Journal of Colloid and Interface Science, Vol.560, 874-884, 2020
Effect of the ratio between behenyl alcohol and behenic acid on the oleogel properties
Hypothesis: In oleogel food systems (based on the mixture between stearic acid and stearyl alcohol) the strong effect of the weight ratio (R) between these two components on the textural and structural properties is well described. The effect of R for other fatty acids and fatty alcohols is less explored. Moreover, they do not show an enhancement of the oleogel properties for specific R. The effect of R on the oleogel properties, for a mixture of fatty acid and fatty alcohol with longer alkyl chains (behenyl alcohol and behenic acid) in sunflower and soybean oils, which are raw materials widely used in cosmetic and pharmaceutical industries, was investigated. Experiments: We characterized the oleogel properties as a function of R in terms of structuring potential: hardness, oil loss and gel stability. This information was correlated with microstructural data obtained at different length scales by coupling optical microscopy, DSC, SFC, SAXS and WAXS experiments. Findings: Our results highlight that R tunes the oleogel properties in a comparable manner to previous results obtained for stearic acid and stearyl alcohol-based oleogels. Two specific R (8:2 and 7:3) close to the 3:1 molecular ratio gave oleogels with both the highest hardness and stability. The morphology and size of the mixed crystals obtained for these R cannot solely explain why they are stronger gels with low oil loss in comparison to the other R. The almost complete crystallization for these two R is one of the key parameters controlling the oleogel properties. As described in the literature, we also suggest that the differences in oleogel properties come from the spatial distribution of the crystalline mass. In this study, we confirm that the effect of the 3:1 molecular ratio in mixed surfactant systems described more than 50 years ago for foams, emulsions and Langmuir monolayers occurs also on the crystallization of mixed fatty alcohol and fatty acid in oils leading to better oleogels properties. (C) 2019 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.