The formulation of a ready to serve functional drink with a mishmash of aloe vera and fruit juice is conceded with the intent to substitute the consumption of carbonated beverages which pay for nothing but empty calories. Aloe vera has been considered as a major ingredient for the study because of its known therapeutic effects on various organs for all sects of people and fruit juice supplies the micronutrients from fruits needed for energy production, amla provides vitamin –C for instant refreshment, mint and ginger extracts contributes to flavour and mask the off taste and flavour of aloe vera.
Keywords: RTS, Functional drink, Aloe Vera, Fruit juices
The functional drink is a non- alcoholic mixture of either one or all of the following viz. fruit juices, herbs, synthetic amino acids, vitamins and minerals added in order to provide energy, to quench thirst and replenish cells and tissues by hydrating, refreshing to relieve mental fatigue, provide immunity. Even though the globalization has influenced the Indian diet pattern by heading western diet a point has set in now, where the urban elite population has started to pose more conscious on weight reduction and general well-being. This state of mind of consumers has now turned the food market towards the innovative formulations of ready to drink, ready to serve functional drinks from easily available and nutritious natural fruit or vegetable juices.
Aloe Vera, has its foot in Indian, Chinese, Western and Mexican American medicine as a therapeutic agent in controlling metabolic disorders like diabetes, as detox in liver disorders, anti –inflammatory role in Gastrointestinal disorders and as a coolant in alleviating skin lesions and hydrating epithelial cells. In short, the pharmaceutical as well as the cosmetic industry will paralyse if aloe vera production declines. Hence, aloe vera is the base material for the RTSF drink to be prepared. The fruits Watermelon/ Pomegranate/ Kiwi/ Orange/ Apple were the choices due to the abundant availability of essential micronutrients – Vitamins and Minerals. Fruits are the major sources of sodium and potassium which serve as electrolytes and bioflavonoids, the nutraceuticals.
The seasonal obtainability of the fruits is also a matter of choice. Amla being the richest source of Vitamin C, which plays a vital role as antioxidant, t helps in boosting immunity, delays aging, and aids the formation and maintenance of collagen. Mint with its distinct flavour and palate eases digestion, relieves from depression and mental fatigue, averts nausea, freshens the mouth and a well-known detoxicant. Ginger extract possess virulent anti- carcinogenic, anti-viral and anti ulcerogenic properties and is a popular spice in all Indian cuisine.
The present study has been framed with the objective of a) To formulate different variations of RTSF drink with blends of aloe vera and fruit juices. b) To assess the overall acceptability of the variations of RTSF drink.
The fresh, quality fruits and vegetables free from bruises required for the formulation of RTSF drink namely aloe vera, watermelon, pomegranate, kiwi, orange, apple, mint was procured from farmer’s shandy in Salem district. Sugar, free from adulteration was purchased from local departmental store.
According to Danme C M Sangma et al (2016), the most preferred variant of the aloe vera RTS blends prepared from aloe vera: sweet lime: amla with respect to the sensory quality was in the ratio of 60: 20: 15, hence the same fraction of aloe vera: fruit: amla was preferred and the extracts for different variations from the aloe vera, respective fruits (watermelon, pomegranate, kiwi, orange, apple), mint and ginger was prepared and blended.
The required amount of sugar syrup was prepared by mixing sugar, water and. 3% of citric acid and just heated to dissolve the sugar. The different variations of blends and sugar syrup was homogenised and heated to 900 C for 25 minutes(TNAU, PHT, 2015), cooled and RTSF drink is ready for consumption.
Rheology in sensory evaluation is used as an essential design tool in engineering food as it is important to processing, shelf stability and sensory perception, including texture and mouth feel, and it can probe the overall structure as well as the interplay between individual colloidal components. (Jason et al. 2013). Thus, the prepared variations of RTFS drink was subjected to sensory evaluation, which was carried out by 20 semi-trained panellist on a 9. 0 point Hedonic scale.
Natural sweetness present in the watermelon has masked the bitter taste of aloe vera, in addition the sugar syrup added as per FSSAI specification (2006) must also have led to a welcoming taste of the Variation 1 compared to other variations.
There are few fruitful RTS drink studies with blends of aloe vera and amla/mint/ginger/ sweet lime/ spiced papaya. This study is initiated to formulate replenishing RTSF drink with few more different fruit blends. The aloe vera and watermelon based variation which has proved its overall acceptability is power packed with the wellness of aloe vera as well as watermelon. Watermelon is an exceptional source of L-citrulline, an amino acid, which benefits athletes and body builders by reducing fatigue and muscle soreness and increase the average peak force and decrease peak torque. It also improves blood flow and improves immunity.
More over watermelon is a nutritious bag of antioxidants Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Selenium, and richest store of Lycopene. It has 80% moisture which aids in immediate hydration. Several studies on watermelon has proved effective against obesity, blood pressure and cancer. Hence, it is rewarding the sensory evaluation also has led to the choice of highly nutritious RTSF drink with aloe vera: watermelon: amla: mint: ginger and can be recommended specially for sports persons before and after work outs, and to people of all age group to refresh and replenish.
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