Functional food microstructures for macronutrient release and delivery

J. E. Norton*, Y. Gonzalez Espinosa, R. L. Watson, F. Spyropoulos, I. T. Norton

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

78 Citations (Scopus)


There is a need to understand the role of fat, protein and carbohydrate in human health, and also how foods containing and/or structured using these macronutrients can be designed so that they can have a positive impact on health. This may include a reduction in fat, salt or sugar, the protection and targeted release of micronutrients or active ingredients from/to particular parts of the digestive system, improvement of gastrointestinal health or satiety enhancing properties. Such foods can be designed with various macro- and microstructures that will impact on macronutrient release and delivery. These include simple and double emulsions, the use of Pickering particles and shells, nanoparticles, liposomes, gelled networks, fluid gels and gel particles, foams, self-assembled structures, and encapsulated systems. In order to design foods that deliver these benefits understanding of how these structures behave in the gastrointestinal tract is also required, which should involve utilising both in vitro and in vivo studies. This review aims to draw together research in these areas, by focusing on the current state of the art, but also exciting possibilities for future research and food development.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)663-678
Number of pages16
JournalFood & Function: linking the chemistry and physics of food with health and nutrition
Issue number3
Early online date2 Jan 2015
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science


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