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Lactic acid fermentation affects antioxidant capacity and polyphenol content in Chinese beans-based functional foods
H. CORKE (1), R. Gan (2) (1) University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, Hong Kong; (2) University of Hong Kong, , Hong Kong.

Fermentation is an ancient but effective food processing technology commonly employed to improve the nutritional and sensory qualities of foods. Edible beans are important grain legumes consumed by humans with a number of health bene?ts, which are at least partially associated with the antioxidant polyphenols in their seed coats. We found that fermentation had varying effects on antioxidant capacity of selected Chinese edible beans and bean milks, in general increasing their total phenolic content, which could be due to bioconversion between soluble phenolics and the release of bound phenolics triggered by the fermentation microorganisms. A selected genotype had substantially increased catechin content, probably due to bioconversion from proanthocyanidins. In addition, the lipophilic extract had much higher free radical scavenging capacity than the commonly investigated hydrophilic extract in lactic acid bacteria (LAB)-fermented mung bean and soybean milks. Vitexin and isovitexin, two C-glycosidic flavones, were found as the main polyphenols in mung bean milk, and fermentation did not markedly change their content, probably due to the lack of C-glycosyltransferase in LAB. Overall, fermentation is a valuable way to increase the bioavailability of bean polyphenols, and fermented bean products rich in antioxidants can be developed into novel functional foods with enhanced health benefits.