In recent years, there has been a growing demand for sugar alternatives as people become more health-conscious and seek to reduce their sugar intake. One of the key players in this sweet revolution is invertase enzyme, which plays a crucial role in creating delicious and healthier sugar substitutes.
So, what exactly is invertase? It is an enzyme that catalyzes the hydrolysis of sucrose into its two component sugars – glucose and fructose. This process is known invertase enzyme as inversion because it converts the natural orientation of sucrose molecules from alpha to beta form. The resulting mixture of glucose and fructose is commonly referred to as inverted sugar syrup.
Inverted sugar syrup has several advantages over regular table sugar (sucrose). Firstly, it has a higher sweetness intensity than sucrose, meaning that less quantity can be used to achieve the same level of sweetness. This makes it an ideal choice for those looking to cut down on their calorie intake without compromising on taste.
Secondly, inverted sugar syrup has better moisture retention properties compared to sucrose. This makes it highly desirable in baking applications where moisture preservation is essential for maintaining freshness and extending shelf life. Cakes made with invertase-enriched syrups tend to stay moist for longer periods, delighting both bakers and consumers alike.
Furthermore, invertase plays a vital role in producing low-calorie sweeteners such as high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS) – another popular alternative to traditional table sugar. HFCS contains varying amounts of fructose depending on its intended use but typically consists of 55% fructose and 45% glucose. The production process involves treating cornstarch with enzymes like amylases followed by glucoamylases or fungal alpha-amylases that convert starch into glucose-rich syrups. These syrups are then treated with invertase enzyme to convert a portion of the glucose into fructose, resulting in HFCS.
The use of invertase enzyme in sugar alternatives has revolutionized the food industry. It has allowed manufacturers to create products that cater to consumers’ desire for healthier options without compromising on taste or texture. From soft drinks and baked goods to ice creams and confectionery, invertase-enriched sweeteners have become an integral part of our daily lives.