The antioxidant activity of dichloromethane extract from ginger was evaluated during 6 months of storage of refined sunflower oil at 25 and 45 °C. Free fatty acid (FFA) content, peroxide value (POV) and iodine value (IV) were used as criteria to assess ginger extract as an antioxidant. After 6 months of storage at 45 °C, sunflower oil containing 1600 and 2400 ppm ginger extract showed lower FFA contents (0.083 and 0.080%) and POVs (24.5 and 24.0 meq kg−1) than the control sample (FFA contents 0.380%, POV 198.0 meq kg−1). Sunflower oil containing 200 ppm butylated hydroxyanisole (BHA) and butylated hydroxytoluene (BHT) showed FFA contents of 0.089 and 0.072% and POVs of 26.5 and 24.7 meq kg−1 respectively after 6 months of storage at 45 °C. Similarly, after 6 months of storage at 45 °C, IVs of sunflower oil containing 1600 and 2400 ppm ginger extract were 80 and 92 respectively, higher than that of the control sample (53). However, IVs of sunflower oil treated with 200 ppm BHA and BHT were 94 and 96 respectively after 6 months of storage at 45 °C. These results illustrate that ginger extract at various concentrations exhibited very strong antioxidant activity, almost equal to that of synthetic antioxidants (BHA and BHT). Ginger extract also showed good thermal stability and exhibited 85.2% inhibition of peroxidation of linoleic acid when heated at 185 °C for 120 min. Therefore the use of ginger extract in foods is recommended as a natural antioxidant to suppress lipid oxidation.
© 2003 Society of Chemical Industry