon pea, kabuli chickpea and desi chickpea can be viable and non-diary probiotic alternatives to the Fiti probiotic yogurt in Eastern Africa. This is also the first study of its kind to provide preliminary evidence showing pulses as non-dairy alternatives to Fiti probiotic yogurt.

Details

Nutrition & Food Science , vol. 50 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0034-6659

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 12 March 2018

Kelsey Hamilton and Sharareh Hekmat

The purpose of this study is to provide information relating to organic food consumption patterns specific to the Canadian population and youth demographic. The primary…

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to provide information relating to organic food consumption patterns specific to the Canadian population and youth demographic. The primary objective of this pilot study is to investigate the knowledge, consumption patterns and willingness to pay for organic food among the first-year University students enrolled in courses at Brescia University College.

Design/methodology/approach

A questionnaire has been developed by the researchers and distributed to several first-year classes at Brescia University College. The results have been analyzed using Wilcoxon scores (rank sums), Wilcoxon two-sample test, Spearman correlation coefficients and univariate and multivariate regression analyses. A theme analysis has been generated from open-ended questions.

Findings

No significant differences exist between nutrition and non-nutrition students. Attitudes toward organic food and knowledge score significantly impact the consumption patterns and willingness to pay for organic food (p = < 0.0001). Most students indicated that they were willing to pay a premium for organic food and had positive associations with it.

Originality/value

This is the first study relating to this topic and the Canadian population. Results from this study provide baseline data that may be used to conduct future research.

Details

Nutrition & Food Science, vol. 48 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0034-6659

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Article
Publication date: 16 January 2020

Kristina Elizabeth Dunkley and Sharareh Hekmat

The purpose of this paper is to assess the growth and viability of Lactobacillus rhamnosus GR-1 (L. rhamnosus GR-1) in carrot juice (CJ), carrot apple juice (CAJ), carrot…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to assess the growth and viability of Lactobacillus rhamnosus GR-1 (L. rhamnosus GR-1) in carrot juice (CJ), carrot apple juice (CAJ), carrot orange juice (COJ) and carrot beet juice (CBJ) over 72 h of fermentation and 30 days of refrigerated storage at 4°C. The secondary objective is to evaluate sensory properties.

Design/methodology/approach

Four vegetable juice samples were inoculated with the probiotic strain L. rhamnosus GR-1 and fermented for 72 h. To observe the samples’ storage ability, the samples were refrigerated for 30 days. Microbial enumeration was conducted throughout the fermentation and storage periods to determine the viability of L. rhamnosus GR-1. Sensory evaluation with 106 participants was also conducted to assess the consumer acceptability of the vegetable juices.

Findings

All tested samples achieved mean microbial counts of at least 109 CFU/ml. During the 72-h fermentation period significant differences in microbial counts in juices CJ (p = 0.001), CAJ (p = 0.031), COJ (p = 0.047) and CBJ (p = 0.001) were observed. Over the 30-day storage period, significant differences in microbial counts were only found in juices CJ (p = 0.001) and COJ (p = 0.019). A significant decline in pH (p = 0.001) was also observed during 72 h of fermentation and 30-days of cold storage. Sensory evaluation of all juices showed significant differences in sensory attributes such as appearance (p = 0.001), flavour (p = 0.001), texture (p = 0.001) and overall acceptability (p = 0.001). Sensory results showed that the probiotic CBJ and CJ had the highest hedonic scores for flavour, texture and overall acceptability (p = 0.001) among participants. This study demonstrated that non-dairy vegetable juices could be an alternative to dairy-based probiotic products.

Originality/value

Commercially available probiotic dairy-based foods make up a large sector of the consumer market. However, the growing consumer interest in healthful eating has led to an increased demand for plant-based products. The probiotic L. rhamnosus GR-1 provides numerous therapeutic benefits, such as reducing the recurrence of bacterial vaginosis, yeast and urinary tract infections. The results of this study may have a significant influence on the health of individuals, especially in less economically developed countries.

Details

Nutrition & Food Science , vol. 50 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0034-6659

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Article
Publication date: 5 December 2018

Sharareh Hekmat and Lindsay Nicole Dawson

The purpose of this paper is to investigate knowledge and attitudes toward genetically modified organisms (GMOs) and nanotechnology among the Canadian youth demographic…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate knowledge and attitudes toward genetically modified organisms (GMOs) and nanotechnology among the Canadian youth demographic. The primary objective of this pilot study was to investigate the knowledge and attitudes toward GMOs and nanotechnology among first year university students. The secondary objective was to compare knowledge and attitudes toward GMOs and nanotechnology among students studying nutrition as to students who do not study nutrition.

Design/methodology/approach

A questionnaire was developed by researchers and student volunteers. This questionnaire was distributed to first year university classes at Western University. The multiple-choice questions were analyzed using SAS, and open-ended questions were analyzed using theme analysis.

Findings

GMO knowledge was strong for both populations, however questions related to the percentage of GM foods grown in Canada indicated nutrition students had a stronger GMO knowledge (p = 0.031). Open-ended questions revealed overall attitudes toward GMOs were either unsure or negative between both populations. Nutrition students had a more positive attitude toward nanotechnology, and a slightly stronger knowledge regarding applications of nanotechnology (p = 0.006). Theme analysis indicated that participants enrolled in nutritional studies were less apprehensive toward GMOs. No differences were indicated in open-ended questions related to nanotechnology between both groups, which may be due to the lack of awareness related to the novelty of the technology.

Research limitations/implications

Without a validated questionnaire, this reduces the reliability of the results from the questionnaire. The questionnaire was carefully designed by combining previous studies questionnaires, as well as producing questions from related literature, which increases the reliability and accuracy of the questionnaire. In addition, the questionnaires underwent several rounds of pre-piloting as well as multiple revisions with current health-care professions to increase the reliability and accuracy of the questionnaire.

Practical implications

This study will assist in understanding the current knowledge of GMOs and nanotechnology among first year university students. This will then allow us to understand if knowledge has a factor in altering students’ attitudes toward these technologies. If students do not have a strong knowledge toward these technologies, then this may lead to the potential implementation of education regarding GMOs and nanotechnology. As these technologies are emerging and being used in everyday food items, individuals should be aware of the implications, as well as the benefits of these technologies.

Originality/value

This is the first study regarding this topic in Canada. Results from this study provide baseline data that may be used to conduct future research.

Details

Nutrition & Food Science, vol. 49 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0034-6659

Keywords

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