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Gas Chromatographic Analysis of Infant Formulas for Total Fatty Acids, Including trans Fatty Acids

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Twelve powdered and 13 liquid infant formulas were analyzed by using an extension of AOAC Official Method 996.01 for fat analysis in cereal products. Samples were hydrolyzed with 8N HCl and extracted with ethyl and petroleum ethers. Fatty acid methyl esters were prepared by refluxing the mixed ether extracts with methanolic sodium hydroxide in the presence of 14% boron trifluoride in methanol. The extracts were analyzed by gas chromatography. In powdered formulas, saturated fatty acid (SFA) content (mean ± SD; n = 12) was 41.05 ± 3.94%, monounsaturated fatty acid (MUFA) content was 36.97 ± 3.38% polyunsaturated fatty acid (PUFA) content was 20.07 ± 3.08%, and total trans fatty acid content was 1.30 ± 1.27%. In liquid formulas, SFA content (mean ± SD; n = 13) was 42.29 ± 2.98%, MUFA content was 36.05 ± 2.47%, PUFA content was 20.65 ± 2.40%, and total trans fatty acid content was 0.88 ± 0.54%. Total fat content in powdered formulas ranged from 4.4 to 5.5 g/100 kcal and linoleic acid content ranged from 868 to 1166 mg/100 kcal. In liquid formulas, total fat content ranged from 4.1 to 5.1 g/100 kcal and linoleic acid content ranged from 820 to 1100 mg/100 kcal. There were no significant differences between powdered and liquid infant formulas in concentrations of total fat, SFA, MUFA, PUFA, or trans fatty acids.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Office of Nutritional Products, Labeling and Dietary Supplements, HFS-840, 200 C St, SW, Washington, DC 20204.

Publication date: 2002-01-01

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  • The Journal of AOAC INTERNATIONAL publishes refereed papers and reviews in the fields of chemical, biological and toxicological analytical chemistry for the purpose of showcasing the most precise, accurate and sensitive methods for analysis of foods, food additives, supplements and contaminants, cosmetics, drugs, toxins, hazardous substances, pesticides, feeds, fertilizers and the environment available at that point in time. The scope of the Journal includes unpublished original research describing new analytical methods, techniques and applications; improved approaches to sampling, both in the field and the laboratory; better methods of preparing samples for analysis; collaborative studies substantiating the performance of a given method; statistical techniques for evaluating data. The Journal will also publish other articles of general interest to its audience, e.g., technical communications; cautionary notes; comments on techniques, apparatus, and reagents.
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