New Delhi, Sep 25: Copra meal flour’s fibre may play a key role in controlling cholesterol, sugar levels in blood and prevention of colon cancer, claim food experts.
According to Ajay Singh from Department of Food technology, Mata Gujri College, Fatehgarh sahib and Pradyuman Kumar from Department of food engineering and technology, SLIET, Longowal in Sangrur, matured dried coconut kernel (Cocos nucifera) is known as copra and its flour is made from dried desiccated coconut. De-oiled copra meal has high fibre, high protein content with 90 per cent intestinal digestibility. It can be used as an ingredient in various dishes as composite constituents.
Due to its health promoting trait as of high fiber, it is eulogised as “kalpavriksha” by Indian classics. Present trends of the new product development show that it is gluten free, calorie free, probiotics and has many more qualities that can help people stay fit and healthy and also combat malnourishment.
The fortification of products with copra meal is advantageous as its rich source of dietary fiber
and protein. Its fiber may play a role in controlling cholesterol, sugar levels in blood and prevention of colon cancer. All these stated therapeutic potential of copra meal flour make their way to be a part of human diet that is suited best along with coarse cereals. 'We are self sufficient in production of coconut thus its availability is not so tedious for Indians, but majorly used as animal fodder, poultry and fish feed owe to its protein content to raise biomass,' Singh and Kumar said.
As far as the nutrition is concerned, copra on an average has an oil content varying from 65 to 72 per cent. Copra meal is the residue left after the extraction of oil from the coconut kernel. It contains crude protein and crude fiber of 22.75 and 12.11 respectively. It is grinded into powder and sieved through fine aperture mesh sieve. It is prominent in various minerals of human concern (Divalent cations) with high antioxidant capacity owe to its phenolic constituents thus promote best as heart promoting and anti-cancerous activities.
Copra meal flour is consumed as fortification in along with various ignored crops that is amaranth, pearl millet, quinoa, and buckwheat instead to utilize with staple cereals (wheat and rice). Most of these grains possess the same nutritional confirmations (low glycemic index,unsaturated fatty acid profile, mineral prominent, high fiber and gluten free) thus multiplies the level of benefits. In actual, these are the ignored crops, consumed traditionally.
'Wise utilisation of these wildly and widely grown crops are the vehicles for nutrition transfer as composite blend with copra meal flour through biscuits, cookies, bread, pasta and porridge to combat malnourishment problem,’’ they said. (UNI)