Importance of Sensory Evaluation in the Stability Testing of a Medical Food

Authors

  • S. M. THOMAS,

    1. All authors are affiliated with American McGraw, Pharmaceutical Research & Development Dept., Division of American Hospital Supply Corp., P.O. Box 11887, Santa Ana, CA 92711.
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  • F. CAPORASO,

    1. All authors are affiliated with American McGraw, Pharmaceutical Research & Development Dept., Division of American Hospital Supply Corp., P.O. Box 11887, Santa Ana, CA 92711.
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  • G.A. MILLER,

    1. All authors are affiliated with American McGraw, Pharmaceutical Research & Development Dept., Division of American Hospital Supply Corp., P.O. Box 11887, Santa Ana, CA 92711.
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  • R.M. KIRAL

    1. All authors are affiliated with American McGraw, Pharmaceutical Research & Development Dept., Division of American Hospital Supply Corp., P.O. Box 11887, Santa Ana, CA 92711.
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  • Presented at the 39th annual meeting of the Institute of Food Technologists. St. Louis, MO, June 10–13, 1979.

  • The authors thank Elaine J. English, Pamela A. Mattern, and Marjorie Nyakas for their technical assistance and Barbara Bishop, Oralie Enos, Donna Mayo, and Cathy McDougall for their graphic design.

ABSTRACT

A medical food was formulated as a dry powder product containing free essential amino acids, fat and carbohydrates. Samples were stored at 4°C, 25°C, and 40°C and evaluated periodically during storage. Proximate analysis, pH, amino acid analysis, osmolarity, emulsion stability, Hunter color difference, and sensory evaluation tests were performed. Changes could not be detected by the chemical tests employed, but were manifested in sensory analysis. This study indicated that sensory testing of medical foods is a critical tool in the assessment of product stability and must be considered an integral part of any medical food stability program. Chemical analysis alone will not provide sufficient data to allow prediction of either patient acceptance or product integrity.

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